The History of Mini Clubman and 1275 GT Gauges 1969 to 1980

In 1969, the Mini was restyled and the Mini Clubman and 1275 GT were born.

Rob Haynes had been brought into British Leyland from Ford and was tasked with replacing the upmarket Riley and Wolseley versions of the Mini. The popular 998cc Mini Cooper was also replaced with the 1275 GT.  To complete the Mini range transformation, the Countryman and Traveller were superseded by the Clubman Estate.  Each new designs brought a new more-modern square look to the front of the car.

The initial production of the Clubman and 1275 GT were hit by delays due to changes in the production process and relocation of the tooling from Cowley to Longbridge.  Many customers were forced to wait until early 1970 for their new cars.

The Clubman and 1275 GT were in production for over a decade, but failed to win the hearts of many Mini enthusiasts.  Indeed, production of the original “round-front” Mini design continued throughout the 1970s and up until 2000.  The Clubman and 1275 GT were safer, better equipped, and had easier access to the engine.  However, they were more expensive and aerodynamically inferior to the original “round-front” design.


By the end of 1980’s, the production numbers for the three new models had reached:

  • Clubman saloons – 275,583
  • Clubman Estates – 197,606
  • 1275 GT – 110,673

In 1980, the Mini Clubman was replaced by the new hatchback Austin Metro.

The gauges and instruments featured on the Mini Clubman and 1275 GT were still designed and manufactured by Smiths Instruments. Replacement gauges are still supplied to enthusiasts all over the world, especially in Australia and Japan. Examples of the range of gauges now available for the classic Mini can be found in the Mini section on our website along with other blogs looking at the history of the Mini and Smiths Instruments.

For more information on gauges supplied for classic Minis, please contact us on:

Email:  [email protected]

Phone: 01639732200

Via the website