2020 MINI Cooper Already in Development

MINI JCW Concept 1 photo
Photo: MINI
Times are changing and, along with them, so are we. The demands of today are extremely different than those of the 1990s or even further back in time. With overcrowding and over 7 billion people in the world, all of them looking for a place of their own inside a big city, the configuration of metropolitan areas will change drastically in the next years.
Just take a look over the biggest cities in Asia, for example. In New Delhi people are basically sleeping on the streets, just to be a part of the big picture while in China’s huge cities the air is so polluted that some people actually make a lot of good money selling cans of fresh air.

The pollution and overcrowding will drive even auto manufacturers in different directions. According to Edmunds, BMW already started working on the 2020 MINI and there might be a radical change hidden in the future plans for the brand.

And it would make sense, especially if the direction they’re going for is towards smaller cars and engines. An all-electric model should be available in the next few years and not necessarily as back as 2020. The technology already exists and test cars fitted with it have already been used as part of the research and development for the i sub-brand. They were called Mini E.

Furthermore, by now, the brand has a completely new image, pushed by BMW. Sure, the old fanatics will still long for the original model but they don’t represent the majority of the customers by now. Most of them are young and know the new MINI, the one that is a fun car to drive as well as a lifestyle statement. In that direction, the British will make more investments.

Going back to overcrowded cities, the upcoming models might see a decrease in size, to deal better with the busy city streets, coming closer to the initial concept that was supposed to make living in a resource-tight economy easier.

The engines might go down a bit more, too. The 1.5-liter unit used today in the Cooper model could be fitting the next JCW as engine bay space might become a problem. The current 2-liter units were mostly used as an experiment to see how they cope with daily usage before being used on a bigger scale inside BMWs.

Lightweight materials from the i sub-brand, like CFRP, magnesium and aluminum could also be implemented as the current generation doesn’t use them, at all. It would be a mandatory move if the engines are to be downsized.

Even the design will probably change, in an attempt to make the brand even more popular. The current model is not a great looking car and BMW wants to address that issue by creating a design studio in Britain, with British designers involved. They even talked about it a while back.

While styling changes are inevitable, certain key elements will remain, to make sure the brand’s DNA is diluted only to a certain point. Even so, we still have to wait around six years before anything is confirmed so you’d better hang on tight.
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