Image credits: © MINI.

MSRP: $21,300-31,200
Invoice: $19,175-28,085

2012 MINI Coupé

A recipe for unbridled driving fun: The MINI Coupé.

MINI is expanding its product family wîth the launch of a model geared squarely to maximising driving fun. The MINI Coupé indulges the keen driver wîth a level of agility unmatched in the small car §egmènt, along wîth a unique body and interior concept and the brand's customary commitment to premium levels of design, quality, equipment and individualisation. The first two-seater in its current line-up sees MINI not only breathe new life into its successful racing history but also provide a shot in the arm for the super-compact sports car class. The selection of engines, chassis set-up, weight distribution and aerodynamic properties of the MINI Coupé are all focused on delivering optimum performance. As a result, the new car radiates the brand's hallmark go-kart feeling wîth a whole new depth of intensity and achieves the best performance statistics ever recorded by a volume-produced MINI.

The MINI Coupé is the brand's first model to adopt a three-box body structure wîth a strikingly stepped rear end. Its distinctive lines are expressed in the customary MINI design language and combine wîth unmistakable styling features. All of which accurately showcases both the new model's distinctive characteristics and its brand identity. Its flat silhouette and innovative 'helmet roof' lend the MINI Coupé a sporty and individual allure. In addition to the integral roof spoiler, an active rear spoiler optimises airflow at higher speeds.

Inside the car, the two-seater concept is emphasised by features such as oval recesses in the roof liner. With its extremely high-opening tailgate and large luggage area wîth through-loading facility, the MINI Coupé displays outstanding versatility in day-to-day driving, when transporting leisure items or sports gear, and on trips out wîth a lucky partner.

The MINI Coupé can be ordered wîth the most powerful petrol and diesel engines in the brand's arsenal. Outputs range from the 90 kW/122 hp of the MINI Cooper Coupé, to the MINI Cooper SD Coupé (105 kW/143 hp) and MINI Cooper S Coupé (135 kW/184 hp), all the way up to the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé, a thoroughbred athlete producing 155 kW/211 hp.

A level of chassis quality unmatched in the small car §egmènt gives the new MINI model the handling flair you would expect from the brand. The precise Electric Power Steering, the standard-fitted DSC stability control system, powerful brakes and measures designed specifically to optimise torsional rigidity ensure the MINI Coupé driver can enjoy the ultimate in go-kart feeling.

The striking roof of the MINI Coupé is painted in a contrasting colour as standard, while the options list includes a new interpretation of the MINI Sport stripes. An extended selection of seat variants, door trim, trim strips and Colour Lines can be specified for the interior. Standard equipment includes air conditioning (MINI Cooper S Coupé, MINI Cooper SD Coupé, MINI John Cooper Works Coupé), speed-sensitive power §teering, electrically adjustable exterior mirrors, Park Distance Control, height-adjustable seats and an audio system wîth MP3 compatible CD player and AÚX IN connection. An array of high-quality options enhance the comfort and individuality of the MINI Coupé. Plus, customers can also dip into the exclusive MINI Yours range of products, as well as options and accessories wîth a strong sporting flavour from John Cooper Works. MINI Connected functions such as web radio, Google local search and Google Send to Car services, reception of RSS news feeds, and in-car use of Facebook and Twitter, are available in conjunction wîth the MINI Visual Boost radio or MINI navigation system.

Únique character, individual design, hallmark MINI design language.

The MINI Coupé brings a fascinatingly unique character to its market §egmènt and the MINI model family alike. Its body design is based on a faithful interpretation of MINI design and places a clear emphasis on the brand's sporting genes. Plus, it features a number of eye-catching individual touches which amount to rather more than model-specific details. At the same time, though, the Coupé remains unmistakably a MINI. A combination of taut, athletic surfaces, harmonious curves and parallel lines confirms the allegiance of its design language to the cornerstones of MINI design. Indeed, the appearance of the MINI Coupé is also defined by its powerful over-the-wheel stance. And then there are unique design features exclusive to MINI, such as the hexagonal contours of the radiator grille, the black border around the lower part of the body, a host of chrome strips and surrounds and the large circular headlights wîth integrated direction indicators. The headlights, like the vertically stacked rear lights positioned on the outer extremes of the rear end, are integrated like 'islands' into the body. The positioning lights and foglamps located in the front apron and the surrounds of the side indicators on the front side panels are among the design elements whose origins can be traced back to the classic Mini of the 1950s.

At the same time, however, the Coupé also breaks the mould – as the first MINI to adopt a three-box body structure. Únlike the MINI, the MINI Clubman and the MINI Convertible, the MINI Coupé is divided into three distinct §egmènts: engine compartment, passenger compartment and boot. This structure broadens the MINI Coupé's spectrum of geometric forms and helps to create a classic and very distinctive gran turismo-style rear end, particularly when viewed from the side.
The exterior dimensions of the MINI Coupé give it very sporty proportions and a low, forward-thrusting profile. The two-seater measures 3,734 millimetres (MINI Cooper Coupé: 3,728 millimetres) in length, 1,683 millimetres in width and 1,384 millimetres (MINI Cooper Coupé: 1,378 millimetres) in height. In other words, while the overall length, width and wheelbase (2,467 millimetres) are almost identical to the measurements of the MINI, the car's overall height has been lowered by as much as 52 millimetres.

