Official: MINI Coupe and Roadster to End Production This Year

What was just a whisper a couple of months ago, is now a reality. Today MINI is announcing the impending end of production for the R58 Coupe and R59 Roadster. As you may remember, MotoringFile is quite fond of the Twins, to the point that we awarded the Roadster the title of best commuter car ever. Since we don’t know if they will ever be replaced, it is with mixed feelings that we see these two go. On the other hand and given how much love they have received from enthusiasts, it would not surprise us if they turned into sought-out collectors’ items in the near future. On a more positive note, if the Superleggera ever hits production, it would surely make for a worthy replacement. Godspeed, Coupe and Roadster.

Official Release: Changeover at MINI Plant Oxford: while worldwide demand for the new MINI 3 door and the new MINI 5 door launched a few months ago increases continuously, production of two model variants from the preceding generation of the original in the premium small car segment is about to come to an end. The two individual two-seater athletes MINI Coupé and MINI Roadster will finish their career together and as planned. In taking this step, the British premium car manufacturer continues the change of generation in its model program and in terms of vehicle production at the Oxford plant. The new MINI 5 door is now produced there in seven engine variants, as is the new MINI 3 door.

The MINI Coupé was originally launched in the “Green Hell:” the new model saw its world premiere at the 24-hour race on the Nürburgring Nordschleife immediately before its appearance at the Frankfurt International Motor Show (IAA) in 2011. The MINI John Cooper Works Coupé Endurance tackled the challenge with flying colours, underpinning not just the sporting qualities but also the reliability of the very first two-seater in the MINI model range. Ever since then the MINI Coupé has provided thrilling and intense go-kart feeling with its powerful engines, specific suspension set-up, low centre of gravity and a rear spoiler that extends automatically at high speeds. Perfectly matching its driving properties, the car’s unmistakable roof shape with integrated spoiler and flat silhouette give the MINI Coupé an aura that is both athletic and distinctive.

The latest evidence of the popularity of the MINI Coupé is its class victory in the “Best Cars 2015” reader’s vote held by the automobile magazine “auto, motor und sport.” Now the winner of the small car import ranking turns into the final straight – together with the MINI Roadster, whose career defined by pure driving fun and spontaneous open-air pleasure is now likewise to come to an end.

The British premium manufacturer was able to conquer an attractive vehicle segment with the MINI Roadster, too. The first open-top two-seater in the brand’s history has a textile roof which opens especially quickly, either manually or semi-automatically as an optional extra. What is more the MINI Roadster – like the MINI Coupé – offers an impressive degree of functionality with its spacious luggage compartment complete with through-loading option.

The new model generation also provides hallmark MINI feeling in growing diversity. Like the new MINI 3 door (combined fuel consumption: 5.7 – 3.4 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 133 – 89 g/km), the new MINI 5 door (combined fuel consumption: 5.9 – 3.5 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 136 – 92 g/km) also offers a choice of four petrol and three diesel engines, covering an output range of 55 kW/75 hp to 141 kW/192 hp. The latest addition is the extremely athletic MINI John Cooper Works (combined fuel consumption: 6.7 l/100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 155 g/km), whose 4-cylinder turbo engine mobilises the highest output ever seen in one of the brand’s serial production models at 170 kW/231 hp.

Meanwhile, MINI Plant Oxford continues to produce a guarantee of open-air driving fun. The MINI Convertible is available in three petrol and two diesel engine variants, and the MINI John Cooper Works Convertible is still in the running, too.

In the premium compact segment, the MINI Countryman and the MINI Paceman are likewise on track for success. The five-seater all-rounder and the Sports Activity Coupé also offer a large range of engines. What is more, both models can be optionally fitted with the all-wheel drive system ALL4 which was especially developed for MINI.

  • iDavid27

    I’ve had a JCW Coupe & currently a Cooper S Roadster – sad to see them go. Hopefully, if this has anything to do with sales, it won’t put MINI off making the awesome looking superleggera

  • fishbert

    I hate this.

    I know they didn’t sell well, but I had just bought an R56 S in 2009, and I was really looking forward to a Roadster with all the F56-generation bells & whistles as my next MINI. Hopefully the Superleggera will reach production and be able to fill that gap, but the Roadster hit the mark so squarely that I have my doubts that it will.

