The new MINI Convertible is a mash-up of everything that the new generation MINI brings (new design, technology, engines and build quality), combined with the convertible formula MINI’s used so well previously. While there aren’t many surprises here for the MINI enthusiast, there are some notable new features that neither the previous convertibles offered or other F56 variants have. Perhaps most important, for the first time, MINI’s convertible is fitted with a fully automatic and electronically powered active rollover protection system.
There are also higher levels of standard equipment on the F57 Convertible as compared with the F56 and even F55 four door MINI. In the US the standard MINI Excitement package adds LED interior and ambient lighting as well as a projection of the MINI logo onto the ground from the exterior mirror on the driver’s side when opening and closing the car. However the most important option that is now standard will be the 6.5” display which offers a level of interaction with the car’s technology that the standard four line monochrome display in other MINI variants lacks. Crucially it also gives every MINI Convertible access to MINI Connected.
Then there are the new trim options. As on the Clubman, the Convertible gets the “Chesterfield” leather seats which feature a cross-stitch pattern reminiscent of classic English furniture. However rather than blue these versions of the seats are finished in a rich Malt Brown. On the outside MINI will offer a new metallic color called Caribbean Aqua metallic somewhat similar to the classic Electric Blue previous offered.
While the top is an iteration of the previous MINIs, construction and material quality are up. Closing and opening takes roughly the same time and that crucial sunroof option is still there. However what is new is a MINI Yours option that puts the Union Jack directly onto the fabric top.
The new MINI Convertible may be formulaic but that’s more due to the previous R57 iteration being so good rather than the new one being so expected. And with all the improved dynamics and comfort of the new UKL based MINI platform, MINI has seemingly found a more suitable platform for open top motoring.
The 2016 MINI Convertible begins production late this fall and will hit US showrooms in early spring 2016. MINI Cooper and Cooper S variants will be first up with a JCW variant scheduled for release later in 2016.
Official Release: The latest MINI generation will now also delight fresh air enthusiasts among fans of the tradition-steeped British brand. It takes just 18 seconds to combine the further enhanced driving fun of a MINI with an intensive open-air feeling. For this purpose, the new MINI Convertible is fitted for the first time with a fully automatic, fully electrically powered and fully-integrated active rollover protection. Meanwhile the new generation of engines, suspension technology that is matched specifically to the model and a highly torsionally stiff body structure ensure a significant increase in both sporty flair and characteristic brand agility. In addition, the new MINI Convertible presents noticeable progress in the areas of ride comfort, space and functionality as well as material and workmanship quality, not to mention a large selection of innovative driver assistance systems. The car’s evolutionary design advancements strike a harmonious balance between elegance and sporty flair, expressing a distinctive character in both the exterior and interior that has matured markedly as compared to the predecessor model.
The new edition of the MINI Convertible, the first in the premium small car segment, embodies the most exclusive and emotionally intensive way of savoring authentic MINI driving fun. The upright windscreen of the new MINI Convertible guarantees a refreshing open-top driving experience on all four seats. The fully automatic soft top can be activated spontaneously at the press of a button. It can even be opened and closed during travel at speeds of up to 18 mph, while the sliding roof function is available at any speed. There is the option of a MINI Yours soft top featuring an innovative woven Union Jack graphic, available for a convertible for the first time. Other new standard features include the Always Open Timer with additional new display content, the MINI Connected System including an app with a rain warning function, and the 2-zone automatic climate control with convertible mode.
Two engines with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology are available at the launch of the new MINI Convertible. The MINI Cooper S Convertible is powered by a 4- cylinder engine with 189 bhp and a maximum torque of 207 ft lbs that goes on stream at just 1,250 rpm. The 3-cylinder engine of the MINI Cooper Convertible has an output of 134 bhp and a maximum torque of 162 ft lbs at 1,250 rpm. Both the standard 6-speed manual transmissions and the optionally available 6-speed Steptronic automatic transmissions have been newly developed for the latest MINI generation.
The standard MINI Driving Modes enable an individualized vehicle set-up focusing on either ride comfort, sportiness or efficiency in the new MINI Convertible, according to preference. Another optional feature is Dynamic Damper Control which allows drivers to adjust the stiffness of their convertible’s suspension.
