This is a rare Ogle SX1000 competition coupe, just 69 examples of the SX1000 are believed to have been built before the company founder David Ogle was tragically killed in an accident with a truck, while driving an Ogle Lightweight to the Brands Hatch racing circuit in England.
The Unusual Ogle SX1000
The Ogle SX1000 was developed as a new sports car that shared a platform with the then-new Mini back in 1961. The Mini had been unveiled in 1959 and it had quickly proven to be wildly successful, it pioneered the transversely mounted engine/transmission up front powering the front wheels – a layout used today by a vast array of cars.
When David Ogle saw the new Mini for the first time he realized it had great sporting potential, he also noted that he could use the steel floorpan and running gear as the platform for a new car of his own design.
Ogle had studied industrial design at the Central School of Art and Design in London after WWII, after graduating he designed radios for Murphy Radio, and Bush Radio. His best-known design from this period is the Bush TR82 transistor radio, he would later design the first generation Reliant Scimitar which uses a fiberglass body just like the SX1000.
During the Second World War David Ogle had joined the Fleet Air Arm. He would fly the Supermarine Seafire in operations in North Africa, the Mediterranean, and in the south of France at various times during the war. He rose to the rank of Lt Commander and was awarded both the DSC and the MBE.
Above Image: The Ogle SX1000 has a fiberglass body mounted to a Mini floorpan, and it makes use of the original Mini engine/transmission, brakes, and suspension.
When he first developed the Ogle SX1000 prototype, BMC (the British Motor Corporation) who were building the Mini refused point blank to provide parts. David got around this by offering to convert a buyer’s own Mini for £550.
BMC did eventually relent on the strict condition that the word “Mini” wasn’t used in any advertising, brochures, or promotional material. These cars that were built by Ogle from scratch sold for £1,190, which works out to approximately £26,000 in 2021 money – roughly double the cost of a new Mini Cooper S at the time.
It’s rumored that Ogle Design lost money on each Ogle SX1000 that was sold, depending on who you talk to either 66 or 69 were built between 1962 and 1964 when the company was shuttered two years after David Olge’s untimely death.
With its fiberglass body, race-proven Mini underpinnings, and excellent aerodynamics the Ogle SX1000 has proven to be a fierce competitor in the world of classic motor racing. The model’s rarity and relative obscurity ensures that it always draws a crowd in the paddock on race day, with very few people able to identify what it is on sight.
It’s not known exactly how many examples of the Ogle SX1000 remain in the world today, they come up for sale infrequently, typically with prices in the £30,000+ range making them reasonably affordable for what they are.
Above Image: This SX1000 is fitted with a 120 bhp 1,293cc BMC A-Series engine rebuilt to FIA specification running on 105 octane fuel.
The 1962 Ogle SX1000 Shown Here
The car you see here is a 1962 Ogle SX1000 that was originally owned by David Ogle himself. This Ogle is chassis number 004, making it a very early production model.
After David Ogle’s death in 1962 the ownership of this car passed to his wife who opted to keep in in storage rather that sell it on. Ultimately chassis 004 would remain in storage for 30 years before being acquired by an enthusiast who painstakingly restored the car to concours condition, first showing it to the public on the Cartier Style et Luxe lawn at the 2009 Goodwood Festival of Speed.
It was later decided to convert the car into a tribute to the SX1000 raced in the 1960s by John Handley, the man who would win the 1968 European Touring Car Championship driving a works Mini Cooper S.
The Ogle is now fitted with a 1,293cc BMC A-Series engine rebuilt to FIA specification running on 105 octane fuel, it produces a maximum of 120 bhp resulting in a very quick car due to its low curb weight.
If you’d like to read more about this unusual British race car you can click here to visit the listing on Bonhams. It’s due to cross the auction block on the 9th of July at the Goodwood Festival of Speed with a price guide of £30,000 to £40,000.
Images courtesy of Bonhams
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