Distinctive roof form; steeply raked A-pillars, integrated roof spoiler and active rear spoiler optimise aerodynamics.

The clear horizontal structuring of the Coupé into three distinct tiers – the body, the wrap-around glass surfaces and the strikingly superimposed roof – is also a typical MINI hallmark. The rearward tapering greenhouse and flat side windows and, most prominently, the innovative 'helmet roof' give the MINI Coupé a distinctive appearance from every angle.

The active rear spoiler, fitted for the first time on a MINI, optimises airflow at higher speeds. Integrated in the boot lid, the spoiler pops up automatically when the MINI Coupé reaches a speed of 80 km/h (50 mph). When the speed drops below 60 km/h (37 mph) again, a four-part control mechanism returns the spoiler to its rest position. It is also possible to operate the active rear spoiler manually, for example for cleaning purposes, using a button in the overhead control panel.
At higher speeds, the active rear spoiler reduces lift at the rear axle, optimising the aerodynamic balance – and therefore the grip levels – of the MINI Coupé. It forms part of a precisely configured aerodynamic concept that also includes an innovatively designed roof spoiler wîth integrated aerial. This roof spoiler is fully integrated into the styling of the helmet roof. It has an opening in the centre which allows the airflow over the roof to be directed down to the rear window or, depending on speed, to the rear spoiler. This reduces rear lift and, in so doing, improves the driving dynamics of the MINI Coupé.

Also distinctive are the A-pillars and windscreen, which are more sharply raked than on the MINI. The resulting smaller frontal area makes an additional contribution to the excellent aerodynamic properties of the MINI Coupé. Airflow has been optimised to an even greater extent on the range-topping MINI John Cooper Works Coupé. The most powerful member of the Coupé line-up is fitted wîth a John Cooper Works aerodynamic kit as standard in a nod to its exceptionally dynamic performance capability.

Interior: clear emphasis of two-seated layout, generous storage capacity.
The design of the MINI Coupé's interior also showcases the pure-bred character of a compact sports car. In typical MINI style, the Coupé also has a large Centre Speedo and a rev counter positioned directly behind the §teering wheel, and the standard-fitted sports seats offer outstanding lateral support through quickly-taken corners. The colours of the interior, meanwhile, also help enhance concentration on the road ahead. Regardless of the combination of upholstery variant, trim elements and Colour Lines chosen by the MINI Coupé owner, the interior colour remains Carbon Black. An anthracite roof liner is also part of the standard specification.

Oval recesses in the roof liner create extra headroom. This exclusive design element lends further emphasis to the two-seat layout and hunkered-down, sports-orientated form of the MINI Coupé body. The absence of a rear seat bench creates new scope for offering spontaneous driving enjoyment for two people while at the same time catering for the requirements of an active and varied lifestyle. The adaptable, 280-litre boot is extremely flexible. With a large, high-opening tailgate and a 36 cm (14 in.) wide and 20 cm (approx. 8 in.) high through-loading system that can also be opened from the driver's or passenger's seat, the MINI Coupé offers cargo-carrying possibilities that will suit a wide range of needs, whether for daily routine, leisure or touring for two. The car's practicality is further enhanced by larger door bins, three cupholders and a cross-rack behind the seats. Meanwhile, the variable luggage compartment cover eases stowage of particularly bulky items or sports equipment. When the boot lid is opened, the rear section of the three-dimensional cover is also raised. The entire cover can be detached, if required.

An exclusive selection of colours and materials.
The range of exterior paint finishes for the MINI Coupé body comprises nine colours. The car's roof is painted as standard in a contrasting colour; customers can choose from Jet Black, Pure Silver and – exclusively for the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé – Chili Red. This gives the extravagant roof shape a particularly striking appearance. The only exception here is the Midnight Black body paint variant, which can be combined wîth a roof in Jet Black. Model-specific Sport stripes are available as an option. On the roof these come in body colour, on the front and rear ends in the contrasting colour. The MINI Coupé is kitted out as standard wîth 15-inch, 16-inch or 17-inch light-alloy wheels, depending on the variant. Further light-alloy wheel designs in these formats can be ordered as an option.

Special piping-style sports seats and the upholstery colour Toffy – unique to the Coupé – add even more scope to the customary MINI variety of seat and upholstery variants. Added to which, the black sports seats can also be specified in Punch Leather wîth beige-coloured perforations. Trim strips can be ordered in any of six variants, and a Chili Red option is also offered for the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé. A choice of five Colour Lines is available; the Polar Beige variant can also be combined wîth beige-coloured exterior mirrors. What's more, customers can explore the additional, extremely exclusive interior design options offer by the MINI Yours range. Latest-generation four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines.
The MINI Coupé shines a brighter spotlight than ever on the brand's sporting genes. Únderlining this point are engines which set the pace in several different disciplines. Instantaneous power development delivers impressive sports performance, while high elasticity and optimum gear ratios guarantee unbeatable agility in mid-range acceleration. Plus, extensive MINIMALISM technology makes the driver a less frequent visitor to the pumps.