The exterior dimensions of the new MINI Convertible have increased as compared to the predecessor model as follows: 4.5 inches in length to 151.1 inches (MINI Cooper S Convertible: 5.1 inches 151.9 inches), 1.7 inches in width to 68 inches and 0.8 inch to 55.7 inches. The wheelbase has been extended by 1.1 inches to 98.2 inches, while the track width has been enlarged at the front by 1.9 inches and at the rear by 1.6 inches to a total of 59.1 inches in each case (MINI Cooper S Convertible: 58.5 inches). The new dimensions preserve the model’s typical proportions while ensuring that occupants on all four seats benefit from a noticeable increase in freedom of movement. The luggage compartment volume of the new MINI Convertible is also significantly larger than in the previous model. What is more, stowage of larger luggage items is facilitated by the Easy Load function, which allows the soft top frame to be raised when the roof is closed, and also a wide through-loading facility.
There are numerous advanced driver assistance systems available for the new MINI Convertible. The MINI Excitement Package, standard in the U.S., is comprised of LED interior and ambient lighting as well as a projection of the MINI logo onto the ground from the exterior mirror on the driver’s side when opening and closing the car. The range of options developed for the new MINI generation includes the MINI Head-Up Display, the Driving Assistant system including camera-based active cruise control, collision and pedestrian warning with initial brake function, high beam assistant, road sign detection, Parking Assistant and rear view camera. In addition, the program of special equipment includes LED headlamps and LED fog lamps. The range is rounded off with exclusive MINI Yours and John Cooper Works equipment features.
The MINI Connected in-car infotainment system is more varied than ever. The MINI Connected XL Journey Mate provides an innovative form of travel planning and support. Other infotainment features can be integrated in the car via smartphone by means of apps and then used intuitively, conveniently and safely with the MINI operating system.
Exterior design: sporty, elegant, high-quality – the product of a progressive evolution.
?The exterior design authentically expresses the additional driving fun, technological advancement and refined premium characteristics associated with the change of generation in the MINI Convertible.
The new edition of the open-top 4-seater is the outcome of a progressive evolution and reflects a distinct character. Lines and surface design in typical MINI styling guarantee an unmistakable high-quality appearance, whether the soft top is open or closed. The characteristic balance between sporty flair and elegance that is characteristic of the MINI Convertible is emphasized by the elongated silhouette, the chrome band that runs horizontally along the shoulder line, the short overhangs and expressively modelled surfaces. The new MINI Convertible also exhibits traditional design features that have been further refined for the latest model generation. Large circular headlamps with chrome rings, the hexagonal radiator grille, the side turn indicator surrounds known as side scuttles and the black periphery around the bottom edge of the body all clearly signal the model’s kinship with the British premium brand.
The hexagonal contour of the radiator grille is emphasized by the chrome frame typical of the brand and also takes in the bumper trim below. In conjunction with the optional Chrome Line exterior, the lower air inlet also features a chrome surround. In the Cooper model, the ribs of the radiator grille and also the bumper trim that serves as a number plate carrier are finished in high-gloss black. The sporty appearance of the new MINI Cooper S Convertible is highlighted by means of an additional opening in the engine compartment lid and brake air ducts in the lower air inlet. In addition, the chrome rib of the radiator grille bears an “S” logo in red that is echoed in the side scuttle elements.
The hallmark brand proportions of the new MINI Convertible are clearly conveyed when the model is viewed from the side. After opening, the soft top is folded compactly behind the rear seats. This produces the classic convertible effect of an elegantly elongated silhouette. At the same time, the sporty driving properties and solid body structure of the new MINI Convertible are suggested by the powerfully modelled surface in the area of the wheel arches and doors as well as a side line that rises slightly towards the rear.
