The third-generation model will soldier on because it's unclear whether there will be trade tariffs between the UK and EU.
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The third-generation Mini went into production in late 2013 and will outlive the first two generations, which stayed in production for six to seven years each.

Maximilian Schöberl, BMW's head of corporate and governmental affairs, told Reuters, "The lifespan of this platform has been extended for cost reasons and because of Brexit".

Although Great Britain formally left the European Union at 11pm on January 31, local time, there is a transition period until the end of the year where, effectively, nothing changes.

During this time the EU and UK will negotiate their future free-trade agreement. It's not clear at this stage whether the UK will stay aligned with the EU's rules and regulations, or whether products made in the UK will be subject to EU tariffs.

Currently most Mini models sold throughout the world are made at the company's factory in Oxford, England, and by contract manufacturer VDL Nedcar in Born, the Netherlands.

“If tariffs are in the range of zero and five per cent, the business case would not dramatically change,” Oliver Zipse, BMW's CEO, said last year.

On the cost side, automakers have also been looking for ways to reduce vehicle development costs as they invest in electrified or alternative fuel drivetrains, as well as new technologies, such as ride sharing and autonomous driving.

BMW has signed a deal with Great Wall to develop electric models for the Chinese market.

There's also the issue of ever-tighter emissions regulations, which necessitate the inclusion of more expensive exhaust systems, squeezing the already tight margins for smaller vehicles.

In the class below, the Ford Ka, Opel Adam and Karl have been axed already, while Peugeot 108 and Citroen C1 will join them at the end of their product cycle.

Premium-priced models endure, but Smart has shifted to an all-electric lineup and will source its next generation of vehicles from China.

Fiat is working on a new 500, and it will be available with both internal combustion engines and an all-electric powertrain.