MINI's Presumed Sedan Might Be Called Riley, Sources Say

MINI is preparing a fifth model for its range, and all accounts bet on a saloon as a body style.
MINI Clubman ALL4 1 photo
Photo: MINI
This time, a new report suggests the Riley name for the upcoming MINI sedan. The information might have some truth behind it, as BMW Group, owner of the MINI brand, is also in possession of the trademark for the name.

British readers might remember that there was a Riley sedan in the 1960s, so there is a possibility of returning to the historical nameplate for the first modern saloon of the Oxford brand.

The name Riley belonged to a bicycle and automobile maker that was merged with the British Leyland Motor Corporation in 1968.

After BMW’s acquisition of the MINI brand, the trademark for Riley was included, and since the company did have a Mini-based sedan in the range, one should not exclude the possibility of resurrecting the name.

The first modern mention of the return of Riley was made in September 2010, by the Brits at Autocar. At the time, they said BMW Group insiders suggested MINI planned a redesigned luxury version of their models, which would be called Riley.

The car described by the insider was a “notchback,” so it would have been close to a saloon. This week, the same British publication reiterates the information, so take the Riley name with a grain of salt.

However, we must note that a premium sedan from MINI would not be an outrageous possibility. After all, the company seems to have tried everything else except for a seven-seat MPV, so why not a saloon? The BMW Group has confirmed their intention of building a sedan version of the next 1 Series, which will be based on the UKL platform.

As those who are familiar with BMW’s platform names already figured out, the UKL platform is also used by the current MINI Hatchback, as well as the MINI Clubman. Since the MINI range will be expanded with a fifth model, but volumes would not justify an all-new platform, it is becoming evident that the UKL will be used for the next MINI, no matter what its name will be.
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About the author: Sebastian Toma
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Sebastian's love for cars began at a young age. Little did he know that a career would emerge from this passion (and that it would not, sadly, involve being a professional racecar driver). In over fourteen years, he got behind the wheel of several hundred vehicles and in the offices of the most important car publications in his homeland.
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