MINI planning a five-door station wagon, a van and a notchback sedan

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 14, 2012

A BMW insider said that the Mini’s lineup by 2020 will include a five-door station wagon, a van and maybe even a notchback sedan, according to a report from Automobilwoche, Automotive News' German sibling publication. This station wagon will be based on a new BMW Group front-wheel-drive platform that will be launched in 2014 on the second-generation Mini Cooper hardtop.

The van is built on the same platform as the Mini Countryman. However, the source said that no final decision has been made on the notchback sedan, which is being considered for the market in China.

The source said that the Mini sedan is being “hotly debated”, according to Autonews. At the Detroit Auto Show last month, Kay Segler, Mini's global brand boss, said during the Detroit auto show that there will be three models that will join the lineup by the end of the decade but he didn’t name the models.

Presently, Mini offers five models but a sixth one – the Roadster – will set foot this month in U.S. dealerships. And in the first quarter of 2013, a coupe version of the four-door Countryman crossover, named the Countryman Coupe, will be launched. This model had made its debut at the 2011 Detroit auto show as the Paceman concept.

While the MINI Paceman Concept has a design one expects from a classic coupe, the brand has made sure to put in a new interpretation to it. On the rear section for example, it has a unique tail which complements the sporty quality of the model. The rear wings are both muscular and broad and at its outer edges are placed the rear lights.

As a result, it helps highlight the horizontal parallel lines. This also helps put focus on how wide the rear axle’s track is. Going to the side, new versions of the side wing and front wing allow the A-pillars to be emphasized all the way to the highly distinct 19-inch wheels on the front. Complementing this rather strong and sharp design element are the dark wheel arch surrounds that when paired with the matching side skirts underscore the athletic characteristic of the model.

A familiar design element that one can easily see is the MINI shoulder line which goes up to the back and allows the Paceman Concept to give a clue as to its sporting quality. Customers will however be likely surprised with the roof and glass treatment. Looking at the waistline, one can observe that the flat roofline starts flowing to what looks to be a transparent C-pillar.

The windows themselves envelop the car similar to a band of glass. Meanwhile the roof appears to be suspended above and comes in contrasting color. According to the brand, this is what is usually known as the helmet roof. With the windows narrowing to the rear section, it results in a more dynamic and wedge shape. Much like the rear section, the front gets the same treatment in that there are some familiar elements but they come with a very own unique twist.

Take for instance the radiator grille. While it is basically the same one as that in the Cooper S Countryman, the main difference is that the bumper has extra air intakes ensuring that the brakes receive better installation. New fog lights have been incorporated as well. For the headlights, they have been made larger and now have chrome surrounds that go the front wings.

Combined with the bonnet and its unique contour, it highlights the very impressive nose of the concept car. According to the Head of MINI Exterior Design Marcus Syring, while the MINI Countryman focused more on vertical designs, the MINI Paceman Concept utilized horizontal ones in order to highlight the width and thus give it a more powerful look.

Topics: mini, van, sedan

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