MINI has today unveiled the new MINI Cooper, featuring all-new vehicle architecture, an evolutionary design and a range of new fuel-efficient engines.
A £750 million investment across three of BMW Group's UK manufacturing facilities marks the launch of the new car with a new 1,000-robot body shop at Plant Oxford, the debut of new technologies at the steel body pressings operation in Swindon, and new machining and assembly facilities to produce a new generation of three and four-cylinder engines at the Hams Hall engine plant near Birmingham.
The new MINI carries forward its predecessor's aspiration to remaining the leading original of the premium small car segment, underpinning its outstanding position with significant advancements in all areas relating to driving fun, quality and individual flair. The evolutionary refinement of its design signals the more mature character of the new model, reflected in a significant optimization of such aspects as space, safety, fittings, materials and finish quality as well as sportiness and ride comfort.
The wide track and short overhangs emphasize the vehicle's corpus more strikingly than ever before as it sits powerfully on top of the wheels. The athletic stature of the new MINI is additionally underscored by the visual link between the front and rear wheel arches. This is created by means of a striking sill line along with a character line running above and virtually parallel to it in the side view. The two lines feature a dynamic downward curve at both front and rear, thereby directing attention to the two large wheel arches.
Traditional design features such as the hexagonal contour of the radiator grille, the side indicator surrounds known as side scuttles, the circular headlights, the upright rear light clusters and the black periphery around the bottom edge of the body are reinterpreted. Selected design features are given a particularly high-end emphasis by means of a novel surface design in their specific environment. The contours of the headlamps, rear light clusters and wheel arches are highlighted by means of precise edging. The visual effect of the side scuttle elements and the additional headlights in the front apron is enhanced by means of striking lines on the adjacent surfaces in each case.
The new MINI is the first car in its segment to offer the option of LED headlamps. The bright white LED units provide the light source for both low and high beam. They are also surrounded by an LED daylight driving ring, the lower section of which reaches down to the white turn indicators. Another option is an adaptive light distribution function that ensures optimum illumination of the road surface and roadside - depending on situation and route profile - and also includes a turning light. The optional fog lamps are likewise available in halogen or LED, according to preference. In conjunction with the LED headlamps, the rear light clusters also come as LED units.
Precise lines, high-end colour and material combinations and modern functionality highlight the orientation of the new MINI towards driving fun and a premium interior ambience. The horizontal structure of the cockpit and the circular or elliptical contours of key features such as air outlets, instruments and door trim elements are classic design components which take on a more sophisticated and especially high-quality form in the new MINI. A new display and operating concept provides the ideal basis for safe, intuitive and convenient control of the driver assistance, infotainment and comfort systems, which have been significantly expanded in terms of the functions available.
A new display and operating concept combines the typical brand-style look and feel of the cockpit with optimized functionality. Road speed and engine speed along with other key driving-related information is shown in the newly designed instrument cluster on the steering column. The characteristic central instrument with an optional colour display of up to 8.8 inches in size provides feedback on operations performed using the MINI Controller in the centre console as well as giving visual feedback on driving condition and on numerous functions activated by the driver.