Mini announcess partnership to produce the Mini SAV

Although we aren't too fond of making an SUV SAV into a symbol of good fuel economy (and some people think that Mini has gone mad because of this announcement), plans for the new MINI Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) are moving ahead. MINI announced that the SAV will be built by Magna Steyr Fahrzeugtechnik in Graz, Austria, whch has previously produced BMW's X3. This move allows MINI to increase the number of models without needing to build a new plant. The standard Mini, the convertible and the Clubman are currently built in a plant in Oxford, England, which will shortly reach production figures of 260,000 vehicles per year.

The press release remarks that BMW will be responsible for the brand and the concept, including the drivetrain and design of the supply contracts whereas Magna will be in charge developing the model and production, as well as any of call-offs. Full press release after the jump.

[Source: MINI]
MINI Sports Activity Vehicle will be built by Magna Steyr

Partnership in Development and Production
Munich. The new MINI Sports Activity Vehicle (SAV) will be built by Magna Steyr Fahrzeugtechnik in Graz, Austria. The vehicle concept, devised by MINI Design and BMW Group engineers, has been entrusted to Magna Steyr Fahrzeugtechnik for series development and for later production.

The cooperation with Magna Steyr is an efficient way for BMW Group to ensure the planned profitable growth through new model launches set out in the company's strategic alignment.

By outsourcing production of the MINI SAV, BMW Group is able to increase flexibility within its own production network. This allows the lead plant for MINI production in Oxford to fully direct its midterm capacity of 260,000 units towards meeting demand for the three core models MINI, MINI Convertible and MINI Clubman. It is this outsourcing of MINI SAV production that makes the extension of the MINI family possible. Frank-Peter Arndt, Head of Production and Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, explains the advantages: "By using Magna Steyr for production, we are able to give our own Production Network some breathing space to respond fully to market needs. This solution will also allow us to bring the MINI SAV to the market as quickly as possible."

Magna Steyr is an experienced partner of BMW Group, having already produced the highly successful BMW X3. Speaking about the new contract, Siegfried Wolf, co-CEO of Magna International, sees this as a "huge recognition of the work that Magna Steyr has achieved so far through its partnership with BMW Group. Above all, I'm delighted for our employees, as this will allow us to set another milestone in our long-running and successful cooperation with BMW Group. As we have done before, we will work on this vehicle programme with our fullest commitment to ensure that we meet BMW Group's high expectations."

As with all partnerships, BMW Group itself will be steering all aspects concerning the brand and the concept of the MINI SAV project. Thus, the majority of the drive train development will be realised by BMW. In addition, BMW Group will design the supply contracts with the suppliers whilst Magna will be responsible for call-offs during series production. The MINI designers will ensure that the vehicle will be a true MINI.

Further details about the product and production will be communicated prior to the vehicle's market launch.

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