BMW and Toyota Reportedly Teaming Up for the Mini Minor

Mini Cooper Logo

As the old saying goes, good things come in small packages – and it looks like BMW and Toyota are setting out to prove just that. It seems like it may take two auto manufacturing giants to build one of the world’s smallest cars: the Mini Minor. As the vehicle is unconfirmed (though likely to be produced), no release date has been set.

Mechanic program graduates won’t have to wait too long to take a peek under the hood of one of these creations. The huge amount of attention the project has garnered should guarantee that auto sales college grads will get the chance to sell the Mini Minor soon enough.

Here’s what we do know:

BMW and Toyota Collaboration History

This would be the first time the companies collaborated on an entry-level hatchback. If the concept hits it big, it probably won’t be the last time both companies’ engineers will have their auto careers intertwined. BMW and Toyota have been working together on other projects for some time now. The relationship began in 2003 when Toyota allowed its diesel engine to be included in the very first diesel Mini (Mini is owned by BMW).

In 2011, the pair reunited and signed an agreement to exchange technology. Toyota offered its fuel cell developments in exchange for BMW’s diesel engines. The German automaker would also build and design a replacement for the Supra Coupe, a rear-wheel drive vehicle for Toyota that would be paired with a replacement for its own Z4 Roadster.

This would be the first time the companies collaborated on an entry-level hatchback. If it works, though, it probably won’t be the last.

What’s the New Mini Minor Supposed to be Like?

The Mini Minor has its history, too. In fact, some of the very first Minis were called Mini Minor back in the late 1950s and 1960s. It has been a while since this name was used, though. Will the new Mini Minor resemble its predecessor? Well, let’s have a look at what we do know or rather what we think we know. Some of this is from what Automobile Magazine heard from their sources:

  • It will be an entry level car, priced around $15,000
  •  It will be a hatchback
  • It will combine elements from Mini’s Paceman and the Rocketman concept car that made an appearance at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show
  • It will be small – much more compact than your average Mini
  • There will be double bubble rear-roof section
  • It will have upright Union Jack taillights
  • It will be a no-frills car or, as the magazine quoted their source, have “a serious lack of bling”
  • It will be one of five pillars the Mini brand will operate under for a while along with the hardtop, the convertible, the Clubman wagon (upcoming), the next-gen Countryman crossover (2016) and the Superleggera roadster concept (potentially 2018)
  • There may be an electric or hybrid version in the works as well

 

Are you excited for the new Mini Minor? Do you think the product will live up to the hype?

Categories: ATC News, Surrey

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