MINI Crossover: Paris Show Concept Will See Production
BMW MINI has released early details of its first all-wheel drive stationwagon. At over four metres in length, and 1.6m high, it’s the biggest MINI yet.
In true MINI tradition, the new car is all about neat styling touches married to high-quality fittings and exhibiting what’s likely to be sharp handling on the road, too.
If the market was slightly nonplussed by the Clubman’s door layout, wait until it sees the Crossover at next month’s Paris show; the concept car has four doors this time, two conventional ones on the passenger’s side, a standard-sized driver’s door, and a sliding one behind the driver’s for easier access to the rear seats.
At the back, the twin doors of the Clubman have been replaced by a single-piece tailgate with a frameless, retractable rear window.
Inside, the car has four separate seats (the rears on runners to give either extra legroom or luggage space) and a central ‘MINI Center Rail’. This is a matt-polished aluminium fastening rail which extends from the dashboard, through the middle of the car, to the rear. Passengers can attach cup-holders, entertainment consoles or storage units to this, and a special collection of dishes and cups has been created by Porzellan Manufaktur, Nymphenburg, specifically for it.
The other internal feature of note is the MINI Centre Globe. This is dashboard-mounted but split into hemispheres so, for example, the driver can access navigation information while a passenger surfs the Internet. It’s touch-sensitive but can also be programmed by a trackball on the steering wheel, or a keyboard that slides out from under the passenger’s dash.
No further technical details are available; however, the company does confirm that a ‘a series production car will be developed in the future’.
Text: Steve Wakefield
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