CAR: Mini Mark
BODY: 2 Door Convertible Cream
MECHANICAL: Boxer 4 Cylinder Automatic
PRICE: $See it at Mecum Indy Auction July 15th
This vehicle will be available at the upcoming Mecum Indianapolis Auction, Wednesday July 15th as run number 78
We are Honored to offer you this, two-owner, Mini Mark with only 5,613 original miles.
Sold on 5/19/82 to Mr. Shemwell of Independence, MO with 1979 miles.
Equipped with VW Engine and automatic transmission, Hardtop, Side Curtains, Convertible top, Dual side-mount spares, Aluminum Wheels, White Wall Tires, Bucket Seats, Fog Lamps, Dual Exhaust, Pinstriping and large front trunk.
Also included is the original Brochure, Bill of Sale to Mr. Shemwell, Bremen Price Lists, Correspondence with Bremen and Accessory List.
We have attached the history of Mini Marks for your enjoyment!
The Mini Mark was a factory-built conversion, not a kit car, it was built in Bremen, Indiana by the Bremen Motor Sport company. It was primarily built on a Volkswagen Beetle chassis making it reliable, easy to service and find replacement parts. Sales literature also shows it available on a Ford Pinto chassis. Bremen Sport started around 1965 building the Citation dune buggies. The two Bremen partners were DeWayne Creighton and Omar Hostetter. They ordered dune buggy kits from California and after building them thought they should build their own cars in Bremen.
I had the opportunity to sit down and chat with partner DeWayne Creighton and learned many details of the company putting to rest some of the rumors and false information I had found since purchasing our car and starting this blog. The company built five different models of cars, the Citation, Sebring Creighton, Maxi Taxi and Mini Mark during its existence. Creighton was the name of one the founders of the company and “Creighton” was also one of the car models built by Bremen. DeWayne gave numbers of around 300-400 of the Mini Marks being built, many more than the estimates of 100 I heard previously, but still low numbers to increase the value of the car
Here are pictures of the startup facility and original assembly line in Bremen. It may be hard to see in the picture, but the original “plant” was a chicken coup. The partners ran extension cords and set up a salamander heater outside for their “factory”. They started small and eventually moved into a larger facility on the east side of Bremen. (assembly line pictures) I also talked to Lester M who is the man wearing the white shirt in the picture above. He indicated that originally production was one person built the entire car. As time progressed, they were able to set up an assembly line in the plant which was estimated to be around 400 feet long. The picture above shows the end of the assembly line. Les indicated chassis and engines were purchased directly from VW, shortened, and modified to allow assembly of the Mini Mark. They also purchased “donor” cars to keep up with production. A donor car was gone through before starting its life as a Mini Mark.
I had read and heard rumors of a fire putting the company out of business in 1984. I learned that there was a fire, but it was in 1975, January 2 by DeWayne’s memory however the company rebuilt on the same site and continued production. Finally, in 1984 DeWayne took another job opportunity and the company changed direction getting out of building cars. The company ran under the leadership of Al Hildenbrand during those changes. DeWayne believes the molds were put outside at a new Bremen plant and eventually sent to the dump. Sad ending to the beautiful cars.
While talking with DeWayne he mentioned that Wayne Newton was supposed to get a Mini Mark, and that Bremen did a special conversion putting a Porsche boxer engine in it instead of the normal VW. Does anyone out there have a Mini Mark with a Porsche engine? DeWayne told me Wayne never actually got the car. It was built, sent to Vegas and before the presentation there was an argument between those who ordered it as a surprise to Wayne and the car was eventually sold to someone around Vegas. That was an interesting piece of history on this magnificent little car.
We found a 1969 Mini Mark a few years ago (August 2010), and it went through a ground up restoration of two and one-half years. I am amazed at the quality and craftsmanship that went into building the car. The fiberglass is thicker than most fiberglass cars (1/4″-5/16″), it is even thicker than a Corvette. The car is also a real head turner when driving it down the street.
The intent of this blog site is for owners and enthusiasts to share information on their Mini Mark’s and hopefully find owners willing to develop a Bremen Mini Mark Owners Club, keeping the great car alive.
Let’s see if we can find out how many of these unique cars are still on the road. I know there are a few that have made their way out of the United States. A handful have made it on eBay and a few even across Barrett Jackson’s stage for auction.
I have documented 102 cars so far that are still in existence so the estimated count could be closer to 400 to those actually produced.
The above article is courtesy of the Bremen Mini Mark blog site. http://theminimark.blogspot.com/