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Morris About the Morris Mini Cooper 1275S Mk.1
Prior to the release of the Austin seven and the Morris Mini Minor, the Austin A40, designed by Pininfarina of Italy had been successful in using the 2 box styling. This same design styling was adopted for the Mini Cooper. A front wheel drive was selected to keep the floor paneling level flat. A small powerful engine was selected and developed to be mounted sideways, in front, and driving the small diameter 10" wheels, which were laid out at the four corners of the body.
By this design, 80% of the overall length could be utilized for the passengers and driver, and to further increase the space, the gearbox was installed in the oil sump of the engine. The suspension system of the Mini was one of its most excellent features. Four wheel independent suspension using a double wishbone and a rear trailing arm and the springing was a rubber, semipneumatic, liquid filled and the front and rear wheels were joined together with a thin pipe to equalize the pressures during running. This type of dampening, using hydraulic springing is very compact, so that it could all be mounted without interfering with the passenger compartment. It was patented under the name of "Hydrolastic". The designer of this vehicle was sir Alec Issigonis, a Greek who became a naturalized British subject, and well known throughout the British automobile industry.