Mini Won’t Replace The Coupe and Roadster
File this one under “things you probably saw coming.” In a recent conversation with U.K. car rag Autocar, Mini marketing boss Ian Robertson suggested that the company is unlikely to build F56-based replacements for the slow-selling Mini Coupe and Roadster. Production of the current Mini Coupe and Roadster at Mini’s plant in Oxford, England is slated to end later this year to make way for new models.
It’s all part of Mini’s plan to move away from niche products and produce cars that appeal to a wider customer base. "There were a couple of niche areas we explored with the old platform," Robertson told Autocar. "With the new platform we are exploring larger niches - the five-door, for instance, opens up a much larger market than perhaps the coupe did. We will substitute some models for those with wider potential offerings. The overall lineup may end up having a few less models in it - but those models will have a higher sales volume potential than what went before."
When asked directly about the future of the Coupe and Roadster, Robertson deflected and reiterated Mini’s plan for higher-volume cars.
As for the better-selling Mini Countryman, Robertson confirmed it would continue for the foreseeable future, but the less-successful Mini Paceman Coupe’s days could be numbered. Both cars are constructed outside of Mini’s Oxford plant under contract with Magna Steyr in Austria.
Continue reading to learn more about Mini’s Coupe and Roadster models.
Why it matters
Even when they were first introduced, the Mini Coupe and Roadster seemed like fairly redundant additions to the lineup, and didn’t offer any real benefits over the regular Mini Cooper two-door and convertible. The Coupe looked more than a little strange, had less interior and cargo space and was marginally heavier than the Cooper hardtop. Pretty much the same set of criticisms could be leveled at the Roadster.
Emboldened by the sales success and popularity of the Mini Cooper, the company started filling market gaps that weren’t actually there, which was reflected in Coupe and Roadster sales. They weren’t bad cars, but they won’t be missed either.