Mini kicked off its 50th anniversary celebration with a birthday party in Nice, France where a select group of journalists were give an glimpse at Mini's plans for Frankfurt and beyond.

Matt Davis from Inside Line was in attendance and snapped a shot (right) of the Mini Roadster concept ahead of its Frankfurt Motor Show debut, and plugged some of the automaker's execs for information on Mini's plan for the future.

Aside from the Mini Coupe and Roadster, which will reportedly, "be produced for the 2011 model year and both will be available on all our world markets," the Mini Crossover has been delayed as the automaker rethinks its brand position. However, the 'ute is still supposedly a go and will be revealed in early 2010 (we're thinking Detroit) and likely go on sale late next year.

There's also rumors of a possible tie-up between BMW and a yet-to-be-named Japanese automaker (IL lists Toyota as the likely partner), although details on the deal are scarce... at best. And, of course, there's continued speculation surrounding the future of BMW's super-subcompact range, with a Mini-based Isetta revival that could arrive within the next two years. For now, it's merely conjecture, but at the Frankfurt show next month, we should have a clearer indication of what direction Mini will take in the coming years.

[Source: Inside Line]