Innocenti, the Italian car maker, had an eye for good cars and started manufacturing Austin models, under license, in the 1960s. It started with the A40, followed by Sprite, the 1100 and of course, the Mini. The 1974 Innocenti Mini, which remained in production until 1982, was the most spectacular of the bunch. It featured a squared-off styling by Bertone, in the purest expression of what hot hatches were meant to be at the time, and indeed had several improvement that put to shame the actual Mini, so much so that many thought that British Leyland should have been licensing it back from Innocenti! In addition to its awesome good looks, it also had folding rear seats and opening quarter windows.
Mechanically speaking, the Innocenti Mini was absolutely identical to its British counterpart, and featured a choice of 1-liter or 1.3-liter engines. The monocoque chassis was equipped with an independent suspension and front disc brakes, and power was delivered to the driving wheels through a four-speed manual transmission.
In terms of performance, the fastests Innocenti Minis could reach a top speed of 99 miles per hour, and accelerate to 60 in 13 seconds. The 1974 Innocenti Mini was a great-looking little car with trusted mechanical underpinnings; it was a success.