Sporty elegance is also conveyed by the rear of the new MINI Convertible. The large, vertically oriented rear lights are positioned far to the outside and feature chrome surrounds. These together with the robust tailgate handle strip above the number plate carrier, the strikingly shaped bumper and the widening of the body towards the bottom define the typical brand-style appearance of the rear view. From this perspective, the new MINI Cooper S Convertible can be identified by two centrally positioned exhaust tailpipes and a model-specific rear apron complete with diffuser. An opening surrounded by painted surfaces echoes the structure of the front apron with its black honeycomb grille and the externally arranged units for the rear fog light and reflectors. The other engine variants have a closed rear apron and a centrally positioned rear fog light.
In the new generation of the MINI Convertible, the tailgate once again opens downwards and can support a weight of up to 176 pounds as a surface on which to place luggage items.
When the soft top is closed, the luggage compartment opening can be expanded by means of the Easy Load function, which comes as standard. Two locking handles enable the soft top frame to be swung higher up than in the predecessor model so as to facilitate stowage of large-format luggage items. The luggage compartment volume of the new MINI Convertible is 5.7 ft3 with the soft top open and 7.6 ft3 when it is closed. This is approximately 25 percent more than in the predecessor model in each case. Thanks to the standard 50 : 50 split and folding rear backrest as well as a through-loading facility which has been widened by 0.3 inch to 28.9 inches, it is simple to securely accommodate skiing equipment, snowboards and other bulky transport items required for leisure and everyday activities. What is more, optimized sound insulation for the tailgate and soft top compartment enhances acoustic comfort when traveling with the roof open and closed.
Fully automatic textile soft top with quiet electric drive, sliding roof function and unique MINI Yours design variant.
The soft top developed for the new edition of the open-top 4-seater features optimized trim for the convertible top linkage, a particularly high-quality liner and a heatable glass rear window. It offers unlimited suitability for all-year-round use as well as further optimized acoustic insulation. For the first time, soft top operation in the new MINI Convertible is by means of electric power only.
For spontaneous open-air pleasure and a quick reaction to sudden changes in the weather, the soft top can even be fully automatically opened and closed during travel at speeds of up to 18 mph. The two operations are activated by means of a toggle switch on the front roof frame. When the vehicle is stationary, the soft top can also be operated by means of a button on the remote key. Within the space of 18 seconds, first the window bars and side windows are lowered and then the soft top is retracted. Closing of the soft top is carried out in the reverse order and takes the same amount of time.
The soft top of the new MINI Convertible also offers a sliding roof function which allows the front section of the top to be retracted to continuously variable levels by up to 15 inches. Controlled fresh air supply is also activated by means of a toggle switch on the roof frame and can be used at all speeds.
As an alternative to the standard version of the soft top in black, a MINI Yours soft top is available for the first time as a special equipment feature comprising an integrated woven graphic – an innovative and unique way to individualize the new MINI Convertible. As a reference to the British home of the brand and based on one of the favored MINI Hardtop roof graphics, the textile surface features a black and grey Union Jack motif in a high-end herringbone pattern. Another option is a newly developed wind deflector which is particularly simple to use and offers reduced weight. The wind deflector can easily be locked into position behind the driver and front passenger seats so to provide protection from unwanted air turbulence during open-top driving, while after use it can be folded down very compactly and stowed in the luggage compartment.
The selection of paint finishes has also been expanded to include a new offer. For the first time, the variant Caribbean Aqua metallic is now available for the new MINI Convertible. In addition there are seven other metallic and four non-metallic paint finishes to choose from. All body finishes can be combined with the standard variant of the soft top and with the MINI Yours soft top. Other customization options include exterior mirror caps and bonnet stripes in various colors and graphics as well as the Chrome Line exterior.
Interior: high-quality design for an exclusive driving experience.
While driving with the top down in the new MINI Convertible, all occupants can prepare themselves for an enjoyable experience. Intense open-air pleasure is ensured by the upright windscreen and the elongated shoulder line. In addition, the interior of the new MINI Convertible features a design that is both high-end and harmonious, as well as offering premium material and workmanship quality along with significantly increased space comfort as compared to the predecessor model.
The extended adjustment range of the front seats ensures convenient entry and exit for rear passengers. The extended seat surfaces and increased headroom also contribute to optimized space comfort in the second row. The single-seat character of the two rear seats results in optimized lateral support. The interior width at the rear has been increased by 0.5 inch at shoulder height. Rear-seat legroom has also been expanded by 1.6 inches.
