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BMW Group Sees Record Sales for 2014 But MINI Sales Remain Down

F56_Cooper_0001

The BMW Group sold more than a million vehicles in the first half of 2014, more than ever before in the first six months of the year. A total of 1,020,211 vehicles were delivered to customers worldwide, an increase of 6.9% over the same period last year (954,501). Sales in June also reached an all-time high: deliveries increased 4.8% with a total of 193,342 vehicles sold last month (prev. yr. 184,489).

As expected the recent model change means overall MINI sales continue to be down year over year.

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A total of 131,896 customer deliveries in the first six months of the year (prev. yr. 148,799 / -11.4%) with 28,738 of those delivered in June (prev. yr. 31,102 / -7.6%). However sales of the new MINI Hatch, the core model which began to arrive in the showrooms in March, are beginning to reflect the positive customer reaction to the third generation of this iconic car. In June, 12,862 units were sold, an increase of 3.2% on the same month last year (prev. yr. 12,460). This positive trend in MINI sales is expected to continue through the rest of the year.

Written By: Gabe

  • Robble

    In before the haters show up.

  • http://scamper.com scamper

    I love the Rocketman and the Superleggera concepts. There, stayed positive.

  • sugurunishioka

    I tried to like the new look as much as I could, but still no luck. I just don’t like it personally, especially the size. If I’m in the market today, I’d look for a late year R53 or post-LCI R56 instead, and maybe others are doing the same.

    I don’t know how much of the new look are actually affecting the sales though. I don’t think the general public and non-enthusiast buyers care much about the size increase or the different look. It still looks like MINI for the most part (at least from non-enthusiast point of view), and there are many improvements on paper. I think it just needs time.

    Speaking of the size, I read a Japanese article that 3rd gen finally passed the 1,700mm width mark so it’s now categorized as “3-number” license plate in Japan rather than “5” which means the 3rd gen is a regular sized car, not a compact car in Japanese standard. Kinda sad. :(

    • John

      “MINI, the car company that sells as many compact cars as Apple sells produce.”

  • one9deuce

    I came to motoringfile.com sometime in late 2007 so I missed the first year of reactions to the R56. Was the hate for the R56 from R50/53 owners as nasty as the hate for the F56?

    • http://www.nathanielsalzman.com/ Nathaniel Salzman

      Yes, and equally repetitive.

      • one9deuce

        Good to know. I personally liked the R56 better than the R50/53 which is what got me looking into MINI and finding motoringfile.com

        I think I like the F56 even more than the R56 and I will make up my mind when I get a chance to test drive it. Looking forward to it.

        • http://instagram.com/gabrielbridger Gabriel Bridger

          I think the hate for the R56 was greater in 2007 than the F56 is in 2014.

        • lavardera

          yes, but the irony over the F56 hate greatly outshines the R56

        • SPICYJCWCOUPE

          I didn’t join the MINI family until my 1st MINI…an ’08 R56S back in Dec ’07. So I didn’t know anything about the reactions when the R56 replaced the R53. How about when the classic Mini ended & was replaced by the all new larger MINI about 13 years ago???

          Since the difference in the 2 models was much greater than the changes among the newer generations of MINIs, my guess is the negative reactions were also much greater. Is that true??

        • Hemisedan

          I”m in the same boat as you, getting interested in Mini’s in about 2008. But, I do remember in 02-03 there was much controversy about the New Mini Look. Many said that the Suzuki sedan, even though it was a 4-door, was more Mini looking than the new Mini. But now, look at the Fiat. Yes, the ugly Fiat, it really has the 60’s Mini look more than the Mini does.

          While at a car show in St. Paul a couple of weeks ago, there were three 60’s Fiats there. Would you believe that I could see the similarities between the New Fiat and the old Fiat. I didn’t like the old Fiat either.

  • Mike

    I believe that mini is not “mini” anymore. in the 50s mini was a small car and the target group was the youth. The new generation r53 was a beautiful mini with the right length. the R56 was quite ok with the size. BUT f56 is not a mini…is a premium GOLF.!!! mini means small. worldwide mini fans love the r53 and r56 and rocketman size..not a big mini.Also mini means 3 doors. If i want five doors i would buy honda jazz…. I hope the next generation (4th) would be in the rocketmans size or at least R53. Then you will see the sales going up and only up.

