view thumbnails grid view horizontal compact blog view
2020 Mini Cooper EV

2020 Mini Cooper EV

Will it be a breakthrough car for Mini, or just another BMW i3 reincarnate?

Mini has officially entered the EV fray, and we have finally uncovered the proof. To be honest, Mini Cooper is one of the very few cars from the current combustion-engined crop that could slip into an EV avatar without any cosmetic changes. We have seen automakers going bonkers with the so-called ’futuristic’ designs with slim headlights, sharp cut lines, etc. But in contrast, the Mini Cooper gels well with those electric cars with its retro, rounded looks, and Mini seems to understand that. The 2020 Mini Cooper SE has been spotted sans camo doing some all-electric testing. This electric Mini is based on the Cooper S and looks largely similar to it albeit with a few minor changes. Will the retro-looking Mini Cooper SE make a name for itself in arguably the most competitive segment in the right now?

Read more
2020 MINI John Cooper Works GP

2020 MINI John Cooper Works GP

The fastest Mini ever is just around the corner with maxi performance

Mini is a company that should be taken seriously when it sets about building a performance car. That’s why we stood up and listened when, late last year, we heard that the Mini Cooper JCW GP was coming back in 2020 after what will be a seven-year hiatus. Now, we’re seeing the first spy shots and, as you’d expect, it’s the Cooper JCW dialed up to 11 with some cues ported straight from the devilishly cool 2017 Cooper Works GP Concept. We want it now, together with its +300 horsepower!

Traditionally, the GP version of the Cooper Works is the ultimate performance model. In the past, John Cooper Works, which is long for JCW, built two GP models based on the previous two generations of the Mini. Of the last GP, which bowed out in 2014, only 2,000 examples exist, and just 500 were sold in the U.S., so expect the new model to also be a rare bird. Talking about birds, the GP will once again mark the swansong of the third-generation Mini Hatch with a new one coming soon.

Update 04/08/2019: We’ve managed to catch the 2020 Mini John Cooper Works GP doing some last minute spring testing prior to its debut. Check out our latest spy shots and what we know in the spy shots section below.

Read more
2017 MINI Electric Concept

2017 MINI Electric Concept

Previews a production model that will arrive in 2019

The modern Mini Cooper was launched in 2001, some 42 years after the British firm launched the original model. This time build under BMW Group ownership, the Mini became more of a fashion statement rather than an affordable, people’s car, but this is exactly what turned it into a big hit. Redesigned in 2006 and 2013, the Cooper grew larger and larger and gained more technology with each generation. In 2017, Mini introduced its first hybrid model, the S E Countryman All4, and it’s now looking to launch its first-ever electric car. And it just unveiled the Mini Electric Concept ahead of the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Designed as a preview for a production model that will be introduced in 2019, the Mini Electric Concept arrives almost ten year since Mini built its first EV, the Mini E. More of a demonstration vehicle rather than a production car, the Mini E was produced between 2009 and 2010 in the form of a three-door Cooper. More than 600 cars were deployed in several countries for on-road testing in a project that eventually led to a couple of BMW trial cars and finally the i3. A modern reinterpretation of the Mini E, the Electric Concept moves Mini one step closer to joining the EV market. It’s a bit late to the party, but as they say, better late than never.

Updated 09/19/2017: We added a series of new images taken during the concept’s debut at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini Electric Concept.

Read more
2018 Mini Sedan

2018 Mini Sedan

Will Mini add a premium four-door to its lineup?

Ever since Mini was acquired by BMW, the British motoring icon has struggled to grow. Once known simply as a provider of fun, accessible, small-sized transportation, the brand has made several forays into uncharted territory over the years, some of which have brought success, and others – not so much. Now, however, Mini says it has the right formula. Rather than offering myriad niche variants like it did in the recent past, Mini is looking to trim the fat to just five core model lines. Four of these are already known, including the hardtop, convertible, Countryman subcompact crossover, and Clubman five-door wagon. The final fifth pillar, however, remains a mystery. That said, rumor has it a Mini sedan is heading down the pipeline.

Supporting the speculation is a comment made by Ralph Mahler, vice president for product management at Mini, who dropped a hint at the New York Auto Show while speaking to the U.K. publication Autocar about market trends, saying, “For example, in Asia and the U.S., the sedan segment is very big. This is very interesting to us, of course.”