Seats are also available in the new Chesterfield leather upholstery first seen on the MINI Clubman which comes in an exclusive new Malt Brown color for the Convertible. For an interior design geared precisely towards personal style, there is also a broad selection of upholstery colors, interior surfaces, cockpit fascia frames, Color Lines and other features including Chrome Line for the interior, and three variants of the MINI Yours interior style.
3 and 4-cylinder engines with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology.
The latest generation of 3 and 4-cylinder engines with MINI TwinPower Technology ensures increased driving fun and optimized efficiency in the new MINI Convertible. The engines of the MINI Cooper Convertible and MINI Cooper S Convertible feature turbocharging, direct fuel injection with centrally positioned injectors, variable camshaft control on the intake and exhaust side (double VANOS) and fully variable valve control in the form of VALVETRONIC, as patented by the BMW Group. The 2.0-litre power unit of the new MINI Cooper S Convertible mobilizes a peak output of 189 bhp and a maximum torque of 207 ft lbs that goes on stream at just 1,250 rpm. The immediate power delivery of the engine allows acceleration from zero to 60 mph in 6.7 seconds (manual: 6.8 seconds). The top speed of the new MINI Cooper S Convertible is 142 mph (manual: 143 mph).
The new MINI Cooper Convertible demonstrates exciting performance figures thanks to a 3-cylinder engine that mobilizes a peak output of 134 bhp and a maximum torque of 162 ft lbs. The sprint from standing to 60 mph takes 8.2 seconds (manual: 8.3 seconds), while the top speed is 128 mph.
Newly developed transmissions, extensive MINIMALISM technology, optimized aerodynamic properties, optional MINI Driving Modes.?The engines available for the new MINI Convertible are combined as standard with a 6-speed manual transmission. With increased efficiency, optimized acoustic and vibration response and enhanced shift comfort, the likewise newly developed transmission contributes to the sophisticated characteristics of the drive system. A gear sensor enables active engine speed adaptation for especially sporty shifting when accelerating and increased comfort when shifting down.
The new version of the optionally available 6-speed Steptronic transmission is more efficient, comfortable and athletic than ever. It offers both automatic and manual changes in drive position using the gear selector switch. For the new MINI Cooper S Convertible, a 6-speed Steptronic sport transmission is also available that offers very short shift times, can be operated using shift paddles at the steering wheel in manual mode. Both automatic variants have a transmission control system that is able to draw on navigation data for the purpose of gear and shift point selection.
The standard MINIMALISM technology includes an auto start/stop function in conjunction with both manual and Steptronic transmission, brake energy recuperation, shift point display and electromechanical power steering. In addition to the map-controlled oil pumps, needs-based control of the fuel and coolant pumps also contributes to the efficiency of the engines. Extensive underbody paneling optimizes the aerodynamic properties of the new MINI Convertible.
The standard MINI Driving Modes enable individual vehicle set-up by means of a rotary switch at the base of the gear or selective lever. In addition to the normal MID mode there is a choice of SPORT and GREEN mode. Adjustments here influence the characteristic curves of the accelerator, steering and also – if the car is fitted accordingly – the shift characteristics of 6-speed Steptronic transmission and the Dynamic Damper Control suspension setting. In SPORT mode, the overall set-up is geared towards active driving fun, for example. Meanwhile, GREEN mode supports relaxed and fuel-efficient driving. A contributing factor here is the efficiency-optimized control of energy and climate management as well as shift point display. In cars fitted with 6-speed Steptronic transmission it is also possible to use the coasting function.
Suspension: optimized technology and precise set-up for typical MINI go-kart feeling.