    • SPICYJCWCOUPE

      I both agree & disagree with you…if that’s possible. I agree that having a Rocketman size MINI would be GREAT! But I disagree that having the F56 or the upcoming 4 door F55 (and future larger models) is not good for the brand. There are many MINI owners out there that need something larger & more ‘practical’ but want to stick with the MINI brand. I’m one of those people. Just look at the Countryman. Its sales are have approached the sales of the R56 & now the new F56.

      Likewise, with the upcoming F55, I expect it’ll do very well for both those new to the MINI brand as well as those that have been MINI owners for many years. That said, I would join others who would welcome a Rocketman size MINI in its lineup. It’s all subjective! Pick out 1000 current MINI owners, & their preferences would extend from the classic Mini of the 1960’s to the largest Countryman!

      • one9deuce

        Yes, definitely agree. I love the size of the R56 and F56 and wouldn’t want the hardtop to get smaller. But adding a Rocketman concept sized MINI to the line-up? That would be awesome! Then anyone who wants a little tiny city car will have that available.

  • Nick

    I’m not a hater I love MINI, but in my opinion the front end of the F56 is one of the reasons sales are down. Especially for potential repeat customers. A lot of them have decided to keep their old MINI or shop other brands. Just my opinion don’t hate me for it.

    • JMoney

      Sales of the Hardtop aren’t down though…the F56 is selling just as well as last year’s R56 and should continue to rise.

      • J B

        FYI. Selling just as well as the last year of a previous generation is not good, nor is +3%. A success would be double digit increases, at least for the 1st year of the new model.

        • JMoney

          Didn’t say it was. I did qualify “and rising” for a reason. The new 5-door should make a much larger impact on the bottom line.

        • J B

          I doubt it. Small four door buyers are generally looking for low cost reliability, which mini is not. People came to and lauded the mini for it’s driving characteristics, the 5 door with added weight will only move futher away from that…and also looks even uglier than the 2 door hatch. Its more likely to poach 2 door and countryman sales than actually steal sales from another brand. The next countryman redesign would be where they can grab alot more buyers. It’s funny they bring a 4 door when small suv sales just started beating 4 door sedan sales.

          Maybe inventory issues are still bogging sales down, or at least they better hope thats what it is.

        • fishbert

          As a tall person with no kids who loves the easy access and ample legroom of the existing MINI Cooper/S models, it boggles my mind why MINI would cut the front doors shorter and add more to the back.

          Maybe it makes perfect sense to shorter folks with families… but isn’t that what the Clubman is for? The existence of the 5-door model feels like just another example of MINI paying too much attention to those consumer surveys that already took away the center speedo and put window switches on the doors.

        • J B

          Yeah, I think the clubman will likely be the best looking of this generation. The front end just looks more at place on the longer car.

  • Martin

    The all-new third-generation version of the MINI was named Auto Express Car of the Year 2014 at a lavish ceremony in the Grand Connaught Rooms in London’s West. As well as winning the overall Car of the Year Award, the Mini was also named Best Premium Small Car. http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/mini/mini/87835/car-of-the-year-2014

  • Geepers

    The old Mini 1959 was not made for “the youth”. It was made as Britain’s (BMC) answer to the Suez crisis where fuel supplies were threatened and small European bubble (BMW Isetta) cars were being introduced. In fact Alec Issigonis is quoted as the Mini was made for the “District Nurse”. It was not for the youth market who were into Vespa and Lambretta scooters (see The Who Quadrophenia movie – the Mods and Rockers). As for sizing, well you may want to compare a Classic Fiat 500 with the New Fiat 500, the BMW 3 series of 1986 to 2014, and the Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic and Mazda 323 to the crop of today’s monsters. Then there is the Porsche tradition who have also spawned SUVs for soccer moms as well. I do not buy into the explanation of having to change the frontal area because of “European design rules” making cars safer for errant jaywalkers and pedestrians – the road is for cars not walkers! As stated in a previous article, the MINI F56 nose in some shots looks obstrusive – no wonder they were alarmed when spy shots were not flattering. I guess all photographers try for for the most beauty enhancing angle even with Homo Sapiens.


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MINI Model Cheat Sheet

1st Gen MINI
R50: One & MC Hatch
R52: All 1st Gen MINI Convt.
R53: MCS Hatch
2nd Gen MINI
R55: Clubman
R56: Hatch
R57: Convertible
R58: Coupe
R59: Roadster
R60: MINI Crossover
R61: MINI Crossover Coupe
3rd Gen MINI
F54: Clubman
F55: Five Door Hatch
F56: Hatch
F57: Convertible
F60: MINI Crossover
F58: Traveller

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