The Mini Clubman is just about to be released on the free world and already Mini may be in the works for another new model. The Mini Cooper SUV was first demonstrated at the NAIAS and gave an indication of what the future of Mini may be: Bigger. The Mini SUV would be supposedly built upon the same Clubman chassis only with more ground clearance and All-Wheel Drive.
Wait! An All-Wheel Drive Mini? A larger Mini? So while the Mini is getting larger Hummer’s are getting smaller. Pretty soon what will they have to fight about? What happens when David and Goliath are the same size? Sure, it might be a fair fight but what is so heroic about that?
Canadian automotive consortium Manga is reportedly in talks with BMW to build the new Mini SUV. Since the Mini’s Oxford production plant is running at capacity as it is it would make since for BMW to be looking for another outlet for the SUV’s assembly. Manga has been the unfortunate loser in a few deals this year already as they have lost out on Chrysler to Cerebrus and also missed out on the production deal for the BMW X3 to Spartanburg, South Carolina’s BMW facility. So the chances are a new Mini SUV could be a win for more than just Mini and BMW.
The Mini revival has been a success since the Cooper and Cooper S hit the streets. The Mini Clubman is looking to expand (literally) on the Coopers success with added versatility. The Mini SUV just might do the trick to win over those car buyers who have not yet been able to see themselves a car of the Coopers diminutive size. While the SUV would still be smaller than any other SUV on the market it just might be the right size for many buyers.