Blog : The story of the other twini-Mini

Carole Nash Classic Insurance Specialists

Ian Elliott

Bufi-Mowog (1)

The ease of adding an extra engine afforded by the Mini’s subframe configuration wasn’t lost on several ‘special’ builders. One of the most entertaining was concocted within earshot of the Longbridge plant, in Barnt Green village.

Barnt Green Post Office and shop  was run by Tony and Pat Fisher, two great motorsport enthusiasts. (They spent their 1961 honeymoon driving an 850 Mini in the Tulip Rally, Tony won all four British Rally Championships in 1962 driving his own 997 Mini Cooper and the Fishers were leading lights in the Hagley Car Club –  Pat has remained so after Tony’s death in 2009).

In the mid-1960s, Tony, in comjunction with friend Dave Butterworth, built a twin-engined Autocross special. It was called the ‘Bufi-Mowog’ – Bu= Butterworth, Fi=Fisher and ‘Mowog’ was the parts trademark cast into things like BMC cylinder blocks.

To avoid the complication of dealing with two manual gearboxes, it was decided to use an 1100 automatic rear unit, adding a supercharger to bring the power up to a similar level to that of the 1071 Mini Cooper S engine installed at the front. So the idea was that the driver  concentrated on operating the front engine and transmission, and let the automatic unit at the back just do its own thing.

This made it pretty hairy to drive, because you could never be quite sure when the rear unit might chime in with a kickdown, and so on. In fact, the only driver who could really get the best out of the Bufi-Mowog was Pat Fisher – maybe it needed feminine intuition to anticipate that capricious rear engine!

It was quite a successful machine however – it would be good to get together all its competition history and find out what became of it.

Keith Adams

Keith Adams

Editor and creator AROnline at AROnline
Created www.austin-rover.co.uk in 2001 and built it up to become the world's foremost reference source for all things BMC, Leyland and Rover Group, before renaming it AROnline in 2007.

Is the Editor of the Parkers website and price guide, formerly editor of Classic Car Weekly, and launch editor/creator of Modern Classics magazine. Has contributed to various motoring titles including Octane, Practical Classics, Evo, Honest John, CAR magazine, Autocar, Pistonheads, Diesel Car, Practical Performance Car, Performance French Car, Car Mechanics, Jaguar World Monthly, MG Enthusiast, Modern MINI, Practical Classics, Fifth Gear Website, Radio 4, and the the Motoring Independent...

Likes 'conditionally challenged' motors and taking them on unfeasible adventures all across Europe.
Keith Adams

10 Comments

  1. Hi Ian. You should follow this up, Pat F stopped as director of Hagley CC last April, but I am sure the club could put you in touch.
    I remember marvelling at the performance of this special at Autocrosses when we were Austin Apps, amazing and it usually took FTD.
    Best wishes to you, Jim

  2. As soon as I saw te picture I thought “That’s the Bufi-Mowog!”.
    I saw it perform at Autocrosses in the 1970’s as I helpen my neighbour and his friend who Autocrossed a Wolseley 1500 (with Riley 1.5 head & carbs). They were both serving police officers, the car was painted pale blue with three white stripes across the car and they called themselves The Panda Autocross Team!

  3. HI, I BUILT A TWINI IN 1992 IT WAS A INPROVED COPY BASED ON THE ORIGINAL MADE BY JOHN COOPER. IT FEATURED IN THE 2ND EDITION OF MINIWORLD. I STILL HAVE NOTES DIAGRAMS AND INSTRUCTIONS OF HOW I DID IT. IT WAS SO EASY. ANY ONE INTERESTED IN MAKING ONE THE PLANS ARE AVAILABLE. I WAIT IN ERNEST
    RICHARD MANSFIELD

    • I recall reading a Cara and car Conversion article on your Twini and really admired your workmanship and engineering skill. Seem to recall you used an Mini Seven body rather than risk using a real Cooper. Also recall at the end of the article there was a comment about a possible super charger.

      Chris Sore Calgary Canada

  4. there are still some citroen sahara about they were built by the factory with an engine either end and would go up 45degree sand dune where heavier 4x4s would not go.

  5. I remember seeing W.R.C. Schiedenhelm drive one of these at a horse racing track parking lot near San Diego back in the 60’s. They ran like a mouse on tennis shoes. Made the Lotus Elite’s look like draft horses. Bring back the minimalist automobile!

  6. RICHARD MANSFIELD
    Hi Richard. I would be very interested in your plans for a Twini as I am currently planning such a project. Please contact me at del452@aol.com if you receive this message.
    Thanks,
    Derek

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