In many ways, a new Mini sedan makes a lot of sense. The brand has applied its stylish, premium compact paintbrush to a variety of body styles before, but not once has it tried a classic four-door approach. And as Mini looks to expand its presence globally, this possible new segment entry could play well in markets where hatchbacks lose traction, such as the U.S. and China.

So, if the rumors are true, what would a Mini sedan offer? Read on for our speculative review.

Continue reading to learn more about the upcoming Mini sedan.

Read more
2016 Mini Countryman Plug-In Hybrid

2016 Mini Countryman Plug-In Hybrid

It seems the 2016 Clubman and 2016 Countryman aren’t the only brand-new vehicles Mini is working on. Word from our spy photographers has it the British marque is also testing its first plug-in hybrid automobile. Naturally, Mini hasn’t designed a brand-new vehicle altogether, but it will implement the technology across its entire lineup over the next few years. In the meantime, the Countryman will be the only mini to feature hybrid technology and the photos we just received from out paparazzi provide us with our first look at the thriftier Mini.

Much like most test vehicles spotted, the hybrid Countryman comes wrapped in heavy camouflage, so there’s really nothing new to see as far as exterior styling goes. In fact, we have only the "Hybrid Test Vehicle" sticker on the rear bumper as a hint that this Countryman also employs an electric motor under its skin. Actual details are still unknown as Mini has yet to confirm it will offer a hybrid, but the news of a plug-in Countryman is far from shocking with a plug-in version of the 2015 BMW 2 Series Active Tourer underway. Since the two vehicles make use of the same UKL platform, it was only a matter of time before Mini began exploring hybridization.

That time has apparently come, and judging by the way things usually roll at Mini, the Countryman Plug-In Hybrid is set to arrive right after the next-generation crossover debuts sometime in 2016.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Mini Countryman Plug-In Hybrid.

Read more
2015 Mini John Cooper Works Hardtop

2015 Mini John Cooper Works Hardtop

John Cooper’s cooperation with Mini began back in the days when the British automaker produced the original Mark I car. Developed as an homologation car for rally racing, the original Cooper and Cooper S models were built until 1967. The modern-day John Cooper Works was founded in 2000 by Michael Cooper, son of John Cooper. The first Mini JCW was released in 2008. The company is now a wholly owned subsidiary of BMW and is the in-house tuning arm for all Mini vehicles, much like the M division is to Bimmer. Seven years since the inception of the first modern-day Mini JCW, John Cooper Works has released a brand-new iteration of the beefed-up hatch.

Based on the recently redesigned Cooper Hardtop, the new JCW is the most powerful Mini ever developed as of 2015 with 228 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque at its disposal. The 2015 John Cooper Works Mini is set to bow at the 2015 Detroit Motor Show and go on sale in the United States a few months after its debut.

Updated 1/12/2015: Mini has officially revealed the Cooper Hardtop John Cooper Works at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Not that we didn’t already know nearly everything about it already. The only new information available is its starting price of $30,600 plus $850 delivery fee, its release date of spring 2015, and that Mini will be running the Cooper Hardtop JCW in the Street Tuner (ST) class of the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge in 2015.

Updated 01/23/2015: We’ve added a series of new images from the car’s official debut at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Check the new images in the "Pictures" tab.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Mini John Cooper Works.

Read more
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.

Read more
2014 Mini Cooper

2014 Mini Cooper

ExteriorInteriorDrivetrainPricesCompetitionConclusion Love it Leave it

Read more
2014 Mini John Cooper Works Concept

2014 Mini John Cooper Works Concept

When Mini launched the next-generation Cooper last month (in two simultaneous auto shows, no less), it was only a matter of time before a John Cooper Works version would show its face.

But even our expectations were thrown for a loop after finding out that Mini wasn’t wasting any time with debut of the John Cooper Works Concept, which is now penciled to arrive at the 2014 North American International Auto Show.

Thinking about it now, it does make perfect sense because Mini always earmarks its major debuts for major auto shows, and the next one on the docket is Detroit this coming January.

More importantly, the buzz generated by the debut of the next-generation Cooper is still circulating to this day, and nobody likes to play around with ’buzz’ more than Mini.

So yeah, it makes perfect sense, if you really consider the circumstances.

Oh, and the Mini John Cooper Works Concept is all sorts of awesome. That, alone, should be worth an extra jolt of anticipation in time for its debut in Detroit in a month’s time.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Mini John Cooper Works Concept.

view all
Read more
2014 Mini MPV Traveller

2014 Mini MPV Traveller

Mini is getting serious about expanding its line-up with the addition of a series of new models. Some of them have already been unveiled - like the new Coupe and Roadster - but others only exist due to rumors, at least until now. For the first time, the possible 5 seater van/mpv based on the Countryman platform has been captured by our spy photographers testing in mule form.

