MINI To Replace 5-Door Hatch With A Small Electric Crossover
Electrification will bring big changes in MINI’s range, with a new and already confirmed electric small crossover coming to fill up the gap between the upcoming three-door MINI Hatch EV and the next-generation MINI Countryman while serving as an indirect replacement for both the five-door Hatch and the Clubman.
The fact that the Countryman grows in size with each generation, has created the space in MINI’s lineup for a smaller crossover. Indeed, the next Countryman – set to be unveiled this year in both ICE-powered and fully electric forms – will be a full 200 mm (7.5-8.0 inches) longer than the model it replaces. Its significantly larger footprint will make it more suitable for families. MINI can’t afford to abandon this highly popular segment, thus an all-new model line is coming our way supposedly before the end of the year.
Autocar reports that the new crossover will likely come with a more radical design compared to the rest of the retro-flavored range. This would align well with the young demographic of small crossover buyers, breathing new life into MINI’s design language.
As a high-riding model based on an EV-dedicated architecture, we also expect it to offer good practicality for its size. In terms of rivals, it could compete with the DS 3 Crossback E-Tense, the Peugeot e-2008, the upcoming Alfa Romeo Brennero, and its Jeep EV sibling, but also with the slightly larger smart #1.
The MINI Clubman compact hatchback/estate and the five-door MINI Hatch have a high chance of not getting an electric successor like the rest of the range.
The all-new MINI Hatch EV is three-door-only, and while the ICE-powered Hatch/Cabrio range will be getting another facelift to stay relevant for a few more years, it will be discontinued before the end of the decade when MINI becomes an EV-only brand.
Starting from 2023, the yet-unnamed crossover will be built in China by the Spotlight Automotive joint venture between BMW Group and Great Wall Motor, alongside the new MINI Hatch EV. With a reveal in late 2022, we expect to learn more about the latest addition to the MINI range in the coming months while we wouldn’t be surprised if we come across spy shots of prototypes during development.