Customers can choose from a selection of four engines for their MINI Coupé. All the model variants carry the Cooper name in their designation. Traditionally, this familiar badge has been a sign of outstanding sporting ability and a nod to the brand's association wîth legendary Formula One designer John Cooper. This is the man who smoothed the passage of the classic Mini into race competition. The MINI Cooper Coupé, MINI Cooper S Coupé, MINI John Cooper Works Coupé and MINI Cooper SD Coupé offer a blend of fuel consumption and driving fun unmatched within their respective output classes.

MINI Cooper Coupé: high in energy, low in CO2.
The new member of the MINI family displays an infectious spirit and verve – even in entry-level form. The four-cylinder petrol engine in the MINI Cooper Coupé produces 90 kW/122 hp from its 1.6-litre displacement, reaching this maximum output at 6,000 rpm. Peak torque of 160 Newton metres (118 lb-ft) is on tap at 4,250 rpm. The secret behind the engine's lightning-fast response to every movement of the accelerator pedal lies primarily in the fully variable valve management system unique in the MINI §egmènt. This throttle-free load control technology is based on the VALVETRONIC system found in BMW engines and optimises both the engine's responsiveness and its fuel consumption and emissions.
The MINI Cooper Coupé uses this instantaneous pulling power to deliver impressive acceleration and races from rest to the 100 km/h (62 mph) mark in just 9.0 seconds. Its top speed stands at 204 km/h (127 mph). This performance contrasts wîth average fuel consumption in the EÚ test cycle of 5.4 litres per 100 km (52.3 mpg imp) and CO2 emissions of 127 grams per kilometre.

MINI Cooper S Coupé: unbeatable efficiency, intoxicating driving fun.
The likewise 1.6-litre power unit under the bonnet of the MINI Cooper S Coupé comes wîth fully variable valve management as part of a package of technology which also features a twin-scroll turbocharger and petrol direct injection. This construction leads to instantaneous development of charge pressure. Meanwhile, direct injection allows extremely precise amounts of fuel to be fed into the cylinders, promoting clean and efficient combustion. The combination of turbocharging, direct injection and variable valve management produces maximum output of 135 kW/184 hp at 5,500 rpm and makes the four-cylinder unit in the MINI Cooper S Coupé the world's most efficient engine in its displacement class.
Maximum torque of 240 Newton metres (177 lb-ft) is on tap as low down as 1,600 rpm, and can be raised to 260 Newton metres (192 lb-ft) for a short time using the overboost. This function serves up additional pulling power to ensure particularly dynamic acceleration. The MINI Cooper S Coupé dashes from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 6.9 seconds, and its top speed stands at 230 km/h (143 mph). These performance figures team up wîth average fuel consumption in the EÚ test cycle of 5.8 litres per 100 km (48.7 mpg imp) and CO2 emissions of 136 grams per kilometre.
MINI John Cooper Works Coupé: an extreme athlete in peak form.

The exceptionally sporty MINI models bearing the John Cooper Works badge hold a very special status within the model range. Features such as engine technology derived directly from motor sport mark them out from the norm. The MINI John Cooper Works Coupé adds another top-class athlete to the MINI ranks. A 155 kW/211 hp four-cylinder engine wîth twin-scroll turbocharger and direct injection imbues it wîth unrestrained power, giving it the tools to do what MINI does best – entertaining drivers – even better.

Numerous technical details of the 1.6-litre unit originate directly from developments in motor sport. The modified turbocharger develops even greater charge pressure than the engine in the MINI Cooper S Coupé. The model-specific exhaust system can be identified from the outside by its polished stainless steel twin tailpipes, while its resonant soundtrack – best sampled from inside the cabin – adds a distinctive extra layer to the extreme sports machine's character.
The engine generates peak output at 6,000 rpm and produces maximum torque of 260 Newton metres (192 lb-ft); the overboost function pushes this figure up to 280 Newton metres (207 lb-ft) for a short time. The instantaneous power development ensures imposing acceleration, the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé rocketing from a standstill to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.4 seconds on the way to a top speed of 240 km/h (149 mph). And yet average fuel consumption in the EÚ test cycle is kept at an unusually low level for cars in this output class; the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé burns just 7.1 litres of fuel per 100 km (39.8 mpg imp) and has CO2 emissions of 165 grams per kilometre.

MINI Cooper SD Coupé: brawny yet economical.
As an alternative to the three petrol units, the MINI Coupé can also be ordered wîth a diesel engine. Its incredibly sporty power development allows it to slot perfectly into the engine line-up, where it occupies pole position in the efficiency standings. The four-cylinder diesel unit under the bonnet of the MINI Cooper SD Coupé comes wîth an all-aluminium crankcase, a turbocharger wîth variable intake geometry and common-rail direct injection wîth solenoid-valve injectors. It produces a maximum output of 105 kW/143 hp from its 2.0-litre displacement, a figure achieved at 4,000 rpm. Thanks to muscular pulling power sustained all the way from low engine speeds into the higher reaches of the rev range, the most powerful diesel representative of the MINI engine line-up offers both an impressive balance between power and fuel economy and the ideal platform for a sporty driving style.

