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Wallpaper of the Day: 2019 Mini Cooper Cabriolet

Wallpaper of the Day: 2019 Mini Cooper Cabriolet

2019 Mini Cooper Cabriolet
Read our full review of the 2019 Mini Cooper Cabriolet and check out the gallery below for even more wallpapers of this updated beauty!

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2019 Mini Cooper Lineup Unveiled

2019 Mini Cooper Lineup Unveiled

Adding extra fun to the formula

Mini just revealed its refreshed Cooper lineup, giving us an early look at what’s in store before the pint-sized auto hits the show floor in Detroit later this month. The update encompasses no less than three body styles, including the Mini Hardtop 2 Door, the Mini Hardtop 4 Door, and the Mini Convertible, and adds tweaked exterior styling, more tech in the cabin, more standard features, and more customization options as well.

At either end, you may notice the Mini gets small updates to the headlight and taillight designs. This is especially noticeable in the rear, where the brake lights gain a Union Jack design for extra U.K. points. There are LEDs for illumination purposes, while the headlights get LEDs as an available option. You’ll also find LEDs for the daytime running lights and turn signals. Piano Black exterior trim can be had as an option for the headlight surrounds, taillight surrounds, and grille surround, while the body panels gain new paint options like Emerald Grey metallic, Starlight Blue metallic, and Solaris Orange metallic. New alloy wheel designs can be found in the corners, with sizing up to 17 inches offered across the range of body styles. Mini also updated its logo throughout.

Open the door, and you’ll be greeted with a Mini logo splash projection from the underside of the side-view mirrors. The funky dash incorporates a 6.5-inch screen, with the possibility to throw in a 8.8-inch screen if desired. On the tech front, USB and Bluetooth are both standard appointment, while options include a touchscreen and navigation. There’s also wireless charging for your smartphone via the center armrest, and more services offered through Mini Connect as well.

Look for our full updated reviews after the 2019 Mini Cooper lineup struts its stuff at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show later this month.

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2016 Mini John Cooper Works Convertible

2016 Mini John Cooper Works Convertible

The 2015 Detroit Auto Show brought a meaner and quicker Mini JCW hardtop to the market. Equipped with larger air inlets, a new front grille, a new diffuser, and more importantly, a new four-banger, this latest Mini to sport a John Cooper Works badge is also the most powerful Mini to come from the BMW-owned company. Naturally, the new setup will spread to other Mini models sooner than later, and the Brits will no longer sell JCW-badged coupes or roadsters, they just launched a convertible version of the familiar two-door.

The drop-top arrives just in time for the 2016 model year with the same specs and features as the Hardtop, but with the infinite headroom of a cabriolet. It’s more powerful and significantly quicker than its predecessor, and benefits from more options that ever before — feats that make it the fanciest and most potent vehicle in its class.

"The new Convertible has all of the legendary driving performance you expect in a Mini yet with interior materials and finishes which set a new benchmark for the segment," said Patrick McKenna, head of product planning. "Now with the addition of the John Cooper Works variant we have once again set the bar high for the rest of the premium convertible market by offering a high performance open-top driving experience."

The new JCW Convertible goes on sale in April 2016.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini John Cooper Works Convertible.

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2016 Mini Cooper Convertible

2016 Mini Cooper Convertible

2018 facelift adds drivetrain upgrades and new features

Affordable convertibles have been dropping like flies in recent years, including the Volkswagen Eos, Chrysler 200 Convertible and Nissan Murano CC. But, drop-top lovers need not worry, as there are plenty of exciting convertibles still on the market. One of them is the Mini Cooper Convertible, which received a redesign for 2016 and a mid-cycle update for the 2018 model year.