The increase in wheelbase and track width as compared to the predecessor model, the concept of power transmission to the front wheels that is typical of the brand, the low center of gravity and the high-quality suspension technology refined with numerous newly designed components provide the ideal basis for characteristic go-kart feeling in the new MINI Convertible. The combination of single-joint strut front axle and multilink rear axle – rare in the small car segment – and a set-up of wheel suspension, body mounting, vehicle suspension and damping that is geared in detail towards the vehicle characteristics of the open-top 4-seater guarantees not just agile handling but also optimized ride comfort. In order to increase component rigidity and reduce weight, the front axle is fitted with aluminum swivel bearings. Components made of high-strength steel are used in the front and rear axle as well as tube-shaped anti-roll bars. A sports suspension is optionally available which has a set-up geared towards dynamic driving.
The electromechanical power steering includes speed-related Servotronic steering support for maximum precision when cornering at speed and for comfortable maneuvering at low speeds. A first-time option now available for the MINI
Convertible is the Dynamic Damper Control function developed for the new model generation. Two settings are available to choose from for an electronically controlled damper set-up. In this way, the MINI Driving Modes can be used to activate either a comfort-oriented response or else a direct, sporty response to bumps in the road, according to requirements.
The Cooper version of the MINI Convertible is fitted as standard with 15-inch light alloy wheels. The MINI Cooper S Convertible comes with 16-inch light alloy wheels as standard. The range of special equipment features includes additional light alloy wheels sized 16 to 18 inches.
In addition to the anti-lock system ABS, electronic brake force distribution EBD, Cornering Brake Control (CBC) and the brake assistant, the standard driving stability control system DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) also includes a drive-off assistant, a brake dry function, Brake Fade Support and DTC mode (Dynamic Traction Control), which permits controlled slip so as to facilitate driving off on loose sand or deep snow. When the driving stability system is deactivated (DSC Off mode), there is an electronic locking function for the front axle differential known as the Electronic Differential Lock Control (EDLC) which selectively and appropriately brakes a spinning drive wheel on tight corners, redirecting the drive torque to the other wheel. A standard feature in the MINI Cooper S Convertible, Performance Control supports agile steering for dynamic cornering prior to reaching the threshold level.
Solid body structure, convertible-specific bracing elements, invisibly integrated rollover protection.
?The agile and secure driving properties of the new MINI Convertible are not least due to its torsionally stiff yet weight-optimized body structure. The convertible- specific measures to increase stiffness are torsion struts in the front and rear area of the underbody, selective optimization in the area of the side sills and a stiffening plate underneath the engine.
Highly resilient load-bearing structures, deformation zones in optimum design and an extremely stable passenger cell provide an excellent basis for keeping impact energy away from passengers and ensuring maximum occupant protection. In addition, the new MINI Convertible is fitted with a rollover protection system whose actuators are interconnected with the car’s safety electronics. For the first time, the rollover protection elements are integrated completely invisibly. As soon as the safety electronics detects the risk of a rollover, the two rollover protection bars made of high-strength aluminum retract within 150 milliseconds by means of a pyrotechnical trigger function, combining with the convertible-specific reinforced windscreen frame to offer robust protection for vehicle occupants.
The integrated MINI safety concept also includes front airbags as standard as well as side head-thorax airbags integrated in the backrests, 3-point automatic belts on all seats including belt tensioners at the front and ISOFIX child seat mountings at the rear seat. A tire pressure display for each individual wheel is also included as standard.
Driver assistance systems: innovations for increased comfort and safety.
The innovations developed for the latest MINI generation in the field of driver assistance systems offer increased comfort and safety in the new MINI Convertible, too. For a detailed view of what is happening behind the vehicle there is an optional rear view camera located in the tailgate handle. The driver receives even more intensive support from the Parking Assistant system. This optional technology uses sensors to size up a potential parking spot and helps steer the car into place with precise prompts for the driver when to brake, apply the gas and shift between forward and reverse.
The Driving Assistant option comprises a camera-based cruise control and distance control function as well as the collision and pedestrian warning system with initial brake function. In critical situations, the driver is initially warned by means of visual and acoustic signals. In addition to this, an automatic brake maneuver is triggered in the case of an imminent collision with a pedestrian or if there is a risk of a rear-on collision in urban traffic. Other components of the Driving Assistant include road sign detection for speed limits and also the high beam assistant.