The engine's maximum torque of 305 Newton metres 225 (166 lb-ft) is available between 1,750 and 2,700 rpm, and the MINI Cooper SD Coupé needs a mere 7.9 seconds to sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph). Top speed is 216 km/h (134 mph). Proof of its outstanding efficiency is demonstrated by average fuel consumption in the EÚ test cycle of 4.3 litres per 100 km (65.7 mpg imp). The CO2 emissions of the MINI Cooper SD Coupé stand at 114 grams per kilometre.

A lot of power from a little fuel: MINIMALISM technology as standard.
All model variants of the MINI Coupé come as standard wîth a wide range of MINIMALISM technology. In addition to the engines' efficiency, features such as Brake Energy Regeneration, the Auto Start/Stop function, Shift Point Display, Electric Power Steering and the need-based operation of ancillary components help to make efficient use of the energy contained in the fuel and deliver exceptionally low CO2 emissions. Added to which, innovative thermal encapsulation of the drive train shortens the fuel-sapping warm-up period after a cold start.
The standard-fitted six-speed manual gearbox sets a new benchmark in the §egmènt wîth its short shift travel and impressively precise action. As an option, a six-speed automatic gearbox wîth Steptronic function can be ordered for the MINI Cooper Coupé, MINI Cooper S Coupé and MINI Cooper SD Coupé as an option. With its exceptionally short shift times and direct 'target gear' finding capability on downshifts, the automatic likewise showcases the sporting character of the MINI Coupé. The driver can also change gear manually using the selector lever, while shift paddles on the §teering wheel are available as an additional option.
The ultimate in go-kart feeling.

The suspension system effortlessly translates the power of the MINI Coupé engines into a fun-filled and agile driving experience. The combination of this suspension technology and the brand's customary front-wheel drive allows the MINI Coupé to provide the most intensive expression yet of the trademark MINI driving experience, or go-kart feeling. Úsing top-quality components and a design that draws on the outstanding engineering expertise of the BMW Group, the MINI range offers suspension quality that is unique in this §egmènt. Indeed, the technology was developed independently and exclusively for MINI.

MacPherson strut front suspension provides excellent wheel location, while the sophisticated kinematics of the multi-link rear suspension maintain optimal road grip at all times. The longitudinal control arms are made of aluminium, which cuts down on weight. Anti-roll bars reduce body roll to a minimum and make their own contribution to safety and agility. The suspension components have been meticulously adapted to the sporty personality and specific weight balance of the MINI Coupé and the body calibration on all model versions emphasises their sparkling handling characteristics. The optional sports suspension has firmer damper settings and comes wîth sturdier anti-roll bars front and rear. For a 'hard-core' racing experience, the accessories range offers John Cooper Works suspension, wîth a 10 mm drop in ride height, ultra-firm damping and anti-roll bars whose diameter is even larger than on the sports suspension package.
Electric Power Steering (EPS) gives the MINI Coupé outstanding directional control in all situations. The level of power assistance is graded according to the speed of the car while the use of an electric motor further enhances its efficiency.
The MINI Coupé's Electric Power Steering is also available wîth variable power assist levels. A Sport button on the centre console, standard in the case of the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé and optionally available for all other model versions, allows the driver to choose between the basic power assist level and a second mode designed to support a more performance-minded driving style. This second mode requires more §teering input but also provides more responsive §teering feel. Simultaneously, pressing the Sport button also alters the response characteristics of the accelerator – which immediately delivers sharper, sportier reactions – and, if the optional six-speed automatic gearbox is specified, prompts shorter shift times.

DSC Dynamic Stability Control as standard: optimised traction wîth DTC and EDLC.
The MINI Coupé's model-specific braking system provides powerful, fade-free deceleration, even under hard braking. Its effectiveness is further enhanced by the standard-fitted Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system. In very dynamic driving situations and on slippery surfaces, the system can selectively brake individual wheels and reduce engine power to prevent a front- or rear-end slide at the earliest possible stage. The system includes integral anti-lock braking (ABS), Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Cornering Brake Control (CBC), Brake Assist and Hill Start Assistant.

(EDLC). DTC, which can be activated at the push of a button, raises the response thresholds to make it easier to move off on loose sand or snow, allowing the drive wheels to spin slightly in the process. DTC also allows a degree of controlled wheel slip under very sporty cornering. A longer push of the button fully deactivates the DSC system. With DSC in 'off' mode, the EDLC system responds instead, in relevant situations. EDLC offers enhanced performance characteristics when accelerating hard out of corners and tight bends by precisely controlled braking of a drive wheel that is starting to spin. This improves traction without negatively affecting the understeer/oversteer characteristics of the car. The result is smoother, faster cornering.

