Open-air, petrol-powered motoring will continue at Mini for a few years yet.
The next-generation Mini Convertible has been spied testing ahead of a rumoured reveal in 2024.
This will almost certainly be the last petrol-powered Mini convertible. The brand plans for 50 per cent of its sales to be made up of all-electric vehicles by 2027, ahead of a switch to an EV-only lineup by 2030.
As we’ve come to expect from Mini, the design is more evolutionary than revolutionary.
This prototype wears red brake calipers, sporty side skirts and a centre-exit single exhaust, suggesting it’s a hot S or John Cooper Works (JCW) model.
It’s unclear what will be under the bonnet of the new Convertible, though Mini will reportedly no longer offer manual transmissions.
Currently, the Mini Hatch and Convertible powertrain lineup consists of a selection of turbocharged three- and four-cylinder engines. Flagship JCW models pack a turbocharged 2.0-litre four with 170kW of power and 320Nm of torque.
We’re yet to see the interior of the petrol Mini, but the recently revealed electric Mini Cooper hatch has a strikingly minimalist layout with a round OLED centre display and fabric-covered dashboard.
The spy shots reveal this prototype will most likely feature a similar interior design language. Ever since BMW established Mini as a standalone brand, its vehicles have always had a large, round centre dial or display of some kind.
A large, circular screen is visible and takes centre stage on the dashboard of the prototype.
Internal combustion-powered hatchback and convertible Minis are expected to use a modified version of the brand’s UKL1 platform.
Petrol-powered hatch and convertible models will continue to be built in the UK, even as Mini begins production of electric Cooper hatch models in China. It’s unclear if the Cooper EV, based on a new platform called Spotlight EV, will spawn a convertible version.
Mini recently revealed an electric Convertible, but this is a limited-edition model for Europe based on the outgoing generation.