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by Tim Beissmann

CarAdvice’s spy photographers have snapped a revealing interior image of the new Mini Clubman, uncovering the upcoming six-door model’s unique dashboard design.

The most obvious difference between the dashboard of the Clubman and the three- and five-door hatch models is the cluster of controls in the lower half of the centre stack.

As the image shows, the panel containing the climate control dials, and buttons and toggle switches for other functions protrudes in the Clubman, unlike in the hatchback where it’s set back.

It forms part of a redesigned centre tunnel, which extends from the base of the centre stack and houses the gear lever, a new electric park brake (distinct from the manual handbrake of the hatches) and centre armrest.

Rectangular air vents also replace the hatches’ circular vents at the edges of the Clubman’s upper dash.

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These latest spy shots suggest development of the new-generation Mini Clubman is nearing the final stages, with only light camouflage covering the exterior panels.

The production version is set to debut at September’s Frankfurt motor show, and appears likely to closely resemble the Clubman concept that first appeared at last year’s Geneva motor show.

The new model ditches the existing car’s awkward right-side rear ‘club door’ in favour of conventionally hinged rear doors on both sides, which promise to significantly improve practicality and second-row accessibility.

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The rear retains the original Clubman’s signature side-hinged twin barn doors, which will open up to a much larger boot than that of its predecessor thanks to the new car’s larger dimensions.

The Clubman concept was 262 millimetres longer, 161mm wider and 18mm taller than the outgoing model, and the production version is expected to closely mirror those measurements (4223mm long, 1844mm wide and 1450mm tall).

The new Clubman is set to reach Australian showrooms either late this year or early in 2016.

Click the Photos tab for more 2016 Mini Clubman images.




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