The Cooper Convertible is based on the Hardtop model, so there aren’t any surprises in terms of exterior styling, interior design or powertrain. Much like its predecessor, the current Mini Cooper Convertible comes with numerous customization options, which give it a playful personality that surpasses that of the Fiat 500. The new drop-top arrived in dealerships with the option of three engines in Europe and two in the U.S., but a couple of diesel engines were also made available. For 2018, the compact gained significant updates inside and out and a few revisions plus new transmissions under the hood.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini Cooper Convertible.

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2016 Mini Convertible Unveiled

2016 Mini Convertible Unveiled

Mini just announced details on the 2016 Cooper Convertible, and it promises plenty of styling and customization options, plus a wallop of driving fun under the hood. The two-door soft top is the first convertible Mini to come with BMW Group-derived engines and underpinnings.

Customizability starts with the exterior, where buyers can choose between 11 different paint colors, including Melting Silver (a carryover from the Clubman) and the new Caribbean Blue. You can also get the roof embroidered with an enormous Union Jack, if so inclined.

Speaking of the foldable roof, it comes with multiple settings, such as a “sunroof” option if you’re not looking to go full drop-top. There’s also an “Always Open Timer” to find out exactly how many hours you’ve driven with expanded headroom.

Inside, there’s seating for four, plus upholstery options like new Malt Brown leather that comes in diamond-stitching “reminiscent of classic English Chesterfield sofas.” The Mini Connected infotainment system and a 6.5-inch screen are standard, but buyers can opt for an 8.8-inch screen that throws in navigation and an app that’ll warn you if it’s about to rain.

Powering the front wheels, you’ll find either a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder on the base Cooper, or a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder on the hotter Cooper S. The three-cylinder makes 134 horsepower at 4,400 rpm and 162 pound-feet of torque at 1,250 rpm, while the four-cylinder makes 189 horsepower at 5,000 rpm and 207 pound-feet of torque at 1,250 rpm. A six-speed manual is standard, while a six-speed automatic is optional. Top speed for the base Cooper is 128 mph, while the Cooper S can hit 143 mph.

The 2016 Mini Convertible will make its public debut at the Tokyo Motor Show, which kicks off next week. Pricing will be announced in January, with U.S. sales commencing the following March.

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Mini Superleggera Roadster Will Compete With The MX-5

Mini Superleggera Roadster Will Compete With The MX-5

Even as Mini cleans house in an attempt to consolidate its product offerings, it looks like the 2014 Mini Superleggera roadster concept that was revealed last year in Italy made enough of a splash to justify the creation of a production version. The new model will reportedly see a launch in 2019 and will be a direct competitor with the venerable Mazda MX-5.

Mini’s boss, Peter Schwarzenbauer, recently told the U.K. publication Autocar that interest in the concept was so high, the idea of making a production version quickly accumulated widespread popularity throughout the company. Schwarzenbauer added that the new roadster was still “economically challenging” and that it was not 100 percent confirmed, but a lot of folks were pushing for its creation, including himself. “I think it would be extremely good for the brand,” he said.

The new car will be part of a future lineup of five individual Minis as a separate derivative of the Cabriolet model.

The new roadster would reportedly be built on the BMW-derived short-wheelbase UKL platform, which is also seen underpinning the current Mini hatchback. The platform would work particularly well for a car like the Supperleggera given its high rigidity and low weight. 

Rather than being a replacement for the older, recently axed 2014 Mini Roadster, the new Superleggera will be much more focused, with Schwarzenbauer calling it a “serious sports car.”

Continue reading for the full story.

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Mini Axes Coupe, Roadster And Paceman

Mini Axes Coupe, Roadster And Paceman

Amidst growing competition in the compact hatchback and crossover segment, Mini will stop production of its 2014 Mini Coupe, 2014 Mini Roadster, and 2015 Mini Paceman models. The move will help the BMW-owned brand consolidate its offerings as it attempts to justify its premium prices with a more upmarket product approach.

Shirking its previous strategy of adding a variety of models to help instigate growth, Mini will instead opt to focus on a core lineup of just five models. The brand will focus on model quality rather than quantity to help stand out against rivals like the less-expensive 2015 Fiat 500 or 2015 Nissan Juke. 

