Our friends at LeftLaneNews have the very first photos of the R57 2009 MINI Convertible. Due out in Europe sometime during the fall of 2008 (early 2009 for the US market), the R57 will take advantage of a platform that was conceived from the beginning to accommodate a convertible (unlike the R50 and R53).

You can see more below:

[ New MINI Conv ] LeftLaneNews

MF Analysis: With the initial development and engineering phase of the long wheelbase R55 winding down in Munich, BMW has turned their engineering and design skills to the 2009 MINI convertible, the next model to be launched in the new MINI family. The car pictured above (and in the linked articles) was built in Germany and is among the first R57 test mules finished. Expect another 8-10 months of development work to be carried out mostly in Germany (along with cold and hot weather testing) followed by production prototype work in Oxford late in the year.

You can read more about the R57 (and other upcoming MINIs) in the
MINI’s Future Models Revealed” article from last Monday.

Update: Edmund’s Straightline weblog also has a few pictures and an MF mention to boot:

[ FV Report: First spy shots of Mini convertible ] Straightline