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Cooper S

MINI is both the name of a subsidiary of BMW, and a car produced by that subsidiary since 2001. The car is marketed as a "retro" redesign of the original Mini, which was manufactured by the British Motor Corporation and its successors from 1959 to 2000. To distinguish it from its predecessor (the 'classic Mini'), the brand name for the new car is MINI (written in capital letters). It is often called 'The BMW MINI', 'The New MINI', or simply 'MINI'. The MINI is manufactured in Cowley in Oxford, United Kingdom, in what was historically the Morris car plant.

Prototype and concept cars

BMW first showed the MINI as a concept car that looked very different from the production cars. It had circular headlamps, huge wheel flares and a much more rounded appearance overall compared to the production design.

Before the first sales of the MINI, prototype versions were shown at the 2000 Paris Auto Show. These were essentially identical to the version that was finally sold except that the colours used ('Candy Blue' and 'Flamenco Orange') have never been used in production cars.

BMW demonstrated a hydrogen-powered internal combustion technology in some of their concept cars in 2000 and 2001, and MINI showcased a hydrogen powered concept car in 2001 at the Frankfurt Auto Show. The car differs from electric-motor hydrogen concepts, such as the Honda FCX in that it uses a cylinder-based internal combustion engine.

MINI Traveller concept car at the 2006 Detroit Auto Show

An all-electric MINI is in use at the British Embassy in Mexico that uses around 200 kg of Lithium Ion batteries. Three electric MINIs were also made for use in some subway scenes in the 2003 movie The Italian Job to satisfy the subway authorities concerns over possible carbon monoxide poisoning.

With higher powered engines, the standard front wheel drive MINI tends to produce more wheel spin instead of more acceleration — four wheel drive would be a natural solution to that problem. Getrag (who make the MINI's gearbox) demonstrated a four wheel drive version of the MINI in 2004.

At the Frankfurt Motor show in 2005, MINI revealed a retro version of the classic 'Mini Traveller' station wagon. Based on a stretched wheelbase with two side-hinged rear doors and separate rear seats replacing the split bench seat of the standard MINI. At the Tokyo show, the same basic concept reappeared with some fanciful additions — a circular roof section could be removed to form a picnic table with four folding chairs. The rear side windows were replaced with fold-down storage containers containing cutlery, cups and plates. In Detroit, a further version was presented without the table and chairs — but with a radically restyled interior.

Additional MINI models, including a four-door version, a two-seat roadster and a dune buggy have been shown as computer-graphic mock-ups at various times.

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The BMW Group

BMW | Rolls-Royce | MINI

Current: Cooper · Cooper S · Cooper D · Clubman · Countryman · Coupé

Historic: Cooper Classic

Concept: E EV · ACV30 Concept · Traveller Clubman Concept · Crossover Concept · Clubman Airstream Trailer Concept · Coupé Concept · Roadster Concept · Beachcomber Concept · Paceman Concept

Racing: Countryman WRC · ALL4 Racing Countryman

Frank Stephenson · British Leyland Motor Corporation · Rover Group

Sir Alec Issigonis Corporate website A Subsidiary of the BMW Group

Mini | Cooper Car Company | BMW MINI | Mini Moke | vehicle timeline, 1959 to present - [edit]
Model 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s
9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Mini Mk I Mk II Mk III
Cooper Mk I Cooper Mk II Cooper RSP Cooper
Cooper S Mk I Cooper S Mk II Cooper S Mk III Cooper S ERA
Innocenti Cooper Cooper 1300
Authi Mk II Cooper 1300
Clubman Clubman & 1275GT
Hornet Wolseley Hornet
Elf Riley Elf
Moke Moke (UK) Moke (Australia) Moke (Portugal)
Pickup Mini Pickup Mini 95
Van Mini Van Mini 95
Estate Traveller & Countryman Mk II MINI Traveller
Cabrio Rover Cabrio Mk I MINI Cabrio Mk II MINI Cabrio
Engines: A-Series engine | Tritec engine | Prince engine


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