Login to your account
Not a member? Register now.
AutoShopperBlog

Subscribe To The Blog:




Follow Us



The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry



Mini To Split Countryman Into Family MPV And SUV

Comments: Leave | View
On: Thu, Jul 12, 2012 at 10:52AM | By: Chris Weiss


Mini To Split Countryman Into Family MPV And SUV

Mini has realized that its Countryman isn't all that well defined. According to a new report, the BMW minicar brand plans to rectify the situation by replacing the Countryman with two separate models. It will introduce a family-hauling MPV and a harder, more believable SUV.

Though the Mini Countryman has been defined as a crossover, and it comes with optional all-wheel drive, it's a bit hard to accept an elongated, five-door Cooper as a true crossover. And it's not really a family hauler for grown up Mini fanatics, either. For all intents and purposes, it's basically just the awkward largest car in a brand that's defined by tiny cars.

According to Autocar, Mini will introduce a new MPV codenamed the Spacebox. This car will be laid out and marketed as a family car, leaving the Countryman to focus on being a through-and-through SUV. The next-generation Countryman will employ more rugged looks and should be recognizable as an SUV, unlike the current Mini five-door. It will share architecture with the BMW X1.

The Spacebox, meanwhile, will be designed as a family car, not just a bigger, four-door Cooper. There's no word on exactly what that will entail, but we'd imagine it will have to have seating for at least five and a flexible layout that maximizes capabilities for hauling family and belongings. It may need to grow a little, too, and maybe it'll borrow some equipment from the Clubvan. Maybe not.

Of course, as its line expands to encompass more vehicles of a larger build, Mini is slowly abandoning its heritage of being mini. Some critics already believe it sold out by making the Countryman, so a pair of larger models, both of which sound even less Mini-like than the current Countryman, should rattle the cages even more.

Then again, since when is any automaker all that concerned with selling out when there are (SUV-derived) profits to be made? Plus, Mini fans can look to the upcoming Countryman Coupe, which will debut at the Paris Motor Show, as proof that all is not lost.




Comments

Be the first to leave a comment.


Leave A Commment

Allowed HTML tags: <a href=""> <abbr title=""> <b> <em> <i>
Please no link dropping, no keywords or domains as names; do not spam, and do not advertise! rel="nofollow" is in use

Captcha