Common Name: Cooper
Dimensions: 3630 mm x 1690 mm x 1410 mm
Wheelbase: 2470 mm
Weight: 1132 kg
Model Number: 43
Made In: China
Mini (styled as MINI) is a British automotive marque owned by BMW specialising in small cars.
Mini originated as a specific vehicle, a small car originally known as the Morris Mini-Minor launched by the British Motor Corporation in 1959, and developed into a brand encompassing a range of small cars, including the Clubman, Traveller and Moke. The original two-door Mini continued in production until 2000.
Development of a successor began in 1995 and the new generation car was launched in 2001. The Mini range has since expanded from the core two-door Hardtop/Hatch to include the Clubman (estate), Convertible and Countryman (crossover).
The Mini Hatch (US: Hardtop) was designed by Frank Stephenson, and drew inspiration from the original Mini. The name of the new car’s brand, MINI, was all-capitalised to distinguish it from its predecessor. Development of the car was conducted between 1995 and 2001 by Rover Group in Gaydon, United Kingdom and BMW AG in Munich, Germany. During this development phase, there was continual contention between the two design groups, especially concerning the positioning of the car; Rover wanted a straight economy car, whilst BMW supported a small, sporting car. Ultimately, BMW prevailed, and in 1999, they assumed control over the entire project following the departure of BMW’s CEO, Bernd Pischetsrieder. When BMW divested itself of Rover in 2000, BMW elected to retain the Mini project, and to move the planned production site of the car from Rover’s Longbridge plant, to BMW’s Oxford plant in Cowley, Oxford, United Kingdom. The team of designers working on the 2001 Mini had finished the full-sized clay mock-up of the Mini in plenty of time for a presentation to the board of directors. However, the chief designer, Frank Stephenson, realised that the model did not have an exhaust pipe. His short-term solution was to pick up an empty beer can, punch a hole in it, strip off the paint and push it into the clay at the back of the car, which took just a few minutes. The overall design for the mock-up was so good that the board members told him not to change a thing, resulting in the distinctive exhaust tip seen in production cars.