17/06/2012 MINI Rocketman concept given London-themed makeover
MINI’s pint-sized Rocketman concept has been given a makeover in celebration of London holding this year’s Olympic Games.
Many will remember the Rocketman concept from its debut at last year’s Geneva Motor Show; it was BMW’s vision of a new MINI truer to the original’s petite dimensions. Now, as part of BMW’s extensive sponsorship of the 2012 Olympics, it has been given a number of “unmistakably British design features.”
The first pillar of Britishness drawn upon is, unsurprisingly, the Union Jack. A red, white and blue theme is used across the exterior, with the dominant non-metallic blue paint set off by red and white details, as well as a generous helping of carbonfibre. Despite its diminutive footprint compared with its mainstream brethren (it’s 70cm shorter than the standard MINI), the designers managed to squeeze 18-inch rims beneath the Rocketman’s arches, finishing them with white polished sections and a red pinstripe.
The Union Jack also features in the design of the Rocketman’s quirky glass roof: the diagonal braces recreate the British flag, and also serve to bathe the interior with light from integrated optical fibres at night. Occupants will be illuminated while sitting in dark blue Nubuck leather seats (arranged in 3+1 formation), while the red and white exterior accents are mirrored inside by the door-pulls, speakers and air-vent surrounds.
In keeping with the Olympic theme, the central stowage compartment is decorated with miniature figures playing basketball, and the name of every city to hold the Olympics is depicted in the door panels and dashboard. A rubberised textile apparently derived from high-performance running shoes is used for the seat bolsters to help grip occupants during enthusiastic cornering.
The updated Rocketman will be one of the main exhibits in the BMW Group Pavilion, which is located close to the Olympic Village.