Matthew and his 1977 Leyland Mini 1000

Quintessentially British, the Mini is a true icon of automotive history. Today on Re:Fuelers Rides we have one of our most regular visitors in Matthew and his 1977 Leyland Classic Mini. However, pull up next to this car at a set of traffic lights and as soon as they turn green you’ll realise this is no ordinary Mini 1000. Currently making over 3 times more power than when it left the factory, Matthews Mini is a definite “pocket rocket”!


Why did I want a Mini? Well, who wouldn’t want a Mini! They’re such amazing, fun cars to drive and you don’t see them around very often anymore.

The talking point of this car is that it has a 1.8 k-series engine in a custom fitted subframe to make it look like it’s actually meant to be in there. The Mini’s running at about 125bhp, but with the weight of the actual car it’s more than enough. It’s a real head turner and no one expects to be overtaken by a mini especially over the speed limit (we won’t say how much over)! Domencian blue is the colour of the car. I haven’t seen another Mini with the colour. The car also has a CB radio installed ready for it’s European adventures.

I’ve taken the car all over England, including: Bristol for IMM (International Mini Meet), Cornwall for the Riviera Run, Isle of Wight, Malory Park for mini in the park and of course Re:Fuel every month! Through all this the Mini hasn’t missed a beat. 

For anyone looking to buy themselves a classic Mini the biggest thing to look out for is RUST! I’d also highly recommend making the engine more ‘modern’ if you’re thinking of travelling long distances. Nothing worse than being on the side of the M5 with an overheated car!

As far as future plans go for the car I would love to put a 135 camshaft in for a little bit of extra poke, not that it’s not fast enough already!

Car Facts:

Make: Mini 

Model: Mini 1000 (actually k series) 

Year: 1977

Engine: 1.8 k-series injection 

BHP: 125

Top speed: Don’t actually know I chickened out at 118 need to dyno her

Weight: 2 man lift

Additional mods: 1.8 k-series conversion done by Craig at Torbay Minis, Stage 2 cooling system (custom) and CB radio.