A classic Mini Van which was hidden for decades because its original owner couldn’t pass her driving test is expected to sell for a staggering £25,000 at auction.
The 1968 Austin Mini Van is regarded as a “time warp” car after being driven just 302 miles in 47 years.
It was bought new for £400 by a Miss G. Crumcott, from Northern Ireland, for her first car.
But she couldn’t pass her test so never got round to taking the little car for a drive.
Instead, it was parked in her garage where it remained for almost 30 years before being sold to a local BMC Mini dealer.
He parked the car in his showroom and held onto it for almost ten years before selling it on.
The car still hasn’t been driven and is now owned by Glasgow classic car dealer Gary Jones, who is selling it later this month.
Mr Jones, 45, said: “This Mini Van is unique, there won’t be another one like it.
“Most Mini Vans have been completely restored because the build quality was shocking. Any Mini Van which was regularly used wouldn’t have survived this long.
“This is entirely original and has hardly ever been used. Most of the miles on the clock are from when it was delivered new to its first owner.
“But she couldn’t pass her driving test so it was parked in the garage where it was left for almost 30 years. When it was rediscovered, it was covered in newspapers.
“Everything is original. It runs beautifully. I sold another Mini recently, but this is completely different - there’s nothing like it.”
Built on the longer Traveller chassis but without side windows, the Mini Van proved popular in 1960s Britain as a cheaper alternative to the car.
It was classed as a commercial vehicle and as such carried no sales tax.
Gary’s model still has the seat protectors and rubber floor mats, along with original Dunlop tyres, spare wheel and unopened toolbox.
The car, which is in perfect running order, has will be sold at Silverstone Auction’s Practical Classics Restoration Show Sale on March 28th, at the NEC, Birmingham.
It is expected to sell for between £23,000 and £25,000 - a 60-fold increase on the price paid in 1968.
Nick Whale, managing director of Silverstone Auctions, said: “We are thrilled to be offering this virtually unused and untouched Austin Mini Van at our sale on March 28.
“This rare find is in ‘as new’ condition and is surely an alluring, promising prospect for Mini or other collectors in the market.”