    A sad day, though, for sure.

  • Ian Chadwick

    Mini should be telling us what they are going to make and when instead of giving us negative information i.e. whats coming and when

    • That’s not how you want to run a business in a very competitive environment.

      • Ian Chadwick

        So your theory is that if I have 30k to spend on a car such as a mini JCW f57 convertible I buy the one thats available now, an old model, or buy a new bmw 2 convertible or similar and not wait for the new car if I had an idea when it was due, thats not being competitive that being stupid

        • You misunderstood what I said. As a consumer you can make whatever car-buying decision you want based on the information you have at disposal. But to protect its competitive advantage, the BMW Group has no interest in telling the world what model it is thinking of producing or when a given model is coming out. It would not only affect its ability to compete but also endanger its relationship with dealers who are the primary distributors of its products. So if I were you, I wouldn’t wait for MINI to tell its current or prospective customer when exactly a new model is coming out or what they have in the works; it’s never going to happen.

    • ulrichd

      If I read the press release correctly MINI is simply announcing that two models are coming to the end of their production run. Not what I would call negative information.

      • Ian Chadwick

        Who cares ‘ tell us what’s comming not going

        • Jason

          They have been though, more than most companies. Cars that are coming:

          F54 Clubman F56 Vert Superleggera (tentatively) Minor/Rocketman (tentatively) F60 Countryman

          That’s what is coming down the pipeline. How much more info could you want?

        • Ian Chadwick

          How about an approximate launch date before I spend my money on a fiat panda convertible diesel

        • ulrichd

          Who cares? Maybe those people who have been on the fence about snagging a current car since the new generation is not to everyone’s taste. That long nose would not make a roadster replacement as pretty as the current one.

  • sugurunishioka

    There were many moments in the last couple of years where I really wanted get the JCW Roadster. I still do contemplate. Now there is a very small mount of time left if one wants to have it made to order. I guess the same goes for R56 Convertible which is almost coming to the end of its life cycle, replaced by F57… If I weren’t actively looking for a classic Mini Cooper or S Mk2 to accompany my 2011 R56, I’d be extra weak against the urge to order a Roadster…

    • I can’t recommend the Roadster enough.

      • Don Meyer

        We jumped from our 2012 S Roadster to a built-to-order 2015 JCW Roadster in December. Felt like the window was closing, and now it seems it is. The S was great, the JCW is fantastic! Sorry the Roadster is going away, but happy we have our JCW. 🙂

  • minicooperracer

    Picked up my Coupe in October of 2011 and would not hesitate to recommend. If you are on the fence, get one now.

  • robble

    Was hoping for a 3rd gen F JCW Roadster =(

  • Jgh548

    We have a Cooper S Roadster and apart from the poor sound insulation from the hood, the hard ride and pretty crappy interior build quality, we absolutely LOVE it.

    So much character and so unique. Ideal getaway car for a young couple. Stick your bags in the ample boot, lower the roof, stick it in Sport mode and head for the sunset.

    Great car and unlike many modern cars (including the F56 in my experience), it has character.

    • Don Meyer

      Always curious when I hear dissatisfaction with the interior build quality. Maybe we’re just not discerning, but have been happy with the quality on both our Roadsters. Honestly would like to know what exactly you aren’t happy with?

      • Jgh548

        Don – it’s the continuous rattles and creaks from the plastic trim, plus the fact that the window rubbers have to be greased every two weeks to stop them rubbing against the hood and creaking.

        • Don Meyer

          Interesting. I don’t notice excessive creaks and rattles on this or our previous Roadster. Maybe only shows up after more miles than we put on the old one? This is our 7th MINI, so it’s also possible we are so used to the noises we just don’t hear them anymore! 🙂

          Oh, and as to ride, ours is so smooth I’m actually wondering if we did not get the Sports suspension we ordered. It actually seems to ride less harshly than our previous Roadster with the base suspension. But again, I’ve driven MINIs and other not-designed-for-cushy-ride cars for a long time, so my standards for a harsh ride may not be normal. 🙂

        • Don, you are falling into the trap of the small sample. I’m sure that there are Yugos out there that were fine. Those few (if they even exist) Don’t prove that the brand is issue free. Just be happy you got what appears to be a very good example of the model. Also, just don’t assume that every one made is as good as yours appears to be.