Speaking at the recent unveiling of the new 2016 Mini Clubman in Berlin, Peter Schwarzenbauer, the BMW board member responsible for the Mini brand, said, “This will be the start of a new era for Mini,” and that the brand is “...kicking off a new chapter where we’re going to expand into the premium compact class,” thus developing Mini’s “visual identity” in the minds of consumers.

Traditionally, Mini has been all about quirkiness and fun, but now, it appears as though it wants to take things a little more seriously.

This new ritzy approach is reflected in the changes performed on the new Clubman wagon. The new car is now much bigger, gaining almost 12 inches in length and over 4.5 inches in width. It’s also more practical, offering four full-size doors and comfortable seating for five. It also looks more upscale, with sleeker, cleaner lines and daytime running lamps in the front. 

No word yet on when exactly the Coupe, Roadster, and Paceman models will finally stop production.

Continue reading for the full story.

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Mini Superleggera Could Still Make it to Production

Mini Superleggera Could Still Make it to Production

Though it has been a slow process, Mini is still considering developing a production version of the Superleggera Roadster, according to a new report.

The roadster, which the 2014 Mini Superleggera Vision previewed, has been a bit on and off as of late, but this report indicates that the automaker is still trying to build a business case for the niche roadster. According to Peter Schwarzenbauer, head of the Mini, Rolls-Royce and BMW Motorcycle brands, “...the interest was tremendous when we showed this concept car. I think also the technological part is extremely interesting because we are working on electrification for Mini.”

Though there is still plenty of interest, Schwarzenbauer made it clear that a decision on its production future is still up in the air because it is “an economically challenging project.” This comes as no surprise, as the Superleggera is nothing like its potential siblings, despite sharing a basic design language. Whereas other Mini models are gasoline powered and have a squashed-hatchback look, the Superleggera is slated to have an electric powertrain and proportions that no Mini before it has had.

So for now we just wait and see if Mini and BMW can come up with a good reason to build this tiny sports car. If it did make its way to the production line, initial estimates put it at around €35,000 ($39,375 as of 2015). At this price point, it could give higher-end Miata shoppers something to think about, particularly those who prefer alternative fuels.

With more than a year in the books since the concept debuted, look for Mini to make a decision soon or risk losing momentum.

Continue reading for the full story.

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Mini Cooper S Convertible Driving Open Top: Spy Shots

Mini Cooper S Convertible Driving Open Top: Spy Shots

Even before the third-generation Mini Cooper Hardtop was unveiled in late 2013, spy photographers had already captured pictures of the drop-top variant wearing light camouflage. Now, with the 2016 Mini Cooper Convertible getting closer to its unspecified on-sale date, our photographers have once again caught up with the cute convertible only this time Mini’s engineers are testing the car with the soft top fully retracted.

It’s no surprise that the styling of the new Cooper Convertible won’t differ too much from the two-door Cooper it is based on, but there is one key area where the 2016 Cooper Convertible will vary from the current convertible. From what there is to see in these images, the more rounded tailgate and added rear overhang should help improve the Convertible’s cargo capacity. One of the images even shows the current convertible right alongside the 2016 model, giving a better comparison of the two cars’ rumps.

Speaking of the rear end, this car is definitely the Cooper S Convertible as evident from the center-mounted exhaust outlets. This means that the 189-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder will add even more fun to the top-down driving experience.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Mini Cooper Convertible.

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Mini Superleggera Vision Should Arrive in 2018

Mini Superleggera Vision Should Arrive in 2018

Mini is planning to release a lightweight roadster based on the Supperleggera Vision concept first unveiled last year at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este last year. UK-based publication CAR recently broke the news, garnered from unidentified sources, stating the new two-door drop-top has received the go-ahead for production sometime in early 2018. 

