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Top 15: Minis through the years

In a few weeks' time you'll be able to buy a brand new MINI, the fourth entirely new generation of car to wear this badge. Here are 15 of the classics to remind you just how far they've come since 26 August 1959. The first Mini was offered as an Austin or Morris, but throughout the years, the Cooper, Riley and Wolseley versions added names, and much appeal to Sir Alec Issigonis' brilliant baby car concept.

We take a look at some of the most basic, sporting and luxurious Minis sold officially by BMC, Leyland and Rover dealers between 1959 and 2000. The shape may have stayed roughly the same over the years, but the marketing, prices, colours and performance, all perfectly reflect the times they were produced. Follow the progress of the Mini between 1959 and 2000 - which is your favourite?

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2000 The last Mini rolls off the line

The last Mini to be built in Longbridge was seen off by media and various personalities, and played out by the Quincy Jones composed soundtrack of the film The Italian Job. The final Mini was driven off the production line in CAB1 by production line supervisor Geoff Powell with singer Lulu in the passenger seat after a production run of 41 years, and around 5.5 million cars. The new one is going to have a lot to live up to...

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