Expect the next generation MINI to debut in the form of an extended wheelbase concept and not the hardtop coupe which will be released late next year. That appears to be the word from the inside (and confirmed by Autoweek). Jordan (a Mini2 member from the UK) has acquired the following statement from a MINI/BMW Source:

Yes this (the extended wheel base MINI) will be unveiled next Monday at the IAA (Frankfurt Autoshow). The car will be the next generation MINI or at least a variant of it. But with the success of the current MINI, we are now able to be more adventurous and flexible with MINI.

While the image above is only an Auto Bild rendering of what we may see, it appear that the general shape is spot on based on the spy photos we’ve recently seen.

According to the same source the much rumored special edition MCS lightweight will also be debuting at Frankfurt on Monday. We’ll have a few more bits of info on that car tomorrow.

There’s no word on when the final official 2007 MINI (the R56) will debut in it’s standard hardtop coupe form… but the Geneva autoshow in March would be a good guess. Regardless, we’ll keep you updated in the days and months ahead on all things R56.


[ Extended Wheel Base MINI Spotted Testing ] MotoringFile

[ Autoweek’s Take on the MINI Wagon ] MotoringFile

[ Next Generation MINI Revealed ] MotoringFile