History of the iconic brand detailed in new exhibition with concepts and production cars
2 December 2014

BMW has opened an exhibition at its Munich-based museum celebrating 55 years of ‘The Mini Story’. Running until 31 January 2016, it features "30 original vehicles, exhibits and accessories" from the brand’s history. 

As well a number of historic and unusual classic Minis, BMW is exhibiting a range of Mini concepts, including the two concepts that preceded the launch of the all-new BMW Mini in 2001.

The AVC 30 concept, which was based on the MGF, was an interpretation of Mini’s racing heritage and was designed by BMW’s now design boss Adrian van Hooydonk. The two-door Spiritual concept was generated by Rover Group designers, led by David Saddington.

Both concepts were used by BMW and its Rover Group subsidiary to help define the direction for a reinvented Mini. The AVC30 was inspired by the Mini’s reputation for driving dynamics and its competition history. The Spirtual (which was also produced in five-door form) was rear-engined and inspired by the original Mini’s landmark use of internal space.

As part of the exhibition, BMW has also built a replica of an experimental four-door Mini that was constructed by Austin-Morris in the early 1960s. Based on period photos, the new car is based on a later-model Mini Classic. 

BMW design sources say the original four-door was built on the same stretched wheelbase as the Mini Van, which was launched in 1960. One version used standard Mini front doors, which were flipped and rear-hinged, while nother version used a bespoke door design. Neither prototype survived when the company decided not to pursue the idea.

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Comments
19

2 December 2014
The Issigonis drawings are interesting but the larger his cars got, the less successful they were. Tiny cars don't "scale up" well and BMW face the same problem with Mini, today. Mind you the inclusion of this sketch is telling; they are clearly mindful of all the stick they took re the Countryman.

2 December 2014
Norma Smellons wrote:
The Issigonis drawings are interesting but the larger his cars got, the less successful they were. Tiny cars don't "scale up" well and BMW face the same problem with Mini, today. Mind you the inclusion of this sketch is telling; they are clearly mindful of all the stick they took re the Countryman.
Are you serious ? ! The 1100/1300 sold massively well. The Spiritual and Spiritual Two concepts were what the New Mini should have been, not the over-infalted pastiches BMW has been selling since 2001.

2 December 2014
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.

2 December 2014
Ruperts Trooper wrote:
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.
I assume that it is because that is where the MINI story continues.

2 December 2014
superstevie wrote:
Ruperts Trooper wrote:
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.
I assume that it is because that is where the MINI story continues.
They are still buit here aren't they? Or is that something I've missed

2 December 2014
hardshoulder wrote:
superstevie wrote:
Ruperts Trooper wrote:
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.
I assume that it is because that is where the MINI story continues.
They are still buit here aren't they? Or is that something I've missed
Yes they are, and they remain as "British" as Jaguar, Land-Rover, Rolls-Royce or Bentley. What's past is past and, IMHO, we should celebrate the jobs supported and export earnings achieved by these companies. On another matter, I'm struck by the similarities in shape, if not scale, between the original and new MINI's front and rear view detailing. Perhaps the designers, stung by criticism of the F56, are trying to show what inspired them? Also, should we begin a campaign for this exhibition to be staged in Britain when it finishes in Germany? Finally, I saw my first new five-door MINI in a showroom recently: the "bustle" at the back to increase boot room is neat, but those door window frames are really thick and horrible looking. This nasty bit of cost-cutting has squandered one of the cool USP's of the three door. We would like eventually to replace our F56 Cooper with a somewhat larger car, so I hope the forthcoming Clubman doesn't repeat this error.

2 December 2014
hardshoulder wrote:
superstevie wrote:
Ruperts Trooper wrote:
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.
I assume that it is because that is where the MINI story continues.
They are still buit here aren't they? Or is that something I've missed
Yes, they are. They're also built Austria, and assembled for other markets in India,Thailand and Malaysia. They're designed in Munich though, which is why the museum is there

3 December 2014
superstevie wrote:
hardshoulder wrote:
superstevie wrote:
Ruperts Trooper wrote:
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.
I assume that it is because that is where the MINI story continues.
They are still buit here aren't they? Or is that something I've missed
Yes, they are. They're also built Austria, and assembled for other markets in India,Thailand and Malaysia. They're designed in Munich though, which is why the museum is there
Ah so echoing the original in the sense that they're built in more than one country eh!

2 December 2014
Ruperts Trooper wrote:
It's simply ridiculous beyond words that the "Mini Story" isn't in England.
I wonder why you care so much where the Mini exhibition is? Isn't it nice to show our German friends the history of the marque?

2 December 2014
The "Mini story" does not deserve to be in England given the utterly hopeless way we ran the company. We destroyed it and are lucky to still have the manufacturing jobs. Meanwhile, compare how the Chinese are doing with "MG" vs the Germans with Mini and remember that, for much of the 70's and 80's, MG was reckoned to be the stronger brand.

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