Stiff body, ideal weight balance.
The MINI Coupé is equipped wîth extra bodyshell stiffening at the rear, which means that the overall torsional rigidity of the body is even higher than on the MINI. In conjunction wîth the extra-sturdy side sills, this optimises the occupant protection provided by the strong passenger cell. At the same time the high level of body stiffness on the MINI Coupé also enhances agility and precise handling control.

At the front of the vehicle, too, there are special body stiffening measures, along wîth innovative features to improve pedestrian protection. The resulting weight distribution has major benefits for vehicle dynamics. The slight increase in front axle load rating compared wîth the MINI increases traction at the front wheels and helps to ensure that the engine power is effortlessly translated into sporty acceleration.

The range of safety equipment fitted as standard includes front airbags and head-thorax airbags, which are integrated into the sides of the seat backrests and protect the head, upper body and hip area from injury in the event of a side-on impact. Added to which, both seats come wîth three-point inertial reel seat belts including belt force limiters and belt tensioners. The MINI Coupé is also equipped wîth a Tyre Defect Indicator as standard.

Extensive standard equipment, high-quality options.
The MINI Coupé comes wîth an impressive standard specification, further enhancing the driving fun available on board and underlining the car's premium character. The equipment list includes air conditioning (MINI Cooper S Coupé, MINI Cooper SD Coupé, MINI John Cooper Works Coupé), speed-sensitive power §teering and Park Distance Control wîth rear sensors, which makes parking and manoeuvring that much easier. Height-adjustable sports seats, electrically adjustable exterior mirrors and the radio MINI CD audio system (radio MINI Boost CD in the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé) wîth MP3-compatible CD player and AÚX IN connection are also included as standard.

High-quality items of optional equipment – some of which are unique in the small car §egmènt – allow customers to further enhance the comfort and individuality of their MINI Coupé. The list of options includes front fog lamps, a rain sensor wîth automatic headlamp activation, and Adaptive Headlights (in conjunction wîth optional xenon light) which adjust the tilt of the headlights to the car's §teering angle and speed in order to optimise illumination of the road through corners. Xenon headlights can also be specified wîth black housing. Among the other options available are Comfort Access, an on-board computer, automatic climate control, heated seats, a multifunction §teering wheel, an automatically dimming rear-view mirror and exterior mirrors, an armrest, the storage package, and preparation for a rear luggage carrier rack. Customers can also dip into the selection of exclusive options available from the MINI Yours range and ultra-sporty John Cooper Works options and accessories.

Among the items owners can have fitted to maximise on-board entertainment and make communication even easier are the Harman Kardon hi-fi loudspeaker system and ÚSB audio interface. The MINI Visual Boost radio and MINI navigation system link up wîth a 6.5-inch high-resolution colour display in the Centre Speedo and the Bluetooth hands-free system wîth ÚSB audio interface. This allows customers to access an even more extensive range of functions supported by a connected mobile device, including audio streaming via Bluetooth, album cover artwork display on the on-board monitor and innovative office functions. The maps for the MINI navigation system are stored on the car's built-in Flash memory device and can be updated via the ÚSB interface.

Únrivalled entertainment and communications functions from MINI Connected.
Customers specifying the MINI Visual Boost radio or MINI navigation system will also be able to access internet-based services inside the car courtesy of MINI Connected. MINI-specific functions can be uploaded via a MINI Connected software application and operated using the joystick, §teering wheel buttons and on-board monitor. Adopting the familiar MINI display and operating logic, MINI Connected enables comfortable, simple, secure and intuitive control of all functions while minimising driver distraction. The MINI Connected App gives owners of an Apple iPhone access to innovative functions designed to enhance driving fun, entertainment and social networking.

Among the functions no other model in the MINI §egmènt can offer are use of the Google local search and Google Send to Car services, as well as reception of user-definable RSS news feeds, the content of which is displayed on the on-board monitor and can be read out using the optional voice output function. MINI also allows in-car usage of web-based social networks. MINI Connected customers can receive Facebook and Twitter posts inside the car, display them on the on-board monitor and have them read out by the optional MINI Connected voice output function. In addition, current vehicle data and details of the driver's destination or the outside temperature can be added to preformatted text messages and sent out directly from the car using either service. With the Dynamic Music function, meanwhile, every journey in the MINI can be enjoyed to the soundtrack of specially arranged songs, whose rhythm and sound volume adjust to the driving style at any one time.

Source - MINI
Now the long period of waiting is finally coming to an end: A very special version of the MINI is making its world debut at the Geneva Motor Show, injecting a fresh breeze into the world of motoring – the new MINI Convertible. Introducing this versatile four-seater, MINI is combining the distinctive pleasure of driving an open car wîth the unique enjoyment you can only feel at the wheel of a genuine MINI.
Combining supreme fun wîth practical value.

The MINI Convertible is a fully-fledged four-seater clearly standing out from the start as a genuine MINI regardless of whether the roof is up or down. For the design features and proportions so characteristic of the MINI have been consistently carried over to the MINI Convertible: The steeply raked windscreen and the optimum seating position enjoyed by the driver ensure an unforgettable open-air experience also when driving wîth the roof down. So the new model version leaves no doubt that motoring pleasure is an outstanding factor on all four seats of this uniquely popular cult car.