This coincides with a much-needed refresh which sees Mini reducing its lineup to five core models, eschewing the previous broad niche focus going into a third generation. The new-gen stable is expected to include a three-door hatchback, five-door hatchback, the Countryman, the Clubman, and now, a superleggera two-seater.

The Paceman, Coupe and Roadster are all expected to get the axe. 

While the concept vehicle originally came equipped with a hybrid AWD driveline featuring an electric motor driving the front wheels and a gas-powered engine driving the rear wheels, CAR says the production version will most likely be fitted with an assortment of three- and four-cylinder powerplants, including a top-range, 189-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo stuffed into a Superleggera Cooper S. 

Mini has been dragging its feet when it comes to updating its lineup, and if CAR’s inside sources turn out to be correct, a superleggera Mini will be most welcome indeed. “Despite certain type approval-related modifications, the production version is said to retain the character and charisma of the 2014 concept car,” CAR says.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini Superleggera Vision.

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Mini JCW Convertible Shows Some Skin: Spy Shots

Mini JCW Convertible Shows Some Skin: Spy Shots

When Mini introduced the new John Cooper Works Hardtop model at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show we had no idea the BMW-owned brand was also working on a convertible model. That became apparent about a month later when a camouflaged Mini Convertible wearing a front bumper identical to the JCW Hardtop was spotted by our trusty paparazzi. And while Mini still hasn’t confirmed there’s a JCW drop-top underway, a second test car sporting the aggressive fascia we’ve seen on the hatchback back in January hit the streets for more real-world action. This time around, the prototype is painted red and, more importantly, most of the camouflage is gone.

With no black-and-yellow tape covering the front bumper, I’m now 100-percent positive this is indeed the soft-top version of the nippy JCW Hardtop. Yes, there are important details missing, such as the racing stripes on the engine hood, the JCW badge on the grille and the unique, two-tone wheels, but these features will likely appear as the vehicle moves closer to production.

As a brief reminder, all these JCW-specific goodies will come alongside a new 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine rated at 228 turbocharged horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque. That’s a 20-horse and 29-pound-feet increase over the previous model, making the new JCW the most powerful production Mini ever, as of 2015. Expect those numbers to translate into six-second 0-to-60 sprints and top speeds in excess of 150 mph.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini JCW Convertible.

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Mini Won't Replace The Coupe and Roadster

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.

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Patent Images of a Production-Ready Mini Superleggera Roadster Hits the Internet

Patent Images of a Production-Ready Mini Superleggera Roadster Hits the Internet

Mini’s decision to scrap the Coupe and Roadster models was initially believed to be part of a plan to clean up the clutter of its model lineup. Well, now it looks like the German automaker had other reasons in taking those steps. Maybe it was being a little sneaky and doing a little addition by subtraction, eliminating the Coupe and Roadster to give way to the production version of the Superleggera Concept.

The emergence of patent renderings of a car that is nearly identical to the Superleggera adds some weight to rumors that Mini’s giving the green light to build a halo model for the brand. Granted, Mini has yet to confirm any plans to build a production version of the Superleggera, but these renderings are good indications that the German automaker may be going down that road.

The styling of the production model is largely similar to the concept, albeit with a few modifications like the elimination of the rally-style lamps integrated into the concept’s grille. The images also show a secured windshield and nothing like the flimsy interpretation on the concept. The mirror arms are also shorter and thicker, something most production Minis have in their design profiles. On the flip-side, the renderings also show some design elements that were clearly taken from the concept including the extractor vents on the hood, the fin in the center of the trunk lid, and the taillight design that’s actually a clever homage to the Union Jack.

A production model of the Superleggera is also likely to carry a standard engine in place of the electric powertrain fitted into the concept version. It’s unclear what kind of powertrain Mini plans on using on a potential production version of the Superleggera but my best guess includes the same three- and four-cylinder engines that are currently used by Mini models. We’re also not shutting down the possibility of a range-topping John Cooper Works version for the car that will carry the same 2.0-liter engine as the new JCW model.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mini Superleggera Vision Concept.

