BMW has trademarked the Countryman and ActiveE names, prompting feverish speculation suggesting that the upcoming Mini crossover will take the Countryman name.
The Mini 4x4 had been expected to be called Crossman, and is expected to be unveiled in production form at this year's Frankfurt motor show.
The Countryman name originates from the Austin Seven Countryman, which was launched in 1960 with its Morris counterpart, the Morris Mini Traveller. They were the long-wheelbase versions of the Austin Seven and Morris Mini Minor, offering improved luggage capacity and flexibility.
It is not known where BMW intends to apply the ActiveE name, although it has been suggested it could be applied to its upcoming electric vehicles.
That would tie-in with the ActiveHybrid moniker BMW applies to its hybrid cars.
BMW also trademarked the name eDrive last year. Again, this is expected to feature on the firm's electric car range.