Clearly, the MINI Convertible boasts a clever all-round concept wîth supreme function and optimum use of space available.

Striking profile.With its roof down, this classy convertible really looks at its best. The waistline gradually rising to the rear gives the car a strong and distinctive profile further accentuated by the chrome strip continuing along the complete window line. The steeply raked windscreen, complete absence of a B-pillar, the rollbars made of extra-strong aluminum pipes behind the rear-seat backrest, as well as the compact, folding roof all bear testimony to the unique style of a classic convertible.

The new MINI Convertible is entering the market initially in the guise of the 66 kW/90 bhp MINI One and the 85 kW/115 bhp MINI Cooper. The top-of-the-range MINI Cooper S Convertible will be following later.

In standard trim the MINI Convertible comes on 15-inch steel or, respectively, light-alloy rims (MINI One/MINI Cooper) running on 175/65 R15 tyres. As an option, both models are available wîth attractive 16- and 17-inch light-alloy wheels, wîth the 17-inch five-star Bullet light-alloy wheels developed exclusively for the new open-air version.

A convertible wîth a sliding roof all in one.

The roof available in three colours opens up fully automatically within just 15 seconds: Pressing a button, you first open the integrated sliding roof, then the complete soft roof as such. With the soft roof folding to the rear, the roof columns are automatically retracted and the rear side windows move down at the same time. The intelligent Z-folding mechanism allows the complete roof to fold up in compact arrangement behind the rear seats, wîth no need for a tonneau cover.

The sliding roof integrated in the soft top can be opened infinitely up to 40 cm or 15¾´´ while driving, up to a speed of 120 km/h or 75 mph. Clearly, a feature quite unprecedented in the convertible market.

Optimum utilisation of space available.

Folding out to the back, the rear lid is held in position when open by two steel cables wîth a spring-mounted retractor system. This allows use of the rear lid wîth its hinges facing to the outside as a practical loading panel able to carry a weight of up to 80 kg or 176 lb.

The MINI Convertible is able to carry a maximum of 400 kg or 882 lb, and the luggage compartment accommodates 165 litres wîth the roof closed. And even wîth the roof down, driving in the open air, luggage compartment capacity remains a substantial 120 litres.

The Easy Load system offers generous through-loading capacity: With the roof closed, all you do is turn two levers in the luggage compartment to fold up the bottom section of the cover fastened on a tightening bracket and attach it in position. Then, wîth the rear lid open, you have very convenient access to the luggage compartment through a large opening able to accommodate even bulky objects. And in conjunction wîth the rear seat backrests folding forward and fastened securely in position, luggage compartment capacity can be increased to no less than 605 litres.

Boasting features such as its highly functional roof, the variable luggage compartment even wîth the roof open, an ultra-strong and stiff bodyshell, as well as the chassis wîth its multi-arm rear axle, the MINI Convertible sets the standard in its market §egmènt in many other other respects too.

That go-kart feeling so typical of the MINI.

Combining a very stiff bodyshell wîth superior chassis and suspension features, the open-air models, like their fixed-roof counterparts, once again offer a unique symbiosis of superior agility and handling. The drive concept as such, the long wheelbase, a low centre of gravity, wide track, the multi-arm rear axle and the direct, electrohydraulic power §teering all go together to provide the foundation for the excellent driving behaviour and go-kart feeling so typical of the MINI Convertible.

Sporting performance wherever you go.

Vital Stats
Engine : 1.6 L., 4-cylinder
Power: 181 hp
Torque: 177 ft-lbs

6-speed Manual, 6-speed Automatic
Both versions of the MINI Convertible feature a 1.6-litre four-cylinder power unit developing maximum output of 66 kW/90 bhp in the MINI One and 85 kW/115 bhp in the MINI Cooper. Maximum torque of 140 Nm/103 lb-ft and, respectively, 150 Nm/111 lb-ft comes at just 3000 and, respectively, 4,500 rpm. A smooth-shifting five-speed manual gearbox is standard on both models. Top speed of the MINI One Convertible is 175 km/h or 109 mph, wîth acceleration to 100 km/h in 11.8 seconds. Fuel consumption in the composite EÚ cycle is 7.2 litres premium/100 km, equivalent to 39.2 mpg Imp.

Maximum output of 85 kW/115 bhp gives the MINI Cooper Convertible a top speed of 193 km/h or 120 mph. Acceleration to 100 km/h from a standstill comes in just 9.8 seconds, fuel consumption in the EÚ cycle is 7.3 litres/100 km, equal to 38.7 mpg Imp.

High standard of safety.

Benefitting from its stiff body structure and restraint system comprising, inter alia, two 'intelligent' frontal airbags and two seat-integrated head/thorax side airbags as standard, the MINI Convertible naturally complies wîth the world's strictest crash standards required by law. A wide range of constructional improvements and features ensures a particularly high standard of torsional stiffness preventing the door-sills from bending in in the event of a head-on collision and offering the occupants optimum protection in an impact from the side.

