The production lines at the MINI Oxford plant halted stopped operations for a few minutes yesterday as they said goodbye to the very last current generation MINI Hatch they made. Soon afterward the crew went back to work readying the lines for the production of the all-new MINI, in preparation for its spring 2014 launch.
The current-gen MINI was produced from 2006 to 2013, in which time over a million units have been sold; 1,041,412 units to be more precise. 14% of all cars built in the UK last year were MINIs, and MINIs accounted for 14% of all UK vehicle exports in 2012.
Besides being cute and distinctive in its own quirky way, the MINI has always been a very well-engineered car as well. The latest models may have not the genius packaging of the original car, but they were pretty damn good hatchbacks for their time. The current MINI introduced turbocharging, sophisticated suspension, and connectivity features to the brand.
This model also furthered MINI’s exciting and unique programme of customisation and personalisation, from bespoke roof designs to interior colour worlds, which has become synonymous with the MINI brand. Those qualities have been boosted in the new 2014 MINI. It is expected to be as a big success as its predecessor, even though its design has come under some heavy criticism.