Opinion: Why BMW Can’t Afford to Kill the MINI 3 Door Hatch

Yesterday we reported on the rather unfortunate rumor that MINI may consider killing the iconic 3 door hatch. Throughout the web that headline garnered plenty of reaction – mostly shock and horror (and a few calls for our heads for publishing it). But the reality is there are some real storm clouds on the horizon for small cars – specifically 3 door hatchbacks. More concerning, MINI sales don’t seem to be immune to these market pressures.

What do we think? Rumors aside, do we believe that MINI Could actually kill the car that made the brand famous?

In a word. No.

MINI has invested everything in the hatch. For over 40 years they made it mostly unchanged. Then in 2001 when they re-introduced the brand it was the iconic hatch shape they chose. Three generations later it’s still the shape that most people on earth can identify as a MINI. And now MINI is introducing an all-electric car. What model you ask? The hatch. Yup, in 2019 MINI is introducing it’s most forwarding looking car ever in the shape of the MINI hatch. A modified F56 to be exact.

MINI has tied their very existence so closely with the 3 door hatch it’s simply impossible for there to be a MINI brand without it. Furthermore that type of brand identification is priceless and simply cannot be thrown away due the whims of a volatile small car market.

Mini 3 door hatch

Despite the rumors we don’t think the 3 door hatch’s days are numbered. In fact if done right, we think that MINI has a chance to ride out this storm and actually stand for something while retaining its soul. Something that is defined by history and by values that brand is founded on.