Since we’re turning the MINI into a dedicated track car, we gutted most of the interior. The Gen 1 MINI has a huge oval opening in the middle of the door once you remove the door panel. It has a rather sharp edge (protected by a piece of weather stripping) and since we were not able to find any aluminum panels pre-cut in the right shape, we just decided to build our own out of existing materials and cover them in vinyl. The new door cards are there to protect the occupant and keep out water. They also give us more clearance for the wings of the Sparco seats. We also wanted to rework the door handles since they stand away from the door when the stock panel is removed and looked out of place.
First we had to re-think the door handle. Since the door handle just pulls a cable much like you would find on a bicycle brake system, we decided to take advantage of the cable housing. By fixing the wire to the door, then when you pull on the housing it activates the latch. Put a strap on the handle, and you have a Porsche RS style door pull. It works well and is very clean. The photos show how the cable attaches to the door as well as the finished look. We still have some stray bits of tape to clean up, but they look pretty good.