Wed, 14 Aug 2013 10:31:00 EST
As we approach the November 18 debut of the new Mini Hardtop, the trickle of news is starting to increase. We've already shown you the exterior of the new hatchback, and now we can show you the interior. These images, captured by Car News China, show a cabin that maintains a few key Mini styling items, but is a fairly progressive evolution of the current R56 model.
Mon, 07 Apr 2014 10:58:00 EST
Mini's most iconic interior treatment, its center-mounted speedometer, is now gone. The new speedo sits atop the steering column, flanked by a (too tiny, in our opinion) tachometer. In the speedometer's former position are the radio controls. Our friends in China put it best when they say, "The large dial is much uglier than before." There's a mass of buttons and unfriendly black plastic that, at first glance, look far cheaper than the rest of the cabin. Of course, we'll wait to see how this is all ironed out for the production-spec car.
The other parts of the interior, however, look quite good. There's a small bank of toggle buttons at the bottom of the center stack, and the checkerboard dash insert looks clean as well. The seats sport extensions for the bottom cushions, meaning there'll be the option of more support for drivers with longer legs. GTI fans might also notice the plaid bolsters on the seats. Mini's treatment is a bit more subtle than what you'd see on a Volkswagen, though.
Mini has introduced three generations of retro hatchback since its revival in 2001, with numerous bodystyles spun off that core model. But the Countryman has always stood apart from the rest (save the Paceman which was in turn spun off of it). The Mini crossover is bigger than the rest of the lineup, has more doors, more driven wheels and a familiar yet different look.
Wed, 19 Nov 2014 20:05:00 EST
There's an all-new model in the works, set to share its architecture with BMW's own front-drive family. But that's still a couple of years away, so to keep the Countryman looking fresh, Mini is reportedly preparing to roll out a mildly facelifted version at the upcoming New York Auto Show.
As we're still awaiting confirmation from the automaker, few details on the updated Countryman are available at this point, but word has it that it will only include some minor cosmetic enhancements to the interior and exterior of the vehicle. Just how comprehensive those updates will be, and how many of them will be derived from the latest Mini Cooper hardtop remain to be seen, but with the NY show just a week away, it won't be long before we find out.
See that red thing? It's the Mini Citysurfer Concept. It is not, in case you were wondering, an automobile. Yet despite this apparent shortcoming, Mini has placed it on a plinth at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show.
The electric scooter weighs in at 40 pounds, can hit 15 miles per hour, cover 10 to 15 miles and can be folded up and charged in the trunk of a Mini Cooper (or any other vehicle with a 12-volt outlet and a roomy enough cargo area). According to the British marque, these qualities will give the scooter's owner the "spontaneous and convenient mobility even in those sections of an urban area not accessible to motorized vehicles."
It's not terribly difficult to see the appeal, as Mini explains it. With urban congestion becoming an increasingly serious problem - and some cities beginning to ban cars outright - the idea of an easy to charge and easy to stow runabout is extremely attractive. That's doubly true in the case of the Citysurfer, which is rather well equipped, as far as scooters go.