Just as MINI is ramping up to launch the Clubman wagon in addition to its current lineup for 2008, rumors are flying about a possible MINI compact sport utility vehicle, reportedly inspired by the Austin Ant and MINI Moke, dunebuggy-ish off-roaders originally designed for the British military. BMW's California DesignWorks studio is apparently already working on a design, and production would likely take place in the U.S. at BMW's Spartanburg plant. It would include BMW's xDrive all-wheel drive and rumor has it that the CUV would actually be based on the same platform as the BMW 1-Series.

Thanks to the Spartanburg plant's flexible manufacturing system, the CUV would be right at home next to the BMW X5 and Z4 roadster models, odd as that may sound.

Click through to the link to see a concept drawing of the MINI SUV and some spy photos of the Clubman.

[Source: World Car Fans]