RAC Cars News


New Mini For 2014

By raccars Published

Next year will bring us the third generation of BMW's super successful Mini, of which details have been emerging, following spy pictures leaked online. A UK launch in early November 2013 will be followed by appearances at the Los Angeles and Tokyo Motor Shows later in the month, prior to release in the early part of 2014.

2011's Geneva Motor Show gave a good clue what to expect with its Rocketman concept. The updates remain loyal to the Mini's familiar design language, with black pillars, floating roof panel, bonnet stripes and circular headlights. However, some attention has been paid to the details, resulting in a larger front grille with integrated bumper, smaller air intake below and LED corona rings around the headlights.

A sportier profile comes courtesy of a more slanting and slimmer glass windscreen, while at the rear the taillights are larger and cutting into the boot. The rear bumper has also grown and rides lower than before. Meanwhile, in the cabin, the characteristic central speedometer will be modernised with a new infotainment screen in the style of the existing gear and higher spec models are likely to be fitted with BMW's iDrive system. The leaked spy shots showed a more conventional layout to the dashboard, which is something of a gamble, given that the Mini campaigns on its funky, retro styling.

Under the surface, the new Mini will ride upon the modular UKL1 platform set to underpin a number of future BMWs, giving it a more spacious cabin and, for the first time, the option of five doors. The modular platform is expected to allow the Mini line up to expand even further, with the current Paceman, Clubman, Countryman, Roadster and Coupe also due to be replaced. The flexibility of the platform architecture could allow for four wheel drive and higher displacement engines to be fitted to performance versions of the Mini.

BMW will also debut a new range of engines in the Mini, including three cylinder turbo 1.5 litre petrol and diesel units, with power outputs starting at 115bhp, before introducing them to its eponymous vehicles. However the Cooper S and John Cooper Works performance variants will retain their existing 1.6 litre four cylinder turbos.

Currently, the Mini flies the flag for British manufacturing, built in Oxford, but additional supply will come from the Dutch VDL Nedcar plant, to aid international ambitions for the car.

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