Prices for the Mini Paceman, officially revealed in these pictures for the first time, will start from £18,970 when the three-door coupé goes on sale in the UK next March. It has made its debut at the Paris motor show.

Mini will offer seven Paceman variants, although a spicier John Cooper Works Paceman is planned at a later date.

The base-level Cooper is driven by an 119bhp, 118lb ft version of the turbocharged 1.6-litre, four-pot petrol motor. The more powerful Cooper S has 181bhp, 177lb ft and can sprint from 0-62mph in 7.5sec. It is available as either front-wheel drive or four-wheel-drive ‘ALL4’ variant, as are both the oilburners on offer, although the all-paw option will cost you an extra £1100.

The cheapest diesel option is the front-wheel drive Cooper D, which boasts 110bhp and 199lb ft and costs £20,210. It is also the most frugal car on offer in the range, returning a claimed combined consumption of 64.2mpg when mated to a six-speed manual transmission. The Cooper SD produces 141bhp and 225lb ft, but is the most expensive version at £23,070 in two-wheel-drive form.

The Paceman aims to deliver a sportier drive than the Countryman while providing more space than the standard Mini hatch. The springs and shock absorbers have been retuned to offer more direct handling.

Lowered suspension is part of the Paceman’s standard specification, but the car can be ordered with regular suspension and ride height as a no-cost option.

It sits on the same floor structure as the Countryman and shares the five-door’s wheelbase and track. The four-seater’s roof is 40mm lower at 1518mm, but headroom is only reduced by 10mm, in part because it also rides 10cm closer to the ground than its bigger brother.

Boot space is 330 litres – about 20 litres down on the Countryman – increasing to 1080 litres when the rear seats are folded flat.