Car news

01 October 2013

First official details on new Mini

1.5-litre three-pot and ‘emphatically sporty’ adaptive damping: it’s the new Mini

Vijay Pattni
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A couple of firsts for the upcoming new generation Mini: a three-cylinder 1.5-litre petrol turbo and adaptive damping. Welcome to the future of premium superminis.

We'll see the brand new new Mini in a couple of months time, but before that bombastic day arrives, Mini has dribbled out a few teasers hinting at the new model's technology - much like parent company BMW did a week ago with the upcoming M3 and M4 powerhouses.

So, first up, the engines. On launch, the new Mini will be offered with a 1.5-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine - the first three-pot to grace a new new Mini - producing 136bhp and 220Nm of torque available from 1,250rpm, and a turbo'd 2-litre four-pot petrol with 192bhp and 280Nm. Both engines feature an overboost function, so the 1.5-litre gets nearly 230 torques for a brief moment, while the 2-litre gets 300 torques. That's many.

Both these petrol engines feature direct injection and an exhaust-manifold-integrated turbo with a short path said to enable a ‘prompt and effective' response. So hopefully not a laggy one.

There's only one confirmed diesel engine so far: a 1.5-litre three-pot producing 116bhp and 270 torques, with a common-rail direct injection system featuring a max pressure of 2,000 bar. The whole setup is said to consume seven per cent less fuel than before.

You'll get start/stop, the option of manual and auto gearboxes, and if you spec the latter with the satnav, your gear selection will be allied to your route guidance, with the right gear in place ‘before reaching junctions or cornering'. It's like READING YOUR MIND. Or the same technology as fitted to the emphatically upmarket Rolls-Royce Wraith.

Chassis-wise, it's still a single-link strut axle up front and a multi-link rear setup, while there's a slightly wider track, better underfloor aero, lighter forged alloys, increased component rigidity and - as mentioned before - adaptive damping for the first time. You can select from either a sportier or comfort-based setup.

We'll bring you more as soon as we get it, but the bottom line from Mini is clear: "Mini developers will continue to emphasise sporty, agile handling". And annoyingly, they're probably right - the current one is one of the best handling cars around, so this one promises to be even better...

Tags: mini

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