MINI is about to usher in three new all electric models over the next 18 months, but the brand isn’t letting go of internal combustion engines (ICE) yet. For the 2025 model year MINI is heavily revising the F56 to create the dramatically refreshed F66. What is expected to be changed and how different will this car be? Thanks to sources we have extensive information from dates to colors to even individual options that will make the F66 feel almost like a all new car.
The F66 MINI Cooper – Background
First let’s discuss the name. Starting with its 4th generation MINIs, BMW is using the Cooper name exclusively on its smallest models. That means neither the Countryman or Aceman will have the Cooper name associated with it.
That said there will still be two distinctly different yet similar Cooper models. In an unprecedented move there will be two next generation MINI Coopers built (initially) on opposite ends of the planet on two different platforms. This move will allow MINI to offer innovative electric offerings while still selling to the traditional ICE market for as long as possible. But key to this will be upgrading the F56 to a more modern spec in terms of tech.
As you can tell by its codename, the F66 is an evolution of the F56 which is shared a chassis with. However MINI is refreshing the exterior design to better match the all new J01 electric MINI Cooper. That means we’ll see revised lights front and rear and even a slightly shortened front overhang. The key theme appears to be creating design consistency with the future of the brand – the all electric J01 MINI Cooper. The goal is clearly to unify the design language across all models allowing consumers to have a choice that feels strictly about the propulsion system and nothing else.
It’ll also be key to markets where electric adoption will be naturally slower. In places where population is less centered in urban areas, MINI will likely be selling a majority of internal combustion vehicles which will make the F66 and the forthcoming U25 MINI Countryman critical for the brand.
What’s The F66 MINI Cooper Going to Look Like?
MINI is pulling out all the stops to make the F66 as similar to the J01 design as possible. The goal will be to unify the design language across all models allowing consumers to have a choice that feels strictly about the propulsion system and nothing else.
Most don’t realize that the 2007 R56 was a major refresh of the previous generation R50/R53 chassis. However unlike the R50 generation MINI is only mildly revising the engine line-up to meet tightening emissions standards. So no new engines but revisions to the Cooper S specifically.
|F66 ICE MINI Models||Engine Code||Horsepower|
|F66 MINI Cooper||TBD||155 hp|
|F66 MINI Cooper S||TBD||200 hp|
|F66 JCW MINI Cooper||B48B20O1 (unconfirmed)||231 hp (unconfirmed)|
MINI also doesn’t need to fix any significant issues like they did on the R50 which was never engineered to BMW quality standards. While this will be a heavy refresh, we believe that the changes we’ll see on this refresh/next generation F56 will be focused on design and technology with important tweaks to performance.
The F66 MINI Cooper Models
Like the F56, the F66 will have two models spawned from it. The F55 five door hatch will continue to bridge the gap between the smaller hatch and the larger Countryman. Similarly the F67 convertible will be based on the F66 as the F57 was to the F56. Both will see the same evolutionary exterior updates and the dramatic interior enhancements.
Massive Upgrade In Technology
Plenty of new tech is coming to MINI in this new generation. The most noticeable is the massive OLED screen that will be the center-piece of MINI’s new digital experience. While we don’t have details on the experience yet, these exclusive photos show a radically new digital experience.
Here’s what MINI itself says about this massive change: At the center of the visually simplified interior of the upcoming model family is the circular central instrument display, a classic hallmark of MINI. However, in this new model, the circular central instrument display will be reinterpreted as an OLED display, making MINI the first car manufacturer in the world to offer a touch display with a fully usable round surface. This innovative design enables a minimalistic user interface that controls the integrated infotainment and climate functions, providing a sleek and frameless look that exudes high quality.
That phrase minimalistic user interface is exactly what we see here. But how does it work? While these photos only show us a radio listing interface, they give away many aspects of the layout and interaction. For starters the white line at the bottom of the screen is intended to mimic the latest versions of iOS which allow the user to simply swipe up to go back to the Home Screen. We believe this will allow for quicker navigation that feels much more intuitive than most in-car interfaces.
Beyond the massive screen there’s a lot to take in here. The switches and knobs (which are actually marked) are also identical to what we saw in the electric hatch leak meaning that MINI is moving to a consistent user experience across all models no matter where they’re produced or what platform they’re on. The automatic transmission gear lever is now going to be on the dash and next to it the return of a twist to start rather than a button. From there MINI will have its “experiences” toggle (more to come on that) and volume knob.
Right away we can clearly see a camera and sensor module integrated into the top of the grille allowing this next generation of F56 MINIs to make use of L1 and perhaps even L2 autonomy features seen on some BMWs. Currently MINI has only one vaguely autonomous feature – adaptive cruise. While helpful it really does one thing – follow the car in front. MINI’s aim is to introduce this technology as an option meant primarily for highway purposes and likely only on automatic equipped MINIs.
