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Mini Pulls Ads After Wambach DUI Arrest

Soccer star was not driving a Mini at time of arrest.

by on Apr.04, 2016

Mini pulled its ad featuring U.S. soccer star Abby Wambach after she was arrested for driving under the influence. She was not in a Mini at the time.

One of the stars of Mini’s Super Bowl ad called “Defy Labels,” Abby Wambach, was arrested and charged for driving under the influence, causing the company to pull its ads and re-evaluate its relationship with the soccer star.

Wambach is the most prolific scorer in soccer history and an emerging leader in the LGBT community. In the ad, she appears standing in the driver’s side door of a Mini Clubman and says “This is a gay car” while using air quotes to emphasize the word “gay.”

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“We’re obviously concerned about the alleged DUI attributed to Abby Wambach,” the brand said in a statement to Automotive News. “This behavior is against the values we promote as an organization and the safety of everyone on the road is a priority here at Mini. (more…)

Mini Debuts New Clubman ALL4, JCW Convertible

New iterations hit the stage at New York Auto Show.

by on Mar.22, 2016

The new Mini John Cooper Works convertible puts out 228 hp and clocks zero-to-60 mph in just 6.3 seconds.

Often the New York Auto Show is seen as one of the signs of spring and Mini is ensuring view with the debut of its John Cooper Works convertible as well as the new Clubman ALL4 during the event.

The new JCW variant of the convertible is a four-seater offering plenty of go to match the show. Offered in its characteristic forest green exterior with black interior trimmed with red accents, this iteration boasts the first engine from the BMW Group.

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The droptop rocket’s 2.0-liter twin-turbo four cylinder puts out 228 horsepower pushing it from zero-to-60 mph in 6.3 seconds for the automatic and 6.4 seconds for the manual. It also features a sports exhaust to give it throaty roar as well as racing-oriented suspension to make it a high performance vehicle. (more…)

Mini Goes ALL4 with Clubman

All-wheel-drive system starts at $25,900.

by on Jan.20, 2016

The Mini Clubman will get all-wheel-drive for the first time with the addition of the All4 system.

With winter finally bringing on its worst in many parts of the country, Mini’s latest product announcement probably couldn’t be better timed. The British automaker is set to offer its ALL4 all-wheel-drive system on the Clubman model for the first time.

The longest model in the Mini line-up, the Clubman was completely redesigned this year – and, like the rest of the marque’s models, it’s a bit larger and more lavishly equipped. The availability of all-wheel-drive should expand its appeal to buyers in snowier climes.

Product News!

The all-wheel-drive system will be offered as an option on all trim levels of the new Mini Clubman, starting with the base Cooper at $25,900.  The Mini Cooper S Clubman ALL4 will carry a sticker of $29,450.

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Mini Revs Up Ragtop with JCW Edition

Announces base price of $25,950 for Mini Cooper Convertible.

by on Jan.15, 2016

Mini bills its new John Cooper Works convertible as its fastest, most-powerful convertible ever.

Mini was noticeably absent at this year’s North American International Auto Show, but that doesn’t mean the British brand doesn’t have some news to make.

Following up on the recent reveal of its next-generation convertible, it’s rolling out what it bills as “the fastest, most powerful convertible it has ever built,” the new Mini John Cooper Works Convertible.

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“The new Convertible has all of the legendary driving performance you expect in a Mini yet with interior materials and finishes which set a new benchmark for the segment,” boasts Patrick McKenna, department head, Product Planning, Mini USA. (more…)

NHTSA Slams BMW with $40 Million Fine

Maker failed to report side-impact crash defect.

by on Dec.22, 2015

The 2014 and 2015 Mini Cooper two-door hardtop failed U.S.-mandated side-impact crash tests. BMW failed to fix the problem and failed to inform owners.

Federal safety regulators continue to crack down on automakers that fail to report problems quickly as BMW agreed to a possible $40 million fine for issues related to its Mini brand.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration levied the punishment after the automaker failed tell owners about a recall of the Mini Cooper that failed a side-impact airbag crash test.

