You might not have known from looking at it, but even after the second-generation new MINI came out, the convertible version carried on from the previous incarnation. But the BMW subsidiary has been hard at work on its replacement, set to join the standard hatchback and the upcoming Clubman wagon in the lineup ahead of the crossover version.

Opting for a soft top instead of a folding metal roof, the new MINI cabrio's is fully automatic and features an intriguing half-fold mechanism that allows the driver to open just the top instead of the entire roof to expose just the front two seats to the open air, targa-style. Reports also suggest that the fixed chrome roll-over hoops behind the rear seat headrests on the outgoing model will be ditched in favor of deployable emergency units.

The rear-angle spy shot, meanwhile, shows that with the roof up or halfway open, rearward visibility will be severely compromised, with enormous C-pillars creating large blind spots. Guess that means drivers will just have to keep the top down altogether. Oh well.

[Source: Auto Express]