Car reviews - Mini - 5-door - range
Mini extends appeal by adding length and height – and two doors – to its best seller
30 Oct 2014
By TIM ROBSON
AS MINI works hard to lift itself from a hum-drum retail year on the back of the excellent new third-generation hatch, it knows it has a fight on its hands. That fight? The war of perception.
Perhaps because of the name, or perhaps because it launched with just a single model, Mini has always been up against it – in the media, at least – whenever it strays from the formula of three-door hatchback.
In 2014, the model line-up now stands at seven, with the inclusion of the all-new Mini Cooper 5-door range. The expression ‘all new’ is important it’s not simply a scaled-down Countryman divested of its all-wheel-drive capability.
“It’s not a redone Countryman,” says Daniel Silverman, Mini’s product planning manager. “It’s on a new platform that's been developed for the 5-door, and shares its architecture with the 2-Series Active Tourer".
That architecture is BMW’s UKL platform, designed to stretch, shrink and generally be flexed under all BMW products up to the size of a 3 Series.
Debuting to much acclaim under the R56 Mini three-door, the slightly longer and taller 5-door – similar in dimensions to Audi’s A1 – is expected to claim its smaller sibling’s mantel of number one seller in the Mini line-up.
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Model release date: 1 October 2014
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