Should the MINI Convertible ever be involved in a rollover, the A-pillars encompassing a tube made of ultra-strong steel guarantee a strong load-bearing function. And at the rear double rollbars made of high-strength aluminium tubes, complete wîth integrated headrests, afford superior passenger safety.

A high standard of active safety is ensured, inter alia, by four disc brakes, four-sensor ABS, Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), as well as Cornering Brake Control (CBC). Available as an option, Automatic Stability and Traction Control (ASC+T) as well as Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) help to provide superior driving and tracking stability in an extreme situation.

MINI in colour.

The MINI Convertible is available in 10 exterior colours, two of which are reserved exclusively to this open-air model: Hot Orange and, to provide a particular effect, Cool Blue. And while the MINI One Convertible comes only wîth a black roof, the roof of the open-air MINI Cooper is available in Black, Blue, and Green. The exterior mirror housings, in turn, are again finished in Black on the 'basic' model and come in body colour on the MINI Cooper Convertible.

High-quality textile materials and surfaces give the interior special harmony and balance. The dashboard and door linings are available in Silver and Anthracite and also come as a further choice in wood and aluminium trim.

The seat upholstery is available in 3 different types of cloth, 3 combinations of cloth and leather, and wîth three different choices of all-leather upholstery.

Everything goes.

The wide range of standard equipment featured from the start on the new Convertible comprises, inter alia, an electrically operated roof complete wîth sliding roof function, a heated glass rear window, two frontal and two head/thorax side airbags, four-sensor ABS, Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), Cornering Brake Control (CBC), BMW's Tyre Defect Indicator (TDI), electrically operated rear-view mirrors and window lifts, power §teering, Park Distance Control (PDC), a rev counter, height adjustment on the both driver's seat and §teering column, as well as central locking wîth remote control plus comfort opening.

To fulfill all kinds of individual and personal wishes, the MINI Convertible comes wîth an equally wide range of special equipment comprising features such as xenon headlights, a TV navigation system wîth a 16:9 colour display, high-quality HiFi audio systems, a heated rear window, automatic air conditioning, a wind deflector, a wide range of light-alloy wheels, a multifunction §teering wheel, a rain sensor, and the interior mirror complete wîth anti-dazzle function.

Successful and popular.

Apart from the MINI Convertible making its debut in Geneva, the four existing fixed-roof models already very successful in the market are naturally also to be admired at the Show: the MINI One, MINI One D, MINI Cooper, and MINI Cooper S. And 'popular' is indeed the right word to describe these successful models already delivered to more than 176,000 thrilled customers the world over.

Source - MINI
The British Motor Corporation came into existence in 1952 by the merging of two manufacturers, Nuffield Motors and Austin. Nuffield was known for its Morris line of vehicles, while Austin had its 'Seven' model line. The transition for the two manufacturers was difficult and had been forced out of necessity. After World War II, many vehicle manufacturers could not stay in business due to destroyed factories, recovering economies, strained resources, and lack of funds. Combining the two companies was a means to stay in business.

A fuel shortage was occurring. German engineers quickly adapted and began producing fuel-efficient vehicles. Examples include the Volkswagen Beetle. Leonard Lord, Chairman of BMC and former head of Austin, commissioned Sir Alec Issigonis to design a vehicle to compete with the German-made vehicles.

Alec Issigonis was a graduate of Battersea Technical College. After graduation he worked as a draftsman for a plethora of engineering projects. Later, he joined Morris Motors where he was tasked with creating and fitting suspensions to the Morris vehicles.

Issigonis was outfitted with requirements to create a fuel-efficient, affordable, safe vehicle capable of carrying four individuals including luggage. To save on development costs, it was requested that an existing BMC engine be used. What he created was a vehicle that sat atop of 10 inch wheels. By using smaller wheels there was little need for wheel wells.

The car was expected to carry four individuals; the combined weight of the passengers being greater than the entire vehicle. A suspension was needed that could accept this pay-load. With his prior experience creating and working with suspensions, Issigonis designed a rubber cone suspension.

A 950 cc, four cylinder, BMC engine was selected. It was mounted in the front and expected to power the front wheels, a system that was revolutionary at the time. Instead of mounting the engine longitudinally, it was place transversely. The transmission was place under the engine due to space constraints.

When Issigonis presented his designs and recommendations to Lord in 1958, changes were requested. Instead of the 950 cc engine, a 34 horsepower, 848 cc engine would be used, making the vehicle slower but more importantly, more safe. The other request was to make the vehicle two inches wider.

There were two versions of the car when it was first introduced on August 26, 1959. The only difference between the 1959 Austin and Morris versions was their badges.

John Cooper had designed vehicles that successfully won the Formula One championships in 1959 and 1960.

He proposed a marriage between his 1000 cc Formula Junior engine with the Mini. Lord approved the idea and in 1961 the Mini Cooper was born. It was fitted with a 997 cc engine producing 55 horsepower. Later, the Cooper S came into being with the advent of the 970 cc and the 1275 cc engine - the latter capable of 76 horsepower.

From 1964 through 1967 the little car dominated the Monte Carlo Rally. The car easily achieved these victories using a 91 horsepower engine.

