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  #76  
Old 06-26-2015, 05:27 PM
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That's fine, I'll just sit alone in my little corner of the room being happy that MINI is moving towards being more BMW like

I'm still hoping they'll release the Superleggera under the Triumph name and compete with the Miata.
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  #77  
Old 06-26-2015, 06:13 PM
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That's fine, I'll just sit alone in my little corner of the room being happy that MINI is moving towards being more BMW like
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If you want a BMW, get a 235...they're incredible.

Mini was never a luxury brand and never should be a luxury brand. It's a cute little car...it should be a lightweight, minimal, sport hatch.
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  #78  
Old 06-26-2015, 07:35 PM
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See I always thought they billed it as a "premium hatchback," which it never really felt like until now.

We're actually looking at BMW's for the next car. If they were still in the E series I probably wouldn't have, but I'm a big fan of the F series (which feels a lot like the F56).
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  #79  
Old 06-26-2015, 08:14 PM
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See I always thought they billed it as a "premium hatchback," which it never really felt like until now.
When I say Mini, I mean the all inclusive brand of Mini since back in the day. When they were originally sold, they were a budget utilitarian car. You owned a classic...you know they were nothing more than a metal box with some seats inside.


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We're actually looking at BMW's for the next car. If they were still in the E series I probably wouldn't have, but I'm a big fan of the F series (which feels a lot like the F56).
Yes, I think BMWs lineup is the strongest it has been since the days of the E21/28/30 as far as design is concerned. Nearly every single model looks incredible (there are some ugly stragglers still)...even the SUVs.
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  #80  
Old 06-26-2015, 09:14 PM
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See I haven't considered them the same, at all. When the R53 came out it was fun and new and pretty small by that time's standards, but now we have smart cars and IQ's and Fiat 500s that are all smaller than the R53 was. The new brand is quirky and fun like the old, but that's about as far as it goes for me :shrug:

I don't know, I just like the direction they're going. I'd love for them to release something light and nimble for the enthusiast too, but that car market seems to be dying as a whole. I would have thought for sure the FRS/BRZ would have been a huge hit, it ticks all the right boxes, but even it is dying.
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  #81  
Old 06-26-2015, 09:42 PM
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The new brand is quirky and fun like the old, but that's about as far as it goes for me :shrug:
Right, and that's the problem at hand and that's the core sentiment of my rant.

The original Mini brand was amazing. They sold millions of cars and have been constantly celebrated as one of the most innovative and successful brands of the time.

The current MINI brand is quickly becoming a brand that does nothing but churn out mediocre hatches that fit the "Quirky soccer mom SUV/Car" category.


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I don't know, I just like the direction they're going. I'd love for them to release something light and nimble for the enthusiast too, but that car market seems to be dying as a whole. I would have thought for sure the FRS/BRZ would have been a huge hit, it ticks all the right boxes, but even it is dying.
I don't know how true that is...the Focus ST is killing it. I agree that the FRS thing is confusing and I'm not sure what's to blame there.

With that said, I'm not even advocating a sports car direction. As I've said before, I would go more towards the Scion IQ direction. Cheapen the car, simplify it, don't try to be something that it's not. A MINI will never be a BMW (and BMW will make sure of that, I assure you)...so why not go back to its roots and be a humble, simple, small vehicle for putting around?

In my ideal world, MINI would produce a 2-door MINI the size of the IQ/Fiat 500. It would be powered by a 3 cylinder and put out like 110hp...maybe 150hp if they're feeling sassy. It wouldn't worry about crazy gadget options or a complex interior. It would have a simple, lightweight interior like the i3. On the outside, it wouldn't look too quirky like the IQ or i3...it would just look like a scaled-down R56. If they had a hard time engineering seats for the rear, a cargo "boot" would be welcomed. Assuming they are willing to cut some corners on quality...they could sell this car easily for the $12k-18k range. To me, that's what a Mini should be. I understand that it's a risky move and car companies don't take risks anymore...but I think it would sell.
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  #82  
Old 06-29-2015, 05:19 PM
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Maybe, but I think this push to be more practical is because the R series MINIs never sold well enough. I guess the F54 will tell us for sure, but I bet that extra size will sell a lot of people on it. If they can iron out the reliability stigma / issues I suspect it could be a great seller.

