After the 1 series, BMW pretty much committed themselves to the smallest car, because it was the smallest number, they were going to make under the BMW marque. Or did they? You see, there is actually another number lower than 1 and BMW plan to release a series of cars based on that number. Now we’ve known this for some time, but Car-Chat.info put forward a very real scenario. Since the 0 series will be smaller than the 1 series, that means it will go head to head with BMW’s other marque, the Mini. Now, one could be optimistic and say that 2 cars under different brands could grab a bigger slice of the market or, one could be realistic and say that cannibalisation is afoot. BMW aren’t stupid, which brings forward the very real possibility that BMW could phase out the Mini brand. At top production rates, Mini produce 240000 vehicles a year. That’s niche levels. And who wouldn’t want a BMW badge instead of a Mini? Yes, there may be a few “Italian Job” fans upset and a couple of “Germans kill iconic brand” headlines in the UK gutter press, but when you think about it, it kind of makes sense. At least as long as a front-wheel drive BMW doesn’t strike you as too blasphemous (and BMW doesn’t seem to have a problem crossing that Rubicon). So now TTAC posits a question to the B&B: Does the world really need Mini? Are we hanging onto a brand which doesn’t fit viably in the today’s market? Or is an FWD BMW the real mistake?
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