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Mini Coupe and Roadster Will be Discontinued After 2015

Mini Coupe and Roadster Will be Discontinued After 2015

Humility has never been one of Mini’s strong suits, so it must be tough for the German automaker to admit when it messed up. Unfortunately for Mini, one of those times occurred at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show when Mini USA product boss Patrick McKenna told AutoGuide that the company’s Coupe and Roadster models will be discontinued after next year.

According to McKenna, both the Coupe and Roadster are being axed because of their disappointing sales numbers. This news doesn’t come as a surprise to all those who never warmed up to the two models because they were too similar to the hardtop and convertible versions of the Cooper. Mini tried to distinguish the Coupe and Roadster with their design offerings, but customers never took the bait.

In their eyes, paying a premium for the Coupe and Roadster made no sense when they could get pretty much everything the two models offered from the hardtop and convertible versions of the Cooper. All at a price that was at least a few thousand dollars cheaper than the Coupe and Roadster models.

Take for example the difference between the two-door 2014 Mini Cooper and the Coupe. The former starts at $20,700 while the latter starts at $22,000. The pricing difference between the Cooper Convertible and the Roadster isn’t that big — $25,700 compared to $26,100 — but the point is clear: there’s no room for the Coupe and Roadster when the two-door Cooper and the Cooper Convertible are already entrenched in the lineup.

So Mini’s doing the prudent thing by dropping the Coupe and Roadster together after 2015. In doing so, the German automaker is learning an important lesson. You can’t always win all your battles.

Click past the jump to read more about Mini Coupe And Roadster.

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2016 Mini Superleggera

2016 Mini Superleggera

Mini has never built anything aside from countless iterations of the Cooper, but that could change over the next couple of years if the BMW board approves production of the Superleggera Vision Concept.

Showcased with great success at the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este, the lightweight roadster was created in cooperation with Italian design house Touring Superleggera and a production version may arrive just in time to drag Mini out of its decade-long design hole.

Of course, the study borrows a few cues from the 2014 Cooper design language, but the overall approach is entirely different, with a new feel attached to it. It’s no longer feeding on the classic Mini, but relying on the same British heritage that spawned sports cars such as the Jaguar F-Type. The rear body fin, the low-cut windshield are there to tell us about a classic, sporty Mini that never existed.

Will these cool features make production? Probably not. But this concept car has huge potential and Mini has all the necessary instruments to take on a brand-new market. Because of its coolness and the possibility of production, we created a rendering of what we think this car may look like if it hits dealerships (above).

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Mini Superleggera.

*Note: Above image is a TopSpeed rendering, not the actual Mini Superleggera.

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Mini Superleggera Vision Concept Could Make It To Production

Mini Superleggera Vision Concept Could Make It To Production

In general I like the cars that Mini makes, but I despise the iterative nature of its designs and its constant collection of “different” models and trim levels. Taking one basic car and turning it into one-hundred and eleventy different models is silly and annoying. That said, Mini’s latest concept creation, the Superleggera Vision Concept, is every bit as interesting as it is stunning to look at. It feels like the first true new Mini design since the brand returned in 2003. With a collection of retro cues and futuristic design touches, the car is a truly inspirational design.

I am not the only person who feels that this should be the new future direction of Mini design, and now rumor has it that Mini could actually build it.

The story comes from Automotive News, which cites information provided by Mini boss Peter Schwarzenbauer at the car’s unveiling. Schwarzenbauer said the car was created to see how well the Mini fans would respond to something that looked like a radical departure from the brand’s traditional design. His words were, “It has received overwhelming appreciation.” He also said he could see a production version of this roadster if the BMW board approves the project.

Here is to hoping.

Click past the jump to read more about the Mini Superleggera Vision Concept.

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