It's no secret that BMW, like many other automakers, is working on smaller three-cylinder engines for its future products in order to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. Some of those engines will go into the next generation of Mini products. Mini's goal is to provide a significant improvement in fuel economy without sacrificing performance.

The new Mini engines will incorporate much of the same technology that already exists today in the high performance John Cooper Works edition. The 208 horsepower JCW uses direct injection and a twin-scroll turbocharger to get extra power from the 1.6-liter four cylinder. The three cylinder will likely have a 1.2-liter displacement with 120 and 180 hp for the Cooper and Cooper S. The next-gen Cooper, which will probably arrive in about 2012, will likely approach the 50 mile per gallon highway mileage of the current Mini Cooper D available in Europe.

[Source: Motoring File]

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