MINI confirmed earlier this month that the R58 Coupe and R59 Roadster will end their production run in the coming months. The question that came to mind when the news broke was what will be next after the Twins are gone? According to our colleagues at Autocar, not much.
Although this is a “read between the line” thing, a statement from BMW Group’s Sales and Marketing Chief, Ian Robertson, appears to confirm that MINI does not plan to replace the Coupe and Roadster given their limited appeal to current and prospective customers. This comment also supports MINI’s renewed focus with the FXX generation, but at the same time contradicts prior reports regarding the possible production of the Superleggera.
It is undeniable that the R59 and R58 are low volume cars, but MINI never intended to sell them in large numbers in the first place. What is equally undeniable is that these two cars have produced a halo effect on the rest of the brand. While it is difficult to measure the extent of that effect, I’ve met with a significant number of Coupe and Roadster drivers on MTTS that are truly dedicated to their cars. They also own more than one MINI and have converted friends and family into buying MINI.
As I said in the past, the BMW Group is quite effective at predicting future demand, and if a Superleggera – as a replacement for the Twins – is ever to see the light of day, this decision has probably already been taken and will likely be validated or reversed based on how well the new Hardtop and Countryman do. The kind of enthusiasts cars like the Coupe and Roadster bring to MINI fold is definitely a plus for the community, so it would be a good thing if the BMW Group managed to bring a worthy replacement to these two fantastic automobiles.