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"As MINI gears up to release the entirely new MINI Cooper and Cooper S in early autumn it’s time for a look back and where the model has come from. The idea, hatched by brilliant Formula One designer John Cooper, to fuel the agile small car with an extra hit of performance and a car for the road and track has lost none of its appeal. But the Cooper has never been about horsepower, as a comparison between the classic Mini and its two successors resoundingly proves. The key here is the basic principle of the creative use of space, combined with the inimitable go-kart feeling that runs like a thread through the three generations.
Whether your a classic, R50/53 or a R56 fan, it’s hard to argue with the incredible success of the little car from the UK or the experience behind the wheel."
MotoringFile Archive A Look Back at the Three Generation of the MINI Cooper & Cooper S
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Photos of John Cooper in August 1998 with both Classic and New Coopers at Gaydon, from the interesting Haynes book 'New MINI' by Graham Robson:



 
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