Revolutionary Imp celebrates 50 years at Gaydon

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The Historic Rally Register will celebrate the Hillman Imp’s 50th anniversary, with a rally-prepared example taking centre stage – during its open day at the Heritage Motor Centre on 12 January.

The rear-engined car featured an all-alloy straight four making it was a popular choice for rallying.

The car’s greatest triumph came in Holland’s International Tulip Rally when it powered Rosemary Smith to the first international victory for a woman, in 1965.

It would go on to take Colin Malkin to the Motoring News Rally Championship in ’68 and (as the George Bevan Sunbeam) scoop the BTCC championship three times (from 1970-’72) in the hands of Bill McGovern (top photo), demonstrating a Fraser Team Imp at Silverstone in 2008.

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