Great! The biggest competitor for the MINI comes from....BMW ITSELF:



Interior:


Basically, what you have here is a rear-drive MINI, folks: A premium small car (priced in the low $20k's).

BMW swears it's not going to bring the car here, because it feels it will "dilute the brand image". Okaaaaay....a MINI shares about 50% of its mechanical & electrical parts with a 3-series Beamer (the 5-link rear suspension is basically identical, minus the driveline). Has that 'diluted the brand'. What I read here is: "We don't want to deal with the plebian VW crowd."

Look, a BMW dealership is in the business of selling cars at $35k and above; they may advertise the 3-series at around $30k, but rest assured, you'll never find such an animal on their lot. And, honestly, places like The BMW Store in Cincinnati are chock-full of BMWs already, so where are they going to put this new line (which would have high volume and need high inventories)

On the bright side, rear-wheel drive (RWD) is making a comeback in America. GM is coming out with the new Kappa platform for the Pontiac Solstice and derivatives, all on a new RWD, all-aluminum platform. Can't wait to rock one of these new generation of RWD small sedans around an autocross course.

Kappa-platform concepts:




The Nomad, particularly, is like a RWD MINI.

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