The Mini, perhaps the most iconic automobile in history, is about to turn 50 years of age. Runner-up in the Car of the Century competition, the Mini was catalysed by the fuel rationing resultant from the 1956 Suez Crisis. Its price and frugality at the pump made the BMC Mini a symbol of freedom for baby boomers and its status as an emblem of the swinging sixties was reinforced in 1966 when The Beatles’ manager Brian Epstein, gave each of the Fab Four a Mini Cooper S as a gift. George Harrison had his Mini painted with psychedelic images, yantras and Sanskrit mantras and it subsequently starred in The Beatles’ film Magical Mystery Tour. BMW, which now owns both Mini and Rolls Royce, has come up with a fresh interpretation of the extravagant original Mini to coincide with the brand’s 50th birthday.
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