Jul 22, 2014
The Story of “MINI Wildgoose” and MINI Camping Then and Now.
“Go anywhere! Stop anywhere!” exclaimed the brochure as a new campervan hit the roads in the mid-1960s. It was called MINI Wildgoose, and it was aimed at “‘Retired Couples’ who being freed from business, desire the carefree life.” It boasted economy with comfort, and was the ultimate example of the ‘Creative Use of Space’ ideology set out by the classic MINI.
British coachbuilders Wildgoose Ltd., based in Worthing, Surrey, produced approximately 60 MINI Wildgoose campervans and towable caravans between 1963 and 1968. Converted from classic MINI Vans, they were sold to adventurous drivers determined to push the limits of efficient travel. The retrofitting specialists even offered a ‘convert your own’ service for MINI Van drivers who didn’t wish to part with their existing ride.
This limited edition run of unique campers was a fantastic example of how the ‘Creative Use of Space’ of the classic MINI inspired the ingenuity of fans from the very outset. The stylish campers included a number of features that made them the ultimate in on-the-road comfort. The 1965 MINI Wildgoose “Brent”, for example, (pictured below) could sleep up to four adults and included a gas hob, kitchen sink, curtains, plenty of storage space, an optional electrically powered telescopic roof offering 5’11” of headroom and an 850cc four-cylinder engine with 34HP. Of course, MINI Wildgoose was far less concerned with speed than it was about stopping at every opportunity for a scenic spot of tea.
Today there are fewer than a dozen known road-worthy MINI Wildgoose. Recently an extremely rare unrestored MINI Wildgoose was unearthed and sold at auction to a lucky bidder who will no doubt have it ready to ride again, but this breed of MINI is clearly on the endangered list.
Though the MINI Wildgoose may be in short supply, MINI drivers all over the world still enjoy camping with their MINI. Get inspired by these rovers who skip the hotel and opt to park under the stars.