THE ITALIAN JOB
The Magnificent Mini
The smallest car on
American roads today, MINI is truly one of the stars of "The Italian
Job." Taking the automotive world by storm, with over 30,000 sold in the
United States alone since its re-launch in the spring of 2002, the tiny car with
a big personality was introduced in England during the late 1950s as a new type
of car designed to combat the Suez fuel crisis. With over 5
million sold in the UK, the car became a cultural icon around the world,
driven by everyone from The Beatles to British royalty. The classic version was
sold in the U.S. from 1960 to 1967 and still enjoys a cult following to this
Though audiences will
see only three MINIs one red, one white and one blue filming the getaway with
the gold during the height of rush-hour traffic in Los Angeles took 32 MINIs.
Because of the elaborate stunts in the sequences, some of the cars were rigged
for jumps and others were fitted to withstand numerous bullet hits, while the
"hero" cars stayed pristine throughout.
James R. Dyer jokes, "Those 32 MINIs that we got from the BMW group were
treated pretty harshly — flying over, crashing or bumping into all sorts of
things. They might've given us 32 cars, but we could've used 132!"
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