        • Don Meyer

          I agree that anecdotes aren’t necessarily data. 🙂

          That said, I feel like our sample size is larger than most – our 7th MINI and many test drives and loaners over the years. The counter point is we should not assume that every one is made as poorly as some folk’s appear to be. 🙂

          And as I alluded to, we also need to correct for aging as well as perhaps driving conditions. Our MINIs (with the exception of our high-mileage convertible) tend to be low-miles and driven on mostly decent roads. I think that’s a fairly likely explanation for our perhaps better-than-average experience as regards creaks and squeeks.

        • hemisedan

          No rattles or anything falling apart on my roadster yet, either. Even the top issue of wearing hadn’t occured either. I’m like Don, just need a little more room. And when you think about rattles (other than a loose seatbelt shich happens) a coupe should be quieter than a roadster like mine. It’s been s good car except for in town mileage.

    • hemisedan

      Funny, but my Roadster has a really nice quality about it, as friends that ride in it say. And many of those are not BMW or MINI lovers. As for ride, we took our little beast out from Iowa thru the Black Hills, down thru Wyoming into the Colorado Rockies for two weeks. While granted, the ride wasn’t BMW 7 Series, or Cadillac, my wife didn’t complain, and trust me, if she had noticed the rough ride, she would have mentioned it. Oh yes, we don’t have rattle number one, none, NADA, period. And this car is driven everyday.

      The r59 has never had a top rubbing problem, that I’ve noticed and while the plastic is plastic, hey it looks great to me. Now for the transmission, it is an automatic, I HATE it, and that’s why when the lease runs out next year it will be gone. Would I buy another r59? Probably note, as we don’t use the top down that makes it a roadster enough.

      • Kathy Rick Talbot

        Curious why you HATE the R59s AT? During a recent R59 S test drive, I found the paddle shifting AT to be near instantaneous. The AT would enable my wife to enjoy the R59 as well.

        • hemisedan

          Ok, here goes. First, I’m use to being able to control the automatic shifting with my gas pedal in other cars. That’s a big one. Then, while driving in the mountains, it would shift out of sixth gear to fifth, then to fourth without me doing anything by itself. Plus, the fuel mileage in combination city and freeway is running 22.5 to 23.5 mpg, whereas my JCW manual never got below 27 mpg, even in the Winter. i’m told that there have been improvements made to the Aisin transmission, but I’m thru with it.

          Last week I drove a Challenger Scat Pak 392 with their new 8 speed, expecting much the same as my Mini’s 6 speed. Nope, I could control all 8 gear changed with my foot, so there goes the 6 speed vs 4 speed auto argument too. Maybe they’ve improved. When I’m read for my next JCW I will test drive Mini’s automatic, but I still think that I’ll return to the manual. Everybody has their own preference.

  • Kurtster

    Now I need to figure out how to keep my miles low on my Coupe, as it may well become a sought-after model among MINI enthusiasts over the next five to ten years.

  • Nick Dawson

    BMW is doing the honourable thing by putting the twins out of their misery. It was painful to watch their global sales figures wither away month by month, year by year. So will the twins ever achieve collectible status? To become collectible, a car requires two things, RARITY and DESIRABILITY. Well, one out of two is not bad, but time is a great healer!

    However, we need to take a broader view to understand what is happening here. 75% of global MINI sales were previously accounted for by just two models, R56 Hatch and R60 Countryman, at 43% and 32% respectively. It took no less than FIVE additional models to make up the remaining 25% – R57 Convertible 7%, R55 Clubman 7%, R61 Paceman 5%, R59 Roadster 3.1% and R58 Coupé 2.9%.

    So, the Coupé was clearly the ‘runt of the litter’. But hang on a minute, if we add the twins together, they accounted for 6% of global MINI sales, which is more than the Paceman, and not much less than either the Clubman or Convertible. In other words, all five models can be categorized as ‘also rans’. BMW is a company that learns quickly from its mistakes, and the F-series MINIs are already looking more prifitable.

    • says a person who never has owned or prob even seen one in person… funny how us Coupe/Roadster owners have all but positive real world experiences. most think it’s a high end sport car.. and driving it was a total different feel than an R56 but then again.. all of the R56 owners wouldn’t know since they prob never drove one.