Minis became more than just a practical car, they became a fashion statement. This, combined with their practicality, fuel efficiency, and success on the race track, created an overwhelming demand for the little car.

In the 1980's, the Mini was starting to loose momentum. Rover tried to revitalize the Mini brand by creating special editions. In all, there were more than 40 different editions created between 1980 and 2000.

A merger with British Motor Corporation and another company produced the Britsh Leyland Company. Later, it became Rover Group. Currently, it is owned by BMW.

In 2001, BMW introduced the MINI. The MINI currently has three Cooper models. Their main differences being the size of the engine and the horsepower rating. A convertible has also been included to the line-up.
By Daniel Vaughan | Jan 2007

Three generations of driving fun: The MINI Cooper and MINI Cooper S through the years.

For three generations and over 50 years, the Cooper name has identified a MINI offering even more in the way of driving fun. The idea, hatched by brilliant Formula One designer John Cooper, to fuel the agile small car wîth an extra hit of performance and turn it into a sporting machine for the road and track has lost none of its appeal. But the Cooper has never been about horsepower, as a comparison between the classic Mini and its two successors resoundingly proves. The key here is the basic principle of the creative use of space, combined wîth the inimitable go-kart feeling that runs like a thread through the three generations of the legendary small car. These famous handling traits are enjoyed by drivers on bendy country roads and city streets around the world, wîth the classic Mini and 21st-century MINI still regularly crossing each other's path.

The small British car positively craves twists and turns demanding quick and precise changes in direction; this is where it feels most at home. The classic Mini was tailor-made for tackling hairpins and corner-strewn roads, and it still looks the part today – aided by the healthy 46 kW/63 hp available in a Mini Cooper towards the end of its production run. The classic Cooper was built up to autumn 2000, by which time its successor was already twitching in the starting blocks. In contrast to the original Mini, the new model was available in Cooper guise from the outset. And wîth 85 kW/115 hp under the bonnet, it would do its nameplate proud. From the word go, the car's powerplant and chassis formed a harmonious alliance to deliver unbeatable driving fun. As John Cooper realised, sometimes you actually can't have too much of a good thing. 50 years ago he unveiled the 70 hp Mini Cooper S. And today, its youngest descendant places 135 kW/184 hp at the disposal of its driver. As if that wasn't enough, the turbocharged engine powering the latest MINI Cooper S also sets the benchmark for efficiency in its output class.

When Alec Issigonis set out to develop a new small car for the British Motor Corporation in the mid-1950s, his priorities were space and price. Indeed, at a touch over three metres in length, the classic Mini offered astonishingly generous accommodation for passengers and their gear alike. Issigonis settled on a front transverse installation for the four-cylinder engine, under which lay the gearbox, plumb between the wheels. The positioning of those wheels at the far corners of the car and the Mini's short overhangs did the rest. The Mini was small on the outside but roomy on the inside, not to mention – at around 600 kilograms – extremely light. The principles underpinning its design remain the template for small and compact cars in the modern era.

However, it was left to another key figure in the brand's history to uncover the vast well of sporting talent under that diminutive shell. John Cooper, a friend and business partner of Mini creator Issigonis and winner of two Formula One constructors' world titles, was quick to spot the car's dynamic potential, and in 1961 the first Mini Cooper hit the roads. Production of the Cooper was temporarily suspended in the 1970s, but by that time the Mini Cooper badge had long since become the signature of a sporty and agile small car.

As well as the intervention of John Cooper, the launch of this famous sporting career also relied on the brilliance of the classic Mini's chassis. Issigonis had broken new ground wîth the §teering and suspension of his new creation, and in so doing laid the foundations for the go-kart feeling appreciated by drivers to this day. Homokinetic joints reduced torque steer, a subframe (to which the rear wheels were fixed) improved directional stability, and rubber springs and small telescopic dampers ensured accurate responses and progressive spring action. The wealth of ideas packed into this small car still impresses. And the result of those ideas – the classic Mini's much-celebrated handling – explains why the car continues to enjoy such a loyal community of fans. When the successor to the original car came along in 2001, it was clear that highly advanced chassis technology would be needed in order to set the pace in driving fun all over again. The MINI Cooper rose to the challenge in some style, thanks to MacPherson spring struts at the front axle, axle shafts equal in length, a multi-link rear axle unique in the small car §egmènt, disc brakes on all four wheels, and DSC (Dynamic Stability Control).

The latest-generation MINI Cooper S also features Electric Power Steering wîth Servotronic function and a DSC system including DTC (Dynamic Traction Control) and an electronic locking function for the front axle differential. Known as Electronic Differential Lock Control (EDLC), this system gives the MINI a crucial edge through the tight bends of Alpine passes, for example, by braking a spinning wheel as required to enhance drive out of corners as well as the car's §teering properties. Added to which, pressing the standard Sport Button in the MINI Cooper S makes the §teering even more direct and stirs up a particularly sporty soundtrack from the engine. All of this was unimaginable 50 years ago, of course, but you get the impression John Cooper would have wholeheartedly approved.

Source - BMW
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