A Clubman Estate 1976
Purchased in 2005, sadly sold in 2007 !
Read about the Mini Magazine photo-shoot here
Read about the Intersection photo-shoot here
The clubman estate was launched at the same time as the new MKIII minis. British Leyland made the clubman saloon as a new more upmarket mini and the estate took over from the old Austin and Morris mini estates.
The most well known feature is of course the front end. Larger, squarer and fitted with a new grill and badge compared to the other mini saloons. Both the salon and the estate also had six spooked steel hubcaps. The rectangular instrument binnacle was also a feature, with the multi directional air vents being fitted seven years before appearing in the mini 1000.
The estate featured sliding rear windows and also wing mirrors to both sides unlike the saloon version. The automatic transmission was manufactured on the estate and saloon until the 1098cc engine was introduced in 1975. This meant that the auto was only available with the 998cc engine.
The estate had a luggage capacity of 18.5 cubic feet with the rear seats in the raised position but when lowered the capacity was greatly increased to 35.3 cubic feet.
My Clubman Estate
My Clubman Estate was purchased as a private sale in Solihull in the tail end of 2005. I went to look at it on day one (Saturday). Day two and Lee Richards came to have a look at it. (Thanks to Lee) (Sunday). Day three (Monday), my mum sister and myself went to pay for it and pick it up. We travelled down in the afternoon did some shopping in Solihull and went to pick it up at diner time, about 6pm. This all went without a hitch except the driving position was somewhat different to the sidewalk and took some getting used to. The lights seemed to be pointing at the sky and the wipers did not wipe the window, just my luck lost in Solihull with poor lights in the dark, in rush hour and it starts raining!!
I managed to do my usual and get mega lost ending up in Coventry. Not impressed!! By this time I was in desperate need of fuel as the previous owner had been very kind to sell it almost empty. I managed to get on the M6 motorway, now that was scary, very scary, bad lights, big trucks and bad wipers. We got back home though in the end, although it was about 10pm.
I used the clubman as my daily car until Christmas 2005 and then started swapping between the clubby and the sidewalk. I had to have a new exhaust and starter motor. At the end of January 2006 I decided to have a new rear sub frame fitted, some work on the floor and a little titivating at Leaton Mini Centre.
Update 13th May 2006
I have been busy preparing the
estate to go into mini magazine (the August edition, on sale on the 11th
July) including fully under sealing this one as well, I had a full day under sealing,
what joy!! I discovered there was a
small water leak and have now decided that the culprit is the windscreen in the
same place as the Sidewalk funnily enough.
I drove down to the photo shoot
along with a friend of mine called Steven Edgar on Tuesday 2nd May in
the morning, to arrive at the bed and breakfast mid afternoon.
The accommodation was excellent and highly recommended (Manor
Farm). I then went for a bit of
dinner with my friend and then got some rest.
Wednesday 3rd May soon came and after having breakfast Steven
and I got on with cleaning the Estate.
We then set of to the photo
shoot but called in at the Castle Coomb race circuit on the way.
I had to park at the gate though and walk from there on due to the speed
humps that have been well thought out, specially to catch the many classic cars
that use the circuit out!!
Soon enough it was time to move
on and find the photo studio. When
I arrived they were just finishing off the photos on the mini in the morning
slot. Helen Webster, Sarah
Heppenstall and the photographer Paul Smith, along with the owner of the other
mini were there to greet us. They
gave my car a quick going over to make it extra sparkling clean.
Oh yes they also unloaded all of the tools I took to cope with any
breakdowns that luckily never materialised.
We then had a bite to eat kindly
provided by Mini Magazine and then pushed the Estate into the studio.
All sorts of photos were taken including a mug shot of myself.
Soon enough the photo shoot was
over and it was time to grab dinner in Chippenham and then travel back after
rush hour!! I only had a quick take
away meal and a bag of aniseed balls (very healthy) but it was a chance to see
the town even if it was a flying visit. We
then set off to come home and arrived back quite late.
Overall it was a very good and exciting couple of days. Read more about it here.
Update 13th December 2007
Finally had to take the decision to sell the clubby, it was sitting in the garage, not being driven and feeling very sorry for itself. I also desperately needed some money to finish off the E83W. Dreadfully hard decision but finally realised I didn't have an alternative.
The clubman estate was purchased by someone from London as a Christmas present for his girlfriend. I hope that they have lots of enjoyment from it and give it the love and attention it deserves.