Mini design director Adrian van Hooydonk spells out his plans for the brand's future.
Why did you commission the Mini design strategy?
We want to tighten up the definition of a Mini and nail the brand down. The strategy is not a cook book, giving an exact recipe on how to make a Mini look. It's more a series of guidelines. Over the next months and years, you will see Mini concepts trying out new interior and exterior ideas.
Isn't there a risk the next-gen Mini and new front-drive BMW will be too similar?
Before the new platform strategy was given the go-ahead, the BMW and Mini design teams built some proportion models to prove we can keep the two brands visually distinct. And we can make a Mini feel different from a BMW.What plays into our hands are chassis electronics, which allow us to manipulate the handling characteristics.
The Mini Roadster and Coupé will have limited lifespans. Are they part of the long-term future
I found it interesting to work on them; they¹re a kind of niche within a niche. And they had the quickest development time of any model developed by BMW.I can see true market potential for them. But market forces will determine if they become a permanent part of the Mini family.