But perhaps the most pressing reason for MINI to upgrade the Cooper’s camera system is newly introduced EU safety legislation that goes into affect in 2024. More specifically MINI needs to comply with the intelligent speed assistance (ISA) requirement that has the ability to limit cars speed in urban environments. Yes you read that right.
F66 MINI Cooper Colors
For the F66 internal combustion (ICE) MINI Cooper, it looks like MINI is making some big changes. MINI is going heavy on the blurs while adding a pop of color with Sunny Side Yellow. Not listed here is Nanuq White which hasn’t been confirmed but is expected in the range as well. We also expect classic colors like Chili Red, Midnight Black, Nanuq White and British Racing Green to still be present but neither have been completely confirmed.
2024 MINI Cooper Wheels
The wheels we’ll see in the F66 appear to be very similar if not identical to those on the J01 electric MINI Cooper. Like in the F56 they will range from 16″ to 18″ in diameter.
|F66 ICE MINI Cooper||F66 ICE MINI Cooper S||F66 JCW|
|17” U-Spoke grey||17” U-Spoke grey||17” John Cooper Works Sprint Spoke black|
|17” U-Spoke vibrant silver||17” U-Spoke vibrant silver||18” John Cooper Works Lap Spoke 2-tone|
|17” Parallel Spoke 2-tone||17” Parallel Spoke 2-tone||18? John Cooper Works Lap Spoke 2-tone w/Sport tires|
|16” 4 Square Spoke||18” Night Flash Spoke 2-tone|
|18” Slide Spoke 2-tone||18” Slide Spoke 2-tone|
The 2025 MINI Cooper Colors (F66)
For the F66 internal combustion (ICE) MINI Cooper, it looks like MINI is making some big changes. MINI is going heavy on the blurs while adding a pop of color with Sunny Side Yellow. Not listed here is Nanuq White which hasn’t been confirmed but is expected in the range as well. We also expect classic colors like Chili Red and British Racing Green to still be present but neither have been completely confirmed. We’d expect that these colors would also carryover to the four door F65 and F67 Convertible when they are release later in 2024 and 2025.
F66 MINI Cooper Digital Personalization
Also driving this is MINI’s big bet on digital personalization. MINI is going all in on digital personalization with the next generation MINI Cooper, Countryman and Aceman. We’ve talked about the general concept but we now have some details as to exactly how this will come to life in both aesthetics and performance. Yes these personalized modifications have the ability to alter the way the car actually drives.
Drive modes have been around since the R56 and will continue with the new generation of MINIs. However on the electric J01 MINI Cooper, The U25 electric MINI Countryman and the J01 MINI Aceman we’ll see a dramatic increase in functionality. Called experiences, they will control not just the way the car drives but the overall mood. We do not have confirmation we’ll see this in the F66 but it would make sense given the features that it will be borrowing from the J01.
Will the Manual Transmission Be Available in the F66 MINI Cooper?
The short answer is – very likely not. Recently we reported that Head of MINI Stefanie Wurst commented the brand was “99% sure” they wouldn’t offer manual options on future products. To go along with this announcement MINI’s latest limited edition JCW 1to6 is being quietly billed as the last MINI ever to offer a manual transmission. We also know that when the next generation F66 MINI (the last ICE MINI ever) begins production in March, it will not offer a manual. But knowing MINI (and especially MINI USA) like we do we would guess that we will see it back in some limited form. Especially given that over 40% of all F56 JCWs are optioned with it.
The F66 MINI Cooper Production Dates
With the test mules progressing quickly, we believe we’ll see the refreshed F66 debut sometime in late 2023 or early 2024. We’d expect a tiered launch starting with the Cooper and Cooper S, followed by a JCW model. This will all happen in the shadow of the entirely new and all electric J01 MINI Cooper initially built in China and meant primarily for Asia, Europe and South America. Eventually we’ll see the J01 built in the UK and exported to the US.
|F66 MINI Cooper (ICE) / Oxford, England||Start of Production|
|F66 ICE Cooper 3 door||03/2024 (07/24 – US)|
|F66 ICE Cooper S 3 door||03/2024|
|F66 ICE Cooper JCW 3 door||11/2024|
|F65 ICE Cooper 5 door||07/2024 (11/24 – US)|
|F65 ICE Cooper S 5 door||07/2024|
|F67 ICE Cooper Convertible||11/2024|
|F67 ICE Cooper S Convertible||11/2024|
|F67 ICE JCW Convertible||03/2025|