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Section: FXX Front Wheel Drive BMW

300+ HP From MINI’s New 3 Cylinder Possible According to BMW M

MotoringFile Sections: F54 Clubman, F55 Five Door Hatch, F56 Hatch, F6X Countryman, FXX Front Wheel Drive BMW, JCW May 4th, 2013 30 Comments

BMW 3 cylinder TwinPower

It’s all theoretical of course but when asked about BMW’s new 1.5L three cylinder architecture the head of BMW M was unusually candid about the possibilities. According to an interview Dr. Friedrich Nitschke gave to Car and Driver the new engine is capable of more than we initially thought. Quite a bit more. continued →

MINI and BMW to Dramatically Expand Model Ranges

MotoringFile Sections: F54 Clubman, F55 Five Door Hatch, F56 Hatch, F57 Convertible, F58 Spacebox, F6X Countryman, FXX Front Wheel Drive BMW Nov 24th, 2012 18 Comments

This post is also featured over on our sister site, BimmerFile.com.

In various interviews over the past few months, BMW executives have hinted at grand plans for the UKL platform. Reported by both MotoringFile and BimmerFile, the UKL platform will spawn an onslaught of FWD models. This will make MINI more long-term viable and will drive the BMW Group to greater economies of scale. Yet just how far BMW is willing to go with FWD, and how big the MINI brand will get hasn’t really been understood until recently.

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Next Gen MINI three Cylinder Driven

MotoringFile Sections: Best of the Web, FXX Front Wheel Drive BMW Sep 17th, 2012 26 Comments

A lot is going to change with the next generation MINI. The aesthetic design of the car will be part evolution and part revolution, and the underlying chassis platform was designed from a blank sheet in close collaboration with BMW. At the center of all this change is a new family of engines — not simply a refresh, but a whole new engine platform. It’s the soul of the machine, so MINI fans around the world are hoping BMW gets them right. As we’ve previously reported, the engine lineup for future MINIs (and a few cars in the BMW lineup) is based on a half-liter-per-cylinder platform. This will mean not only a drop in engine displacement from 1,600cc to 1,500cc, but a change from four cylinders down to three.

Perhaps “down” is the wrong way to put it, though. Doing more with less has always been at the heart of MINI.

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BMW Releases Front Wheel Drive Concept Hinting at MINI’s Future

MotoringFile Sections: F55 Five Door Hatch, F56 Hatch, FXX Front Wheel Drive BMW Sep 14th, 2012 8 Comments

BMW may have saved the MINI brand, but for years they struggled to create sustainable and healthy profit from it. More than once it looked like sharing platforms and engines would be the only answer. However, BMW being the last large independent automaker left decided to go a different route. Instead of partnering with another automaker on developing a front wheel drive platform for the next MINI they decided to keep it all in house and build it themselves taking all the knowledge from the MINI program to create a thoroughly modern platform and family of engines. It was and remains a gamble. BMW is as synonymous with rear wheel drive cars as MINI is with front wheel drive. In a sense BMW is gambling enormously with it’s own core brand to help MINI continue to be successful and remain sustainable as a brand in an uncertain global environment.

Today we see the first fruits of this plant in the BMW Concept Active Tourer. Make no mistake, this is a lightly disguised production version of BMW’s forthcoming front wheel drive hatch. But what does it tell us about the 2014 two door hatch F56 MINI that will be based on it? Interestingly, not much when it comes to exterior design. The basic shape is actually very close to the forthcoming five door MINI hatch that we told you about earlier this year. In fact it’s basically the same structure. But that doesn’t mean we’re getting a glimpse of anything overtly MINI related. What we do get out of this car is a look at the technology that we’ll find in the next generation MINI and the drivetrain technology. That said keep in mind that this is a concept and the all wheel drive plugin hybrid drivetrain will likely not make it to MINI. At least not initially. Instead focus on that 1.5L three cylinder engine under the hood. Look for that and engines derived from it in pretty much every future MINI over the next ten years.

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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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'11 Tesla Roaster 2.5 '11 Countryman Comparo
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JCW Stage I vs JCW Stage II
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'08 Smart Fourtwo
Comparison: '08 BMW 135i
'06 R53 MCS vs '07 R56 MCS
'07 R56 JCW (Stage 1)
'07 MINI Cooper S Long Term
'07 BMW Z4 M Coupe
'07 MINI Cooper & Cooper S
Audio: '07 MC/MCS at the Track
'06 JCW GP Long term
Reader Review: JCW GP
'06 JCW Cooper S Long Term
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Comparison: '06 Civic Si
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Podcast: Cooper S Auto
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Podcast: JCW MC Soundkit
'04 JCW MINI Cooper Tuning Kit
'05 MCS: One Month Review
'05 MCS Auto
'05 JCW S 1st Drive
'05 MINI Cooper
'05 MCS Conv. Long Term
'05 MINI Cooper S
'05 MCS Cabrio 1st Drive
'04 JCW MCS First Drive
'04 MC w/JCW Tuning Kit
BMW M3 SMG Vs. MCS
'04 MINI Cooper CVT
'02 MCS 3 year Review
Autocrossing the MINI Range


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