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The company agreed to a $10 million penalty and to spend $10 million correcting the problem. BMW could be assessed an additional $20 million if it doesn’t meet certain criteria for fixing the problems long-term, according to NHTSA. (more…)

Mini Uncovers New Convertible

Bigger is better?

by on Oct.22, 2015

The new Mini Convertible grows by more than four inches and gains plenty of interior space.

The Mini makeover, it seems, is in full swing, and the latest addition to the British maker’s line-up comes with a makeover of the Mini Convertible.

As with other recent remakes, the 2017 Mini Convertible grows a little larger than the outgoing ragtop, with a bit more emphasis on practicality this time around. But the fun factor isn’t being played down, and like the new Mini Hardtop launched last year, the Convertible now shares its underlying architecture, as well as its powertrain options, with Mini’s sibling BMW brand.

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“The new MINI Convertible has a great balance of playful personalization and sophistication. It’s open-top driving without compromise,” says David Duncan, vice president MINI of the Americas, adding that, “The front wheel drive BMW architecture and engines make it fun-to-drive and practical in any driving conditions.”

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Mini Expands its Flagship Crossover Model

2016 Clubman makes Frankfurt debut.

by on Sep.14, 2015

The next-generation Mini Clubman hits a bit of a growth spurt for 2016 meaning more room for cargo, people and even doors!

Compact crossovers are growing, not just in terms of sales, but also in size and one of the originals, the Mini Clubman, is going through a growth spurt like everyone else.

Debuting at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the next-gen Clubman reasserts its position as the brand’s most versatile vehicle – something that had been lost as models like the Countryman and even the original hardtop offered more doors and interior space.

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The first difference is in the number of doors: six. More doors equal easier access to, well, everything. A pair of split doors on the back of the new model provide simpler and improved access to the rear cargo area…and provide the extra door. (more…)

Mini Going Maxi with New Clubman

British maker continues growing its line-up.

by on Jun.25, 2015

Mini is rolling out a larger Clubman for 2016. The five-passenger crossover is the result of customer demand.

Mini is pushing it to the max with the launch of an all-new version of its Clubman model.

The British automaker made its splashy return to the U.S. a decade ago by offering some of the smallest cars on the market, starting with the little Cooper. But it has been growing the brand, quite literally, in recent years. Not only has it added more models, but also they all seem to be taking steroids.

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There was the Countryman, Mini’s first four-door and its first SUV. Then it relaunched the original Hardtop in notably larger form. The 2016 Mini Clubman continues this growth pattern, becoming the biggest Mini on the market, if that is not an oxymoron. (more…)

Car as Art: Automakers Redesign the Bicycle, Sofa – Even the Sandwich

Makers show their artistic side at Italian fashion event.

by on Apr.14, 2015

Ford's design team created non-automotive products based on the GT. The best designs, including this guitar, are on display at the Salone del Mobile in Italy.

It’s not unusual for car aficionados to claim that cars are art. In fact, top auto designers usually attend the world’s best design schools before they are scooped up by auto companies.

While most of the time, their creativity shows up atop four wheels, this week artists from Ford, Mazda and Mini are displaying their artistic creations at the Salone del Mobile in Milan, Italy.

Design News!

Ford designers were challenged by the maker’s creative chief, Moray Callum, to produce non-automotive projects for the show. (more…)

Mini Gives Drivers a Head-Up with New Glasses

Maker’s Augmented Vision system debuts in Shanghai.

by on Apr.14, 2015

Using see-through technology, the AR eyewear shows relevant information in the driver’s direct field of vision but without concealing other road users.

Head-up displays have been in cars for more than two decades now giving drivers a simple way to see necessary information. The technology, which was borrowed from fighter jets, is supposed to make driving safer.

The technology isn’t widely used because it just hasn’t captured the fancy of U.S. drivers in the same way other advanced options have. However, Mini is offering a new take on it that might make it more appealing with its Augmented Vision glasses.

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Instead of throwing information the windshield, the driver wears special augmented reality glasses that are connected to the car, according to the maker. Mini plans to introduce the system at the Shanghai Motor Show this week. (more…)