The MINI Cabrio May be Built by Pininfarina

Interesting news this morning from the Auto News Group German Market News letter:

The new Mini Cabriolet may be built in Italy by Pininfarina.

The new car's folding soft-top roof system was developed by Open Air Systems (Oasys), a joint venture between Webasto and Pininfarina that was founded two years ago. Oasys is based in Stockdorf, Germany, and Turin, Italy.

Now Pininfarina may also take over production of the car, which offers seating space for four passengers thanks to its compact folding roof system.

The Mini plant in Oxford, England, is already working close to its capacity of 180,000 units a year. BMW, owner of the Mini brand, expects to sell 160,000 Minis this year.

The Mini Cabriolet is due on sale in summer 2004.

Webasto already makes the roofing system for the BMW 3 series Cabriolet.

Really interesting news. I was wondering how they were planning on solving the issue of production capacity since the only current MINI plant is running three shifts already.