Mini and Italian Job

Updated: Apr 23, 2021

One unforgettable example of popular culture from the 1960s which epitomises the era, was the film The Italian Job. This film further links the Jaguar E-type with the Mini and E-type 60 will feature a display featuring some of the cars and vehicles that were involved in the making of the film.

Above: Spread taken from 'The Self Preservation Society' book published by Porter Press International

1961 Jaguar E-type Roadster ‘848 CRY’ - began life as ‘2 BBC’ and was the demonstrator car of a Jaguar dealer in Leicestershire but was also actively raced at weekends. It was re-registered and some years later ended up in the hands of Paramount Films. In the film it was one of a convoy of ‘fast cars’ which were intercepted by the Mafia crossing the Alps into Italy. In 1977, unaware of its race history or movie role, E-type Club co-founder, Philip Porter bought the car and in the early ‘90s had it completely restored.

E-type & Minis in 2018 on the Italian Job tour in Turin

Austin Mini Cooper S – the much-loved and instantly recognisable red, white and blue Minis. Launched to the press in August 1959, the Mini was an instant hit and was used in the film because of its iconic 1960s status. At the time, they were small and inexpensive and very accessible to everyone. The Mk I Minis were the stars of the film and the 15-minute chase sequence in Turin is loved by us all.

1964 Bedford Val 14 six-wheeled coach (with a Harrington Legionnaire body) - did four years service with London-based Batten’s Coaches taking Londoners out to the seaside resorts of Essex and Kent before being purchased by Paramount. In the film it transported the Minis and the gold from the outskirts of Turin and into the mountains where, having dispatched the Minis, it provided the memorable ‘cliff-hanger’ ending to the film. After the film it went back into service in Lancashire and then Scotland before being converted once again to transport a race car, then horses and then motorcycles.

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