One of the new features for the MINI Convertible is the MINI Head-Up Display. The system projects driving-related information onto an extendible display in the upper area of the instrument panel between the windscreen and steering wheel, where it can be read quickly and conveniently without the driver having to avert his eyes from the road. The information that can be shown includes speed, navigation directions in the form of arrow graphics and junction sketches, visual signals for collision warning, telephone lists and entertainment program details such as radio channels and track titles.
Features for intensive open-air driving fun: automatic climate control with convertible mode, Always Open Timer with extended display functions.?
In addition to fully automatic soft top operation, the new MINI Convertible is fitted as standard with such features as dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless engine start, and a 6.5 inch display with the MINI Connected and AUX-IN socket and USB interface.
Other optional equipment includes seat heating for driver and front passenger, Comfort Access, the Harmon Kardon hi-fi speaker system, electrically heatable and power foldable exterior mirrors and both interior and exterior mirrors with automatic dip function. In addition there is a MINI Yours sports steering wheel with a high-end soft nappa leather rim and hand-stitched seams as well as the especially sporty John Cooper Works options. The latter include a
John Cooper Works aerodynamics kit and John Cooper Works leather steering wheel with contrast stitching.
The new MINI Convertible elevates enthusiasm for open-top driving – every step of the way and in all seasons. It gives drivers an exceptionally refreshing open-air experience, inspiring them to open the top at every possible opportunity. This is reflected in the further refined version of the standard Always Open Timer. Its purpose is to register the time spent driving with the soft top folded back – down to the nearest minute. The relevant information is now displayed in the on-board screen. In addition to the total period of open-air enjoyment since the initial first drive of the vehicle, the function also shows an interim total which the driver can reset to zero at any time – rather like a trip computer.
Optimized visibility, striking aura: LED headlamps, adaptive light distribution, LED fog lamps, and standard MINI Logo Projection.?As a hallmark feature of the brand, the circular headlamps of the new MINI Convertible have a wide chrome surround with a clearly structured interior. The turn indicators are arranged in an arc shape in the lower area. In the standard version, the daytime driving light and the side light are generated inside the additional headlights, while fog lamps can also be included here as an optional extra. As an alternative, the new MINI Convertible can be fitted with LED headlamps. This option also includes LED rear tail lights. The LED units of the headlamps provide the light source for both low and high beam. Another option available is LED headlamps featuring adaptive light distribution geared towards driving situation and road layout and also an LED turning light. The optional fog lamps are likewise available in LED.
With the standard MINI Excitement Package, drivers can adjust the LED interior ambient lighting to a color of their choosing and the 6.5 inch screen is surrounded by an interactive LED light ring display which changes colors. The package is also complimented by a projection of the MINI logo from the exterior mirror on the driver’s side onto the ground in front of the door, activated when the car is unlocked.
New from MINI Connected: MINI Streetwise and rain warning function.
The standard MINI Connected system offers extensive integration of smartphones in the car, allowing the use of internet-based services in the areas of infotainment, communication and driving experience by means of apps. Operation is intuitive and reflects hallmark brand style, using the MINI Controller in the center console and the color display in the central instrument.
The current version of the MINI Connected App comprises new and exclusive functions to increase comfort and driving fun. The online search function makes it easier to find addresses. The applications Sports Instruments and Force Meter can be used to show information on the central instrument display such as the level of current engine power and torque in use and G-forces. The new Streetwise function provides the driver with tips for an optimum route even before the journey gets underway. Another new feature that was developed especially for the MINI Convertible is the rain warning function. In the event of potential precipitation as determined based on current weather data, the driver is sent a message via smartphone suggesting that the soft top of the new MINI Convertible should be closed.
The features of the optional technology package with navigation includes an 8.8- inch high-resolution display and the MINI Connected controller with a touch-sensitive knob. The system also enables use of the MINI Journey Mate app, helping the driver plan journeys as well as providing appropriate individualized information en route to the destination. It also features a real-time traffic radar function with highly precise and up-to-date traffic information.
Driving fun and fresh air – a tradition-steeped combination.
