It’s looking likely that Brexit will go down to the wire and BMW is one of a number of UK-based car makers that has brought forward its summer shutdown to the end of March in case the UK leaves the EU without a formal deal. 

However, Autocar has heard two separately sourced suggestions that this move at Plant Oxford could be part of the preparation for a significant reshuffle of its output over the next few years. 

The first hint was that BMW’s number-crunchers – enabled by the data generated from the company’s many thousands of PCP-financed Mini sales – are expecting a noticeable downturn in UK demand for the entry-level Mini hatchbacks, possibly as early as this summer.