MINI to expand electrification

By JAY WONG | 28 October 2020

MUNICH: MINI has announced that it is looking to realignment its model range with a clear focus on drivetrain technologies, vehicle segments and future services.

At the centre of this realignment is the expansion of electromobility, enhanced commitment in the crossover and premium compact segments and strengthening of its market position in China.

At present, emission-free mobility has been firmly established in the model range and in the MINI community.

With the MINI Countryman Plug-in Hybrid alone, vehicles with electrified drive accounted for 5% of the brand’s total sales in 2019.

Following the launch of the MINI Electric, this rate has doubled to 10% of all new registrations for the brand.

In the future, the German-owned British car brand will enable customers all over the world to have emission-free driving with a completely electrified model family.

At the same time, MINI will still offer highly efficient petrol and diesel engines, which continue to be an ideal solution for target groups and regions whose mobility needs are not yet met by all-electric vehicles.

The future core portfolio of all-electric vehicles will include the MINI 3-Door Hatch, a new crossover model in the small-car segment and a compact crossover model.

The brand’s small-car models and a crossover model in the compact segment will be available to choose from with conventional internal combustion engines.

To further benefit from the worldwide growth in the crossover market, the company is focusing on an expansion of the product range in this vehicle segment which is specifically geared towards customer requirements.

The successful MINI Countryman will be joined by another crossover model for the small-car segment, which will be supplied exclusively with an all-electric drive.

In addition, the next generation of MINI Countryman will be available with both combustion engines and an electrified drivetrain.

Furthermore, it will look to provide greater space and practicality for their vehicles with the smallest footprint compared to its competitors.

As for the Chinese market, around 10% of the brand's products are delivered to customers in China.

Because of this, the company is now looking to produce its vehicles locally to help increase its sales.

Based on a new vehicle architecture for pure e-mobility, battery-electric vehicles will be produced in China from 2023 in cooperation with the local manufacturer Great Wall Motor.

This venture will enable the MINI to meet the rising demand for emission-free driving both in China and in the other global markets.

Cooperation with the Chinese partner will be based on a clearly defined principle - Production follows the market.

With locally-manufactured vehicles, MINI will serve the growing Chinese automotive market while maintaining stable production at other locations.