Every so often, especially after a big MINI announcement, the rumor machine kicks into high gear, and crazy future MINI ideas hit the internet. Before you even realize it, one person’s dream for a future MINI turns into an actual plan. Moments later that plan is “in development”, and then a few twists of some words, and it’s official, MINI is going to produce a new vehicle all together.
Future MINI Mill
Just a couple of days ago MINI officially announced the second generation MINI Cooper Countryman and a future Hybrid version. Already there is chatter of not one, but two new MINIs. One is a variant of the new Countryman. The other? The long rumored sedan that we’ve never seen legitimate evidence of.
Rugged MINI Cooper Offroader
Autocar is reporting that its sources have confirmed a variant to new Countryman is already in the works. The F60 hasn’t even hit markets yet. We know a hybrid is in the pipeline, but is MINI building an off-road version too?
They claim that with just a few tweaks, the new Countryman could become a dirt worthy, rock throwing racer. With changes to the ride height, and the addition of skid plates the Countryman would definitely look the part, but as production piece, we don’t expect MINI to produce a new model based off the Countryman for this role.
Instead, MINI might take a bit of insight from Prestige MINI (Ramsey, NJ) and offer option packages (factory or dealer installed) that enhance the production Countryman for more off-road abilities. Prestige’s “Adventureman” concept is a two stage package for existing owners to add to their first generation Countryman.
Like the MINI Cooper Clubman Scrambler, the concept of a tougher, larger MINI is fun, but limiting. For some, it’s exactly the MINI they want to drive. For MINI, the added production costs, decreased performance, and increased component failure is probably not a wise decision.
The Future MINI Sedan
The concept of a MINI sedan has floated around at least since BMW took ownership of the brand. Just a few months ago a couple of concepts were floating around the community based on a 2014 comment by Peter Schwarzenbauer (BMW board member) to create a brand with five unique vehicles.
Auto Evolution still believes that MINI is working on a sedan to fill the fifth spot. They did mention the MINI Rocketman, an ultra small concept that is not likely to make it to production. There is also the Superleggera concept that has made many appearances at auto shows. Given the successful launch of the newest MINI Convertible, the Supperleggera could fill a gap left by the two seat Roadster and Coupe models that were discontinued.
Regardless of the ideas that are spread around the internet, there is one important thing to remember… no matter what “sources say”, until a named BMW/MINI employee confirms the addition of a future MINI, they are just ideas. We agree that MINI may need to look toward a different style of vehicle to increase sales, but who says MINI needs to sell large volumes of vehicles anyway? After all, if we follow BMW’s 100 year plan, they envision a word were fewer vehicles are sold, and more are shared.
Follow @ThatMINIShow on Twitter for updates on MINI culture and events.