MINI's existing Clubman model is an acquired taste, but the Clubman concept launched at Geneva may find a few more fans.

It loses the abrupt wagon layout and unusual suicide-style side door, and in its place you get a proper four-door vehicle with better rear passenger space and a larger load area.

In reality you'll find six doors, since the Clubman's trademark twin rear tailgate doors still round out the car, hinged to each side like classic Mini wagons of old.

It's an interesting layout and sure to put a few off, but the Clubman works surprisingly well in the metal. Better, in fact, than the recently-launched third-generation MINI Cooper, which largely looks like a restyled version of the old car.

The Clubman has a character all of its own, looking both interesting and suitably upmarket, up close.

If it's possible for a friendly-faced, rounded-off design to look sleek, the Clubman does so--albeit in comparison to the truncated hatchback. The extra length, ten inches more than the outgoing Clubman, really helps here.

MORE: MINI Clubman Concept: Four-Door MINI To Make Geneva Debut

The Berry Red paintwork glints under the show lighting and is sure to look great in the sun too, should MINI choose to offer a production Clubman in this color scheme.

At the back the horizontal rear lights also look distinctive, and not quite as odd as they did in the early press shots. It should help a road-going Clubman to stand out from the hatchback once it hits the streets.

As we noted in our preview, much of the interior will change when a production model is launched, but the concept's cabin strikes the right balance of quality and unique design that MINIs are known for.

Engine-wise, a production Clubman is likely to share power units with the regular MINI. That means a choice of three and four-cylinder turbocharged engines, and in Europe at least, diesel units too. All will deliver better economy and lower emissions than that of current MINIs.

You can head to our Geneva Motor Show hub page to check out more live galleries and information from the Swiss show.


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