Mini has confirmed plans for a dramatically revamped range comprising separate petrol and electric versions of its three-door flagship Mini hatchback, a small electric crossover and a larger Countryman SUV.
Autocar joined Mini for a round of winter testing in a development prototype of the upcoming electric hatchback, where the company confirmed that over the next five years, its model range will undergo rationalisation and a big push towards electric powertrains.
The core of the range, as before, will be the classic three-door hatchback, but buyers will have a choice of two electric powertrains.
Unlike the current Mini Electric, which is based on a platform that wasn’t originally designed with electrification in mind, the new electric models will be mechanically unrelated to petrol-engined Minis.
However, they will continue to look very similar. A long-mooted city car that was set to take the Minor name back into production and serve as a rival to the Honda E is now off the table, Mini has confirmed. Ever since Mini revealed the much-loved Rocketman concept back in 2011, it has been speculated that a city car could be introduced to sit beneath the supermini.
Instead, Mini has now managed to make the core three-door hatchback slightly shorter.
It will lose a chunk of its lengthy front overhang to bring the design closer to that of the Sir Alec Issigonis-designed original 1959 Mini and BMW’s 2000 revival. The wheelbase, meanwhile, will grow by around 40mm to boost interior space, and the track will be widened.
Mini design boss Oliver Heilmer has previously said he is looking to “reduce Mini design as much as possible”, with the aim of taking out ornamental elements.