What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

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Thread: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

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    What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?
    By DAN NEIL

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...123217962.html

    The purity squads have their tiny knives out for the BMW Mini Countryman, and who can blame them? A 3,200-pound, four-door, all-wheel-drive Mini as big as a Nissan Juke and as potentially as spendy as a BMW 3-series, pushing $40,000? Why, it's ridiculous, it's absurd. You might as well suggest a Ferrari four-wheel-drive station wagon.

    Oh dear Lord. When did that happen?

    For many Mini brand apostles, insert dismay here. And it's not even a question of whether BMW and its wee Anglo-Saxon thralls in Gaydon, England, can engineer an entertaining small car with all-wheel drive. Clearly, it's within their compass to do so, and with the Countryman, they have. Here is as lively, vital and tossable a sedan as ever resembled an orthotic shoe.
    Nor should we doubt that the brand's troupe of design-school savants—you will know them by their complicated German eyeglasses—can style a cool and charismatic interior. Again, they have. The Countryman's spacious rear cabin is masterfully packaged, with two slide-and-recline bucket seats separated by a novel accessory rail that runs the length of the cabin. Owners can personalize the cabin by situating detachable accessories such cupholders, iPod docks, eyeglass cases and elbow rests where they like them along the rail. Brilliant. Only downside: Big dogs can't climb in the back seat. A bench-seat option is coming.

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    I'd say the answer is a Mini El Camino. That should shed a couple of hundred pounds of ugly fat, glass, and metal.

    Next question...
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    But no issue whatsoever with Granites, Veranos, that super-ugly little Caddy concept from early winter last year, ATSs, etc. Double-standard city..................
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Quote Originally Posted by OLDSCHOOLGMFAN View Post
    But no issue whatsoever with Granites, Veranos, that super-ugly little Caddy concept from early winter last year, ATSs, etc. Double-standard city..................
    Well I think it has more to do with that Mini is supposed to be about small cars only. Still, I have no problem with this car, but then again I'm no Mini enthusiast (I tend to prefer larger cars). Purists often lose sight of reality.

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    The original Mini was a lesson in packaging

    If you can find one go stand next to it and see how low and how dramatically short it is compared to other cars - yet you could still fit 4 in it - granted not comfortably in the back but it's whole reason for being was cheap transport the smallest size and best performance (ii mainly fuel ecconomy) you can get

    The cooper s was a blast and made far larger cars look stupid on a race track as well

    BMW made a small car that looked kind of like a Mini but never really came close to teh spirit of the car

    Small cars like the new Spark and smaller are more in keeping with the spirit of the Mini than the POS BMW sell

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Quote Originally Posted by VS Ute 5Litre View Post
    the POS BMW sell
    What?

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Quote Originally Posted by VS Ute 5Litre View Post
    The original Mini was a lesson in packaging

    If you can find one go stand next to it and see how low and how dramatically short it is compared to other cars - yet you could still fit 4 in it - granted not comfortably in the back but it's whole reason for being was cheap transport the smallest size and best performance (ii mainly fuel ecconomy) you can get

    The cooper s was a blast and made far larger cars look stupid on a race track as well

    BMW made a small car that looked kind of like a Mini but never really came close to teh spirit of the car

    Small cars like the new Spark and smaller are more in keeping with the spirit of the Mini than the POS BMW sell
    This.

    Spark Turbo = the essence of what Mini should be.

    Oh god... I just thought of it... Spark with the Cobalt SS TC engine...
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    BMW is hellbent on making an oxymoron out of MINI. Next thing you know they will come out with a Minivan called the MINI Van.

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Those stiff humorless Zjermans... They turned out to be better car salesmen than the Americans and Brits. Did you know that the Brits never made any money on the original Issigonis Mini? Anyway, the New Mini was just an excuse for BMW to make an even smaller Mini: the Rocketman.
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    The issue with the MINI and the original Mini in the later years near the death of MG Rover was the decision to move the whole theory of the mini from a car for the masses into a prestige brand. Many fellow enthusiasts believe that the Rocketman is a return to its roots, but this vehicle when in production will be apocalyptically expensive compared to the original. another one of my problems is the labelling of most of the MINI's as Cooper or Cooper S's back in the day the Cooper and Cooper S models less prevalent, for example there were only 400ish 1964 Coopers sold in Australia, the rest being predominantly Deluxe models and some Cooper S's. but that said I do quite like new MINI's.

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Quote Originally Posted by VS Ute 5Litre View Post
    The original Mini was a lesson in packaging

    If you can find one go stand next to it and see how low and how dramatically short it is compared to other cars - yet you could still fit 4 in it - granted not comfortably in the back but it's whole reason for being was cheap transport the smallest size and best performance (ii mainly fuel ecconomy) you can get

    The cooper s was a blast and made far larger cars look stupid on a race track as well

    BMW made a small car that looked kind of like a Mini but never really came close to teh spirit of the car

    Small cars like the new Spark and smaller are more in keeping with the spirit of the Mini than the POS BMW sell
    True enough and I can understand why you would say that.

    However the regulatory issues in the modern world we live in in practical terms precluded having anything like the original - for the USA.

    ( As I'm sure you remember that was a big problem for the original..... something the bigger sized, blown up Mini aka in the 'States as the Austin America was to address.... '73 side impact standards were shall we say 'problematic' and that's just the beginning of the list...... for both.)

    The first gen under BMW caught ( arguably ) enough of the spirit of the thing to work and work well .....after that it's something of a different story....

    Anyway, irregardless of all the rest, the 2011 Countryman has one of..... if not the best rear seat area in anything 'small' or 'smallish' in nature in terms of what is actually offered here.

    Quite impressive actually - works and feels good for all four seats ( front & rear) - in terms of effective sight lines and things like egress and ingress.

    Pricing is the main rub - when heavily equipped as long as you don't get hung up on where it comes from in terms of size and weight and the history of the marque et al.

    I don't mind saying I wish one of our three were making this instead of 'them'. It's right at the top of the list for that although I'm sure few would agree with that idea.

    A diesel with maybe a bit of this and that would finish it off nicely.
    Last edited by AMERICA 123; 03-07-2011 at 09:18 AM.
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    The purity squads have their tiny knives out for the BMW Mini Countryman, and who can blame them? A 3,200-pound, four-door, all-wheel-drive Mini as big as a Nissan Juke and as potentially as spendy as a BMW 3-series, pushing $40,000? Why, it's ridiculous, it's absurd. You might as well suggest a Ferrari four-wheel-drive station wagon.
    This probably won't make the writer too happy:
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Quote Originally Posted by AMERICA 123 View Post
    Anyway, irregardless of all the rest, the 2011 Countryman has one of..... if not the best rear seat area in anything 'small' or 'smallish' in nature in terms of what is actually offered here.
    The packaging is well done: the thing is Fiat Punto sized (slightly bigger but not by much) yet has a trunk the size of a VW Golf's.
    Last edited by zl-1; 03-07-2011 at 11:12 AM.

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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Point taken.... and I was thinking there may even be a few more like that... 'over there' or 'elsewhere'.

    Thing is, what happens when they get over here - assuming they even do ???
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    Re: What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?

    Quote Originally Posted by calgaryhhr View Post
    This probably won't make the writer too happy:
    Did you read his very next sentence? It was a joke.

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