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Mini might not replace Paceman, Coupe, Roadster

Tue, 11 Mar 2014 09:31:00 EST

Nobody could argue at this point that Mini (like its parent company BMW) has not mastered the art (if you could call it that) of filling every niche with its own model. But with the third generation of Mini now upon us, some of the company's strategists are asking themselves what the point is of it all.

The outgoing second-generation Mini spawned too many variants to count. So far the new model has only surfaced in hatchback form, but the brand may roll out quite as many variants this time around. Instead it is looking at its lineup in terms of pillars.

The quintessential hatchback we've already seen would be one pillar. The Countryman crossover would be another. And the production version of the new Clubman concept which Mini displayed in Geneva would be a third. A convertible based (like the existing one and the one that came before it) on the hardtop hatchback is likely to follow, but don't expect too many other versions.

That would mean that many of the brand's quirkier two-door models could face the axe – or rather simply not be replaced by new versions. That would likely include the Coupe, the Roadster and the Paceman crossover. While some of us are more partial to the roadster than the cabriolet, and despite them all being relatively good to steer, we have to say that we'd hardly miss any of them.

By Noah Joseph

See also: Mini nixes plans for 7-seater, Countryman to stay largest model, Mini Clubman Concept isn't mini, isn't a Clubman, Watch Jay Leno bounce around with Dakar winner Roma in his Mini All4Racing.