Another from the MotoringFile mailbox that I thought a few might be interested in. We’ve gotten a few of these questions over the months about the potential for a new mid-range Cooper with the introduction of the next generation MINI. For those that don’t know, the new 4 cylinder family of engines (designed by BMW, planned by PSA and built in the UK) destined for the R56 feature a mid-range naturally aspirated 140hp engine. It would seem quite a few have taken a special interest in this engine and are hoping to see MINI offer it in conjunction with the new 115hp and 170hp powerplants also scheduled. Here’s the question (from Craig):

My concern is whether they are planning on incuding the 143hp engine in the MINI COOPER for 2007. I have put off ordering my next MINI because I wanted more power and like the style of the MINI COOPER a bit better than the “S”. Although if this is not to be the case for 2007, I am leaning more and more with each passing day on a 2006 MCS.

I wish we had a definitive answer on this. At this moment I’ve heard MINI will not be offering this engine in it’s initial R56 MINI line-up. From all accounts MINI will be using the 115hp and 170hp engines at the launch of the next generation MINI. While use of the mid-range engine was speculated (and strongly rumored from several sources) when information was initially released, we haven’t heard even rumors of MINI using this powerplant since that time.