BMW Design Chief Adrian van Hooydonk chatted with the UK automotive magazine Autocar recently about the MINI brand and recent MINI design strategy. The strategy was created as a series of guidelines for the future of the brand and its products. The key take aways? MINI will stay premium, handle well, use clever engineering and stay design focused. Here’s an excerpt:

>The original Mini’s handling prowess on the road and in competition will influence Mini’s future direction. Its fashion heritage will play its part too, van Hooydonk said.

>”That combination of clever engineering, serious handling and fashion was very strong, and will live through in future Minis,” he said.

>”Because Mini is on the threshold of turning into a proper brand, we will be looking at a pallet of models for the future,” he added.
Mini will not rush into it, van Hooydonk believes, and the shared front-wheel drive architecture being developed with BMW will reduce some of the immediate pressure on Mini to increase its sales volumes.

But what about the forthcoming front wheel drive BMW and the next generation MINI being too similar? Van Hooydonk responded that both design teams had already created proportional models to prove both products can be visually distinct. On the performance side BMW firmly believes that they can create decidedly different driving experiences thought chassis electronics (among other things) that allow them to manipulate handling characteristics.

For more information on MINI’s next generation platform, check out our 3rd Generation MINI section.

+ Mini to launch “new chapter” / Autocar