Mini sold 301,526 cars in 2012; BMW sold 1.54 million of its own models. According to a piece in Autocar, analysts say the coming UKL1 platform that will form the skeleton of the third-generation Mini Cooper and coming front-wheel drive BMW 1 Series could be responsible for "more than 900,000 cars per year" all by itself.
If you thought Mini had strayed far from its raison d'être with the Countryman crossover, consider the following: while the original Mini was diminutive in size, it was all about maximizing interior volume against a compact exterior shape – a ratio, if you will, of cabin size to overall dimensions. The rumored upcoming Mini minivan, then, might seem like another step too far for the brand, but could very much fit the bill in its size-bending capacity.
It's no secret that the Mini name doesn't exactly mean what it used to. While just about every car currently available has grown in size over the years, there's just no getting around the fact that the new Mini is a full size larger than the original. And each new model that comes from the German owned and British born brand is a wee bit larger.
Next up to announce a miniature MPV is Volkswagen, said to be eying its Polo for conversion to a (little) people hauler. In Europe such a car would go against competition like the Opel Meriva and Fiat Qubo. A VW board member suggested that such a car would be about adding to the company's small car variety, and it wants to have the right mix of offerings when the recovery comes.
Over in Europe, when drivers hear the words "Ford Fusion" they get a very different image from the four-door mid-sized sedan sold in North America. The Euro Fusion is a tall wagon, mini-mpv based on the previous generation Fiesta small car. Now that the new Fiesta is rolling off the assembly lines, the Fusion is set to be replaced as well. The new model will follow the nomenclature of Ford's other MPVs with the name B-Max. The B-Max is expected to debut in 2010 with styling that takes on the bes