Mini’s future plans are already coming to fruition, as its parent company BMW is set to spearhead the British brand’s electric transformation with a new super-compact electric light hatch, a larger Countryman crossover SUV and a new long-range people mover.
Rumours also suggest Mini is planning to bring back the 'Minor' nameplate.
Autocar suggests the Minor will likely be based upon an all-new platform jointly developed between BMW and Great Wall Motors, to be built at a new Chinese facility that will ensure lower prices for the new Minor in China, as Mini's current importation arrangements mean expensive purchase prices for Chinese Mini buyers.
The creation of this new Chinese-built Mini Minor is expected to significantly bolster the brand's presence in China, and is likely to form the centrepiece of Mini’s future line-up in the country.
Above: Mini's all-electric Formula E safety car. Top: Our impression of the upcoming electric JCW GP.
Mini’s one-off Pacesetter electric concept – which will be used as the Formula E safety car – previews the future direction for the brand.
Cues will likely be taken from this concept in the development of a toned-down production version of Mini’s electric JCW, expected to launch in late 2021 or early 2022. The production electric JCW will have its work cut out for it, aiming to strike a fine balance between emissions-free motoring with the dynamic handling profile Minis are famous for.
Mini chief designer Oliver Heilmer signalled to Autocar that, while the company is cognisant of its history and trademark traits, the next-generation range is likely to branch out and adopt new styling features.
As Mini hurtles towards its 2030 electric-only line-up, another all-electric Mini has been spotted undergoing winter testing recently which could wear the aforementioned Mini Minor nameplate – though there's always a chance it could simply be our first look at the next-generation Mini three-door hatch.
The facelifted Mini hatch range will arrive in Australia in the second half of 2021 and tide the company over until the all-new car arrives at the beginning of 2023.