The Mini has topped a list of auto-enthusiast heavyweights to earn the title of best-built British car of all time, as awarded by Auto Express weekly auto magazine.
A list of the all-time Best of British Top-10 followed a survey of UK industry heavy-hitters including Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer and BMW’s Ian Robertson. The auto executives were asked to submit their individual top10 from a list of 75 models that rolled off UK lines over the century of vehicle production. They were asked to rank their choices on sales, design and performance.
When the results were cross-tabulated, the original Mini — Sir Alec Issagonis’ creation in the face of the fuel shortage as a result of the 1956 Suez crisis — topped the Top-10 list that included the Aston Martin DB5, Jaguar E-Type, Land Rover Defender, McLaren F1 and Lotus Seven.
The 10 top models are actually a diverse bunch, with city cars like the Mini, roadsters, off-roaders and supercars. It even includes the compact Ford Escort family car.
“This survey is a reminder of how many iconic cars Britain has produced over the years. So many of our Top 50 cars redefined segments and pushed the boundaries of what was possible,” explained Auto Express Editor-in-chief Steve Fowler. “The spirit of innovation which created models as diverse as the Mini, E-Type and Defender continues today and the British automotive industry should be proud of its achievements and confident of the future.”
Best of British Top 10 (ranked)
2) Jaguar E-Type
3) Land Rover Defender
4) Aston Martin DB5
5) McLaren F1
6) Range Rover Mk1
7) Ford GT40
8) Caterham/Lotus Seven
9) Ford Escort Mk1
10) Lotus Elise