MINI Development Story updated (AROnline)

4 comments

  1. [B]Replacing the Mini was never going to be the work of a moment, and was generally regarded to be one of the toughest gigs in the industry.[/B]
    [IMG]http://i555.photobucket.com/albums/jj470/mab01uk/r50story_05.jpg[/IMG]
    'After years of deliberation, Rover started serious work in 1993, which was soon bolstered by the arrival of BMW the following year. What we ended up with sparked controversy with enthusiasts, but the Rover engineered project ended up being a huge hit with buyers.'

    Link to the updated MINI Development story on AROnline. Interesting insider development tales at Gaydon:
    [URL='http://www.aronline.co.uk/index.htm?r50storyf.htm'%5DAustin Rover Online[/URL]

  2. TBH i think most of the controversy wouldn't have happened if Rover had done it all themselves. Then added to that BMW's attitude in the early days of 2001 onwards didn't help!

    And then there was that god awful 'it's a mini adventure' ad campaign, it was like the marketing people couldn't be bothered! Compare it with the very clever VW ad's for example.

    Personally i quite liked the car from day one, although the high price, engine choice and comparatively poor fuel consumption greatly put me off.

  3. I think your right, though as the article mentions it was 'an innovative marketing campaign, pitched directly at the young and well-to-do urbanites who's parents took the original to their hearts in the Sixties. If anyone out there didn't know what a 'MINI adventure' was by the end of 2001, there was probably little hope for them…'

    The early USA ad campaign was more aligned to the Mini's history & heritage as they had few pre-conceived ideas of Mini ownership, not having them officially since the early '60's but BMW were far more cautious of exploiting the classic Mini connection in the UK with adverts, because so many people had much more recent memories of Mini rust, unreliability and noisy lack of refinement overiding that well known 'fun' factor!

    I think high price is to a great extent offset by low market depreciation and the cheap transferable TLC service packages which means most used MINI's have full service histories for at least 5-8 years.

    The original Chrysler Tritec engine is a little rough round the edges, often sounds like an 'A' series….but is comparatively bullet proof compared to the 'K' series so I guess BMW made the right decision, although the R65 Midlands gearbox championed by Rover has had its problems, eventually being superceded by BMW's original choice of Getrag.

    The poor fuel consumption and emissions of the supercharged R53 MCS was eventually sorted by the introduction of the current R56 MCS turbo but unfortunately without that addictive supercharger 'whine'.

  4. More interesting information in this pdf file on the MINI's development story:

    [B]New MINI – From concept design to new innovations[/B]
    [url]http://www.miniexperience.com.au/fileadmin/filemount/mag/01_issue/p33-39%20Modern%20History.pdf[/url]

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