The new MINI Convertible combines features that have been typical of the brand for more than five and half decades with cutting-edge technology and the exclusive attraction of open-top motoring. As such it offers a contemporary interpretation of a concept that once instantly delighted fans of the classic Mini. It was almost a quarter of a century ago that the first opportunity arose to combine the creative use of space, characteristic driving fun and individual style of the internationally popular small car with refreshing open-air pleasure. The initiative originally came from a German dealer. The Lamm dealership in Kappelrodeck/Baden replaced the fixed roof of the classic Mini with a textile soft top, reinforced the side sills and integrated a cross member to stiffen the body. The people at Rover central office who were responsible for the brand at the time were so impressed by the quality of this conversion that they commissioned a small series of 75 which were sold to customers in the UK within a short period of time.
This spontaneous popularity among the general public was a perfect argument in favor of developing a convertible model based on the classic Mini for serial production. The result went on display as early as October 1992 at the British Motor Show in Birmingham. The first units of the Mini Cooper Convertible were supplied in July the following year. Its 1.3-litre 4-cylinder engine had an output of 63 hp. In addition to the soft top, other features ensured an appearance that was both unmistakable and exclusive including a distinctively designed front and rear bumper, broad wheel arches and side sills, chrome surrounds on the headlamps and number plate light, interior trim strips and a gear lever knob made of burr walnut.
The open-top classic Mini featured lowerable rear windows, too. And even back then an electrically operated soft top was available. There are also parallels between then and now in the selection of paint finishes. In addition to Nightfire Red and British Racing Green, the color Caribbean Blue was also available – an early precursor of the Caribbean Aqua metallic variant developed for the new MINI Convertible. The production period for the convertible version of the classic Mini manufactured at Longbridge plant in the UK came to an end in August 1996. Up until this time, 1,081 vehicles were built for fans of open-top driving pleasure.
Still unique: open-air pleasure in a premium small car.
After the relaunch of the brand in 2001, it was only around three years before an open-top version of the first small car in the premium segment was presented. At the 2004 Geneva Motor Show the MINI Convertible was in the spotlight – and shortly afterwards in the sunlight. With hallmark brand proportions and characteristic design features, it fitted into the model program perfectly. Its electrohydraulic soft top complete with sliding roof function and the upright windscreen guaranteed an intensive fresh-air experience on all four seats. The MINI Convertible exhibited outstanding functionality with its downward opening tailgate, Easy Load system and folding rear backrest.
The MINI Convertible was offered in three engine variants worldwide – the MINI One Convertible, the MINI Cooper Convertible and the MINI Cooper S Convertible: it quickly took boulevards and country roads by storm all over the world, as well as attracting a large fan community. Approximately 164,000 units were sold worldwide within five years. Its great popularity contributed to the fact that the MINI Convertible also demonstrated above-average value retention.
In subsequent years, too, the decision to purchase a MINI Convertible regularly proved to be a particularly economical way of enjoying open-top motoring. Going on the market in 2009, right on time to mark the brand’s 50th anniversary, the successor model likewise became an instant success in terms of value stability. The ongoing appeal of this model was not only due to the even sportier style of its design. A new soft top with heatable glass rear window, a single-section rollover protection bar and new engines offered considerable advancements in the areas of safety, comfort, driving fun and efficiency. Diesel engines were offered for the MINI Convertible for the first time. And the high-performance MINI John Cooper Works Convertible boosted open-top driving fun to even more intense levels of enthusiasm. The Always Open Timer was introduced as a new, unique and typically MINI option – a function which keeps track of the time spent driving with the top open down to the last minute.
The latest generation of the MINI Convertible now to a certain extent paves the way into the future for open-top driving in the style of the British brand. Like the classic body variant, the current generation of the open-top 4-seater not only sets a new benchmark within its competitive field in the discipline of driving fun. Its additional space and ride comfort, the new engines with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology, innovative driver assistance systems and both visibly and tangibly refined premium characteristics are all evidence of the maturation process reflected in the model change. Once again, the new MINI Convertible is a perfect choice for those special moments in everyday driving. And more intensely than ever, it provides the refreshing incentive to make the most of every opportunity to enjoy emotionally powerful driving fun on the sunny side.