2011 MINI Countryman

2011 MINI Countryman

MINI’s ambitious plans to launch a slew of new models shows no signs of slowing. Not only are there new coupe and roadster models planned for the Cooper platform, but a new-generation ‘Moke’ off-roader previewed by the recent Beachcomber concept is also reportedly in the works. Now there are reports coming out claiming that a new sub-Cooper model as well as a three-door version of the Countryman crossover are also planned.

The new sub-Cooper model is expected to revive the Minor name and a concept version of the car could even appear at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. It will likely be spun-off the platform BMW is developing for its upcoming Megacity Vehicle, which means a front-engine, front-wheel drive configuration and lightweight carbon-fiber construction.

Inside, there will likely be space for only two, although a three-seat layout like that of the Toyota iQ is also possible.

Production for the new MINI Minor is far from confirmed as officials will be gauging reaction to the concept at next year’s Geneva event before any final decision is made. One new model that is very likely to see the light of day, however, is a new three-door version of the 2011 MINI Countryman crossover.

Tipped to be called the MINI Canyon, this new model will feature coupe-like proportions combined with the same raised platform found in the Countryman. This will give it a very aggressive stance, making it an ideal competitor for cars like the upcoming Range Rover Evoque and even BMW’s own X1.

It is designed to slot above the Countryman in positioning and will feature the top-of-the-line 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with final output around the 200 horsepower mark. A high-performance 2.0-liter turbodiesel will almost certainly be launched and all-wheel drive should come as standard.

[AutoWeek, AutoExpress]