      Me, it will become collectible in the next 10 years; if not I’m still happy that i own one.

      • Nick Dawson

        Having previously owned two Clubmans and subsequently a Countryman, I flirted with idea of buying a Coupé and had an extended test drive in an S. I loved the driving experience, but even before the test drive was over, I decided that it was not for me as a daily driver. Nevertheless, I was surprised that it turned out to be such a monumental commercial failure.

        It’s good to hear that a few diehard twins fans are happy and really enjoying their ownership experience and, in the end, that’s all that really matters. In fact, now that used ones are at sensible prices, I might just buy one as a second car 🙂

        • sorry about the harshness of my comment, my bad. mini on fellow miniac! 🙂

        • Nick Dawson

          No problem! 🙂

  • Bob Lavoie

    I had a Spicy Orange 2012 JCW Coupe for 3 years 2 months from Oct 2011 (ordered new) to the end of this past Dec when I took delivery of my new 3rd MINI…a Thunder Gray F55S 4 door. Some would ask, why would I go from the 2 seater JCW Coupe to the very different new 4 door F55S??

    The Coupe was great in handling, performance, driveability…..everything most want in a MINI. But for me, now an ol’ fart of 74, it did have some negatives. Rear visibility, especially the rear quarters, was non existent. Although 1-2 persons traveling with a basic amount of luggage was doable, I found it barely usable in my own travels to the MOTD etc for carrying my stuff compared to my previous ’08 MCS hatch.

    So when the F55 (S) was revealed, I could see a MINI that fit my needs for both the handling, fun, & driveability I wanted along with the practicality & usability of a 4 door hatch without moving to a larger Countryman.

    For some, the Coupe may be the perfect fit, but for me, it was a passing faze in my MINI ownership between the 2 door R56 S hatch to my current F55 S. I enjoyed it for what it is, but now it’s time for a more practical but still fun F55S.

    • Nick Dawson

      Thanks for that Bob, very useful feedback!

      • As ‘grayghost) per my new Thunder Gray F55S (also Bob Lavoie or maybe my all gray hair), I’ve seen some comments about some Coupe and/or Roadster owners talking about squeaks & rattles or ilack of interior quality. I didn’t experience any of that with my former ’12 JCW Coupe. Not a single issue re those negative comments during my 3+ year of ownership. My main issues were the less than safe rear vis & capacity of carrying stuff on a trip. But it s still sad to see the Coupe & Roadster go like the dodo bird as sales have dropped to near nil!

    • This is a prefect example of why the sports car is declining in sales. It used to be that to get the fun, tossable driving experience, you needed a two seater that leaked oil, and was forgiven for it because it was so fun to drive. But now, there are four door hatches that get over 30 mpg that are really, really fun drives that hold four people and luggage if needed.

      • You hit the nail on the head! Back in the 1960’s when I was in my 20’s, I had 4 sport cars (in Fla & DC area)…all used except one….a pair of 1952 Jag XK120’s (a coupe & a roadster), a ’58 Porsche 356A coupe, and a new ’95 Austin Healey Sprite. All were lots of fun to drive, but all except the Porsche, had ongoing mechanical problems. None of them could hold a candle against today’s crop of autos (especially the MINI) in handling, performance, braking, as well as workmanship. The Jags could do 0-60 in about 9 secs, the Porsche took at least 12 secs, while the Sprite was even slower. Even the base R56 non turbo could drive circles around each of those 1950s-60’s models in all performance categories as well as quality. But I admit, those old ones were lots of fun in their own stark basic way. It was just a different era. We can’t & I shouldn’t go back there regarding workmanship, performance, economy, & especially safety that today’s car have. Also doesn’t mean we can’t have great drivability & fun in sitting behind the wheel of a MINI or other makes of today.

  • sugurunishioka

    Falling off of 1st page, but just in case someone comes here for info, I just spoke with a sales guy at MINI SF and he told me that MINI told them you have about 3 weeks (mid March for the latest) to order Roadster or Coupe if you want one built.

    • Kathy Rick Talbot

      We got our R59 S ordered this past week…was told April 1 was the end of status 112 now and not-so-patiently waiting for production updates for our Chili Red