The Mini marque was introduced in 1969 and was acquired by BMW in 2000. The focus group of Mini targets small car segment. While the name “Mini” was used in car model names since 1959, the marque only became official a decade later when the Austin Mini and Morris mini model names were merged.
At the origins, Mini represents a line of iconic British small vehicles produced under ownership of BMC (British Motor Corporation). Some of the model names feature the Morris Mini-Minor and the Austin Seven as well as the Countryman and Clubman. There was also a performance trim for some of the models, nicknamed Cooper, as part of the partnership with John Cooper, legendary racing driver and engineer.
The two-door car that originally gained the Mini named was produced by BMC for 4 decades, between 1959 and 2000. The model is considered a British icon of the 60s, featuring impressive interior space thanks to its FWD system that allowed more legroom on the floor. The original Mini car has been often compared to its German counterpart, the VW Beetle.
As BMW acquired the Rover brand (and consequently, Mini) in 1994, the opportunity rose for a compact car to be developed alongside the BMW 1-series. The last ever model of the original Mini was built in October 2000 and was exposed side-by-side with the 1st ever model in the Heritage Motor Centre in Gaydon.
Since 2001, BMW imposed a number on trims to the Mini line-up. The trims ranged between the entry-level One, the Cooper, Cooper S and the high-end John Cooper Works. The model was available with either the 1.4-liter or the 1.6-liter inline-4 engine and rear-wheel drive. Between 2005 and 2008, a convertible model was introduced into the lineup, available in all but the JCW trim. A particular element to be considered was the automatic roof, which is highly unusual for the price range.
A larger model of the Mini brand is the Clubman, introduced in 2008 and available in the Cooper, Cooper S and Cooper D variations.
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