Ask The Best And Brightest: MINI or BMW Zero-Series?

Cammy Corrigan
by Cammy Corrigan

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 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?

Cammy Corrigan
Cammy Corrigan

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  • Ttacgreg Ttacgreg on Nov 21, 2009

    Kendahl has it right. Let's see a real try at the 2002, as close as is possible. The 1 series is a bit of joke. To my mind the 1 sereies is to the 3 series as the Gremlin was to the Hornet. A 6 cylinder porky chopped 3 series is supposed to be an updated 2002? Hardly. With the exception of the retro British styling, the Mini is the better 2002.

  • Skaro Skaro on Nov 21, 2009

    Cammy- for some reason I find it interesting when you use plural tense for carmakers, "BMW are..." instead of "Isn't" It seems to make sense. But so far I've never read anyone else writing like that..

  • Baabthesaab Baabthesaab on Nov 21, 2009

    @skaro Clearly, she's British - or, perhaps, judging by her name, Irish. Folks in the UK regard a company as a group of people, rather than an individual entity, as we Americans do. Actually, it makes very good sense, and I have always liked it.

  • Hurls Hurls on Nov 21, 2009

    Agree with Ingvar.. Also I think that a FWD BMW would be crossing a huge Rubicon... but given all the 5000+lb. SAV Coupes they're selling today, it wouldn't surprise me. Gonna have to hang on to my E46 til it dies or the repairs kill me :) (Oh yeah, add me to the "hell yeah I'd buy a 123d 5door if they'd sell me one" chorus)