MINI’s city car is real and will debut in concept form sometime over the next year. That’s what sources are telling us as new information continues to leak out.
The mini-MINI will be based off of the current R56 platform but will be shortened to original Mini proportions. Sounds like a perfect platform for BMW’s new three cylinder engine doesn’t it? That’s what BMW thinks as well and we expect the 3 cylinder power plant to debut in the new Mini city car before it makes its way to the R56 replacement’s lower model ranges.
What we don’t know is how MINI will alter the seating layout. Given modern crash standards a 2+2 layout that the classic Mini had would be impossible. We expect the small MINI (or Minissimo as Autocar calls it) to either adopt a 2 or 2+1 seat layout similar to the Toyota IQ.
Right about now you might be saying, “I feel like I’ve heard this before on MF?” It’s true this has been a rumor we’ve been reporting on for a few years now. However MINI’s corporate overlords at BMW have finally approved the concept and the expansion of the MINI brand. It makes a lot of sense for MINI to not only grow larger with the Countryman but also grow smaller and gain a true cut car.
Originally we had expected this car to share the new BMW iSetta carbon fiber platform. However due to costs and different corporate priorities that ideas has been ruled out at least for the first generation.
Look for the MINI city car to debut as a concept soon.