As you can see from these spy shots, the front fenders are a lot wider when compared to a standard Countryman and this is due to a slightly wider chassis that will offer more room in the Traveller. The wheelbase is also slightly longer due to the fact that the front wheels have been moved forward.

The new model will be built in order to offer Mini clients a more practical car featuring the typical Mini genes. As expected, the overall look of the Traveller will be very much Mini. The dimensions are compact and the front overhang has been kept short.

Mini’s new van/mpv will be previewed under the Spacebox name and the production car could be named the Traveller when it hits the market in 2014.

Read more
2012 Mini Roadster

2012 Mini Roadster

Months after the official unveiling of the new Mini Coupe, the company has decided it was time to "uncover" the Roadster version as well. Of course, everyone already knew what the new Roadster would look like with both the Coupe version and the Roadster Concept unveiled in 2009 making it on the scene before the Roadster.

To be honest, the Coupe and Roadster models are almost identical, except for the soft top, steeply raked windscreen, stainless steel roll bars, and the active rear spoiler that deploys at 50 mph. The new Roadster will be immediately recognized as a Mini thanks to features like the hexagonal contours of its radiator grille, the black border around the lower part of the body, chrome trim strips and surrounds, large circular headlights, vertically stacked rear lights positioned on the outer extremes of the rear end, and the eye-catching surrounds of the side indicators on the front side panels.

Like with the Coupe, the Roadster is powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine ranging from the base Coupe with 122 HP up to the John Cooper Works Coupe with 208 HP. The SD version gets a 141 HP turbocharged 2.0-liter diesel engine.

UPDATE 01/30/2012: Mini has announced the official prices for their new Roadster. The model will be offered in three different versions with prices starting from $24,350 for the Cooper Roadster, $27,350 for the Cooper S Roadster, and $34,500 for the JCW Roadster.

Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Mini Roadster.

view all
Read more
2011 MINI Minor Concept

2011 MINI Minor Concept

Back in the day, the MINI Cooper was the epitome of a small car, so much so that it became Mr. Bean’s official car. The hilarity of that is that the lovable British comedian is a pretty tall and lanky fellow so fitting him inside one of those old Coopers proved to be as difficult a task as trying to sleep inside a Little Tykes playhouse.

Since then, the MINI Cooper has become a lot bigger and with models including the Clubman and the Countryman already falling into the crossover categories, it would seem that the BMW-owned company is slowly leaving behind its small and quirky phase.

Wolfgang Armbrecht, however, begs to differ. According to MINI’s brand chief, the company is already developing a back-to-its-roots mini MINI car that will be smaller in size than the latest model of the Cooper.

Word around the watercooler says that the future car already has a name – the MINI Minor Concept – and that it will be a small three-door model with a small engine and a front wheel drive system. Specific details behind the MINI Minor are still unknown, but Armbrecht made it clear that a new car is already in the oven.

’’We have always been motivated by the idea to build a small spacious car,’’ he told the Financial Times Deutschland newspaper.

He also adds: “There will be a taste of ’’the next spectacular idea from the Mini brand’ at the Detroit Auto Show. Keep a close eye on the coming months.”

You don’t need to remind us about that last part, Mr. Armbrecht. We’re definitely going to keep some tabs on MINI’s potential return back to its Mr. Bean-driving days.

Read more
2012 MINI Canyon

2012 MINI Canyon

Mini will unveil a three-door version of the Countryman crossover for 2012. It will target models like the Range Rover Evoque and will be inspired by Mini’s concept car that debuted in 2005. The Canyon will also inspire a production version of the Beachcomber that will feature a stripped-out interior and removable roof panels.

The 2012 Canyon will be built on a shortened version of the Countryman’s chassis giving it two doors and a striking exterior design which features a sporty coupé-like roofline. The next Canyon will feature a dramatic roofline and two-seat interior. Also on the interior the car will feature all the latest technologies, leather and Alcantara, placing the Canyon above the Mini Countryman in the line-up.

The next crossover will be powered by a 208bhp 1.6-liter turbo engine from the JCW car. A 201bhp 2.0-liter diesel from BMW’s
X1 is also likely to be offered. Canyon will feature a new ALL4 four-wheel-drive system as standard.

Read more