In my eyes MINI's should be cheaper, quirkier BMWs. BMWs always try to toe the line between luxury and performance, but they've been firmly in the luxury side of things for a while now outside of their M line. MINIs should feel a lot like BMWs only with less gadgetry and more raw performance. Which to me is pretty close to where they are right now. There's less baby-sitting gadgets and more suspension options. They're lighter, smaller, and more nimble. There are still manual transmission options. There are OEM performance upgrades. Etc etc. They're not enthusiast only cars anymore, but I don't really care about that. I'd rather the brand survive as slightly larger and more luxurious than die the same death that the IQ and FRS are experiencing.
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  #83  
Old 06-30-2015, 02:16 PM
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MINI should've just kept producing & improving the gen1s.....dead end design IMO.
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  #84  
Old 06-30-2015, 02:31 PM
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I keep hoping they'll update the Fiat 500. If that thing wasn't so incredibly outdated by today's standards I would have looked at it. Hard plastics everywhere, middling MPG, blegh. I have a feeling the R53 would have had the same issues if they kept trying to slightly update it. Plus all the new pedestrian laws in the UK would've made it close to impossible.
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  #85  
Old 06-30-2015, 03:20 PM
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The fiat is supposed to have hard plastics and such...it's an entry level car just like the MINI should be. The original Mini had bare metal all over and a dash made of glorified cardboard
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  #86  
Old 06-30-2015, 03:45 PM
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I get that, I just don't like it.
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  #87  
Old 07-01-2015, 06:37 AM
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The fiat is supposed to have hard plastics and such...it's an entry level car just like the MINI should be. The original Mini had bare metal all over and a dash made of glorified cardboard
Listening to you complain about MINI not making you a really cheap sub-Cooper (which is blatantly obvious that is not the direction they are going) is like whining that Porsche won't make a 'super' entry level coupe/roadster.

There's no financially feasible way for MINI to make you a cheap car without diluting the entire brand, and making the company just like every other bland automaker. Sacrificing a lot of the strides they have made in the past years as a premium hot hatch manufacterer (pleased show me another automaker that has a cornered a market the way MINI has) all just to make a car that is a whole $6k cheaper than a Cooper and essentially a marginally stylized econobox? It would end up being very similar to the Fiat because it's financially strenuous to do anything better with a car that is being sold for such little money.
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  #88  
Old 07-01-2015, 11:13 AM
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Well, the MINI One sells for about US$2,300 cheaper than the Cooper in Europe, so that's around 3rd of the 6K target you mention.... I would bet they could de-content it and get quite a bit closer with a few things.... Not sure if the One comes standard with steelies... But I would bet the accountants would know how to get it there... But that would certainly go against the idea of selling an up-market MINI...
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  #89  
Old 07-01-2015, 02:07 PM
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Listening to you complain about MINI not making you a really cheap sub-Cooper (which is blatantly obvious that is not the direction they are going) is like whining that Porsche won't make a 'super' entry level coupe/roadster.

There's no financially feasible way for MINI to make you a cheap car without diluting the entire brand, and making the company just like every other bland automaker. Sacrificing a lot of the strides they have made in the past years as a premium hot hatch manufacterer (pleased show me another automaker that has a cornered a market the way MINI has) all just to make a car that is a whole $6k cheaper than a Cooper and essentially a marginally stylized econobox? It would end up being very similar to the Fiat because it's financially strenuous to do anything better with a car that is being sold for such little money.
That's not really true on multiple levels. Just because MINI is structuring themselves as a premium brand doesn't mean they aren't able to offer a car for less money with fewer standard features. And actually, Porsche is a great comparison, because they did exactly what you're describing when they introduced the Boxster and Cayman. They knew that they had to go both down-market as well as up-market to expand their brand, and it worked.

You're right that there aren't many manufacturers out there who have taken a niche car and succeeded, but that doesn't mean that everything MINI is doing by going after the premium brand segment is right. I support what they're doing with the Clubman, and I also like a lot of the higher quality materials and whatnot that makes the new MINI such a nice car to drive. I still wish they would make what Rally is talking about to go along with the current offerings.

There is no reason at all that MINI couldn't make a simpler, cheaper car and be successful. Actually, offering a nicer-than-most cheaper car, even at a slim margin, would make excellent business sense. Those that still want the fancy car can get the fancy car, and those that want the cheaper car have to forgo the features of the next level up models... but it gives them something to shoot for, and as a result it expands the brand. It's the same model that BMW, Mercedes, and Lexus (among others) have used for years. Offer a much more affordable model to bring them in; then once they're part of the brand they'll aspire for the nicer version, and it's likely their next purchase. The next car may be the next step up, and so on.

If MINI were to offer a car comparable in size to the R50 with the 3-cylinder engine (maybe NA and Turbo versions) that had a lot less equipment they could bring the base price down under $17k and sell a shit load of cars. Who could ask for a better starter car? Cheap, fuel efficient, safe, room to carry people and things, and fun to drive.
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Last edited by Drew; 07-01-2015 at 02:18 PM..
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  #90  
Old 07-01-2015, 04:10 PM
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That's why I love my daily, the gen3 M3. Mazda3, I meant
Way too much car for its price.
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