Ccurrently without a project car, the Mini cooper needs repairs but it’s not getting modified so the creative aspect isnt there. So with eyes on drift cars, turboing things, and engine swaps why not just build the car from scratch.
Various manuals have been published on how to build a Locost chassis (lo-cost, being the name for projects that share the lotus 7's design). The design is simple, the fabrication work would be a test but very doable since I have all the tools I’d need minus the chassis table. I’d use the slightly wider design with irs and perhaps lengthen the front a few inches, also some sort of enhanced protection for the occupants. If I buy a tube bender then, A cage that extends along the footwell with side impact bars and a high rear hoop tied into the existing chassis
Drivetrain wise I’ve still got a 1uz sitting around, it would need to he manual swapped again which would cost some money but depending on where I set the budget, its doable. I’ve already got all the wiring supplies and ecu I’d need. The 4.0 v8 with 260 ftlbs of torque would be plenty for one of these chassis, with 4 valve dohcs the engine is big but that could be worked around. Maybe a shorter intake plenum, shorter wider oilpan and use the motor as a structural member to negate the huge hole in the chassis?
These are just dreams for now, life is getting expensive lately and I refuse to start another project until the mini works well enough to daily. But when the time comes, I’ll set a budget of 7-8k over the course of a year and start ordering metal.