WHILE MOST car nuts were very pleased to see the Mini brand revived by BMW years ago, not all of them have been fans of some of the giant variants.

Enter the David Brown Automotive company in the UK, which specialises in hand-building short-run high-end vehicles.

The latest exercise is a complete rework of the Mini of the sixties, using the original bodywork profi le and an updated version of the original powerplant.

All the seams have been stripped off the body and overall it has a smooth and subtly modifi ed profi le.

Inside there are acres of leather, a wooden-rimmed steering wheel, plus modern electronics.

As for the powerplant, the 1275cc four has been given a new lease of life and now claims 78hp (58kW) @ 5700rpm and 123Nm of torque at 3100rpm. That's tied to a four-speed manual transmission.

You can order a hotted-up version of the engine, and the builders offer a fairly high degree of customisation.

Some 1000 are said to be planned and are individually ordered direct from the maker. UK reports suggest the starting price is around 50,000 pounds, or an eye-watering $87,000.