Autoblog Explores the F54 Clubman with MINI USA Product Manager

We’ll be hands-on with the new Clubman in a matter of weeks. But in the meantime associate Autoblog Editor Brandon Turkus had the opportunity to speak with MINI USA product planning manager Patrick McKenna about the 2016 F54 MINI Clubman in a video interview. While many of the features of the F-generation Clubman have already been reported here at MotoringFile, McKenna demonstrates firsthand features in action such as the convenience opening rear barn doors. McKenna also proudly mentions a number of firsts for the brand thanks to the new Clubman such as electric parking brake and electronically controlled front seats.  Most interesting is some hint of pricing for the Clubman in the United States when McKenna mentions:

“We are not at the point where we are announcing pricing but we expect this car to be in the mid-$20k range for the entry level Cooper.”

This estimate would put the starting price above the current Cooper Countryman, however the Clubman is furnished with a more premium interior and a much higher level of standard equipment including MINI Connected.

Head over to Autoblog to watch the full video:   Autoblog: Hands on with the 2016 MINI Clubman

  • RakSiam

    He mentioned it will be the longest MINI. Do we know how long the overall length will be?

  • EvanHVYWGHT

    It’s essentially the length of a Golf. A foot shorter than a Golf Wagon. So it’s still a small car.

    I can’t wait to get hands on with the F54. A manual S with a few options will hopefully hang out in the mid-30s. I’ll have to do some serious back-to-back drives with my E91….

    Can’t wait to hear MF’s first impressions!

    • Adam5

      I hate to say this (I’ve driven stick for 20 years and 11 1/2 of that in my old ’03 R53), but after having an F56 S with the flappy paddle shifters, that may be the way to go. I do miss driving a stick shift, but these flappy paddle shifters are fun. Check it out at least. You might like it.

  • ulrichd

    Likes: Similar to the 4-door, the longer nose looks in better proportion here than on the F56 hatch. The lower front fascia is an improvement over the Cooper S. Dislikes: The low profile tires and high ride height look awkward. Either lower the car or add some sidewall. Can’t stand the rear tail light. Looks like a consumer clinic design that has a bit too much Buick DNA. I would have loved to have seen a bold stacked design like the old Volvo R-Wagon. Overall impression: A safe design that will sell well but has lost some of the cool factor of the previous Clubbie. That pretty much sums up where MINI has been going for a while now.

    • lavardera

      I agree – needs more tire. Seriously, hasn’t this low profile thing jumped the shark already?

  • Nick Dawson

    It’s not a deal breaker, but I’m a bit disappointed that when the rear seat-backs in the F54 Clubman are folded down, they do not appear to make a completely flat floor, unlike those in my previous R55 Clubman.

    BTW, I like the reflection of the Mini ‘Woodie’ Traveller on the side of the F54.

    • Creed Cate

      I don’t know why you would think the rear seats won’t fold flat, care to be more detailed as to why you think that?

      • Nick Dawson

        Hi Creed – thank you for that. Examination of the second photo I attached of the F54 interior, reveals that the folded seat-backs are not lying completely flat, even though their head-restraints have been pulled forward. The horizontally mounted armrest on the rear door emphasises the angle of the folded seat-backs. F54 is after all a Wagon, not a Hatchback, so it’s not unreasonable to have hoped for a completely flat floor.

        The other photo is of my previous R55, the rear seat-backs of which folded completely flat, and would swallow surprisingly bulky loads, as shown.

        Nevertheless, this isn’t a deal-breaker for me, and I’m eagerly looking forward to attending a pre-launch viewing at my local dealership on October 30th 🙂

        • LTLMCPE

          That’s been a key concern of mine as well since the F54 was announced. The R55 cargo area is just so useful with it’s recetangular shape and flat surface I may be keeping mine forever.

  • Kevin Bartlett

    I’m really looking forward to comparing an F55 and an F54 in a back to back test drive. It feels like a touch decision between the two for me. If the F54 feels 95% as good as an F55 why not go a bit bigger, it’s still smaller than almost anything else on the road, and is one of the few manual transmission options worth considering. I’m afraid my next new car purchase may be the last of the manuals roaming american roads so I feel like I need to make a good decision ( a good time to custom order to get exactly what I want , not what dealers want to order ).