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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
My passion is also my business, as I am with the Toronto based Hav-A-Kar Auto Group. I sell or lease any make of car, van or truck available in Canada. My interest in all things "car" has helped me with my many clients in Ontario over the past 20+ years. Please give me the opportunity to assist you.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Sept 26: The Mighty Mini

All hail the Mighty Mini. So, what's so mighty about a Mini? Ok, so hail BMW for taking a brand that was basically one car and making it an entire line up of vehicles. All seemingly based on the original Mini that, they reintroduced in 2001, after buying the "Mini" name. Initially, I wondered how far they could go with this basic little two door? Sure, throw in a few different engine options, but hey, this is a very distinct little body, so they can't go too far with it. Or could they? Well, you sure as heck know how wrong I was and probably a few other folks were as well. From the original has sprung........

- a station wagon version
- a convertible
- a two seater coupe with a very strange looking roof
- a convertible version of that strange coupe
- a four door suv......who ever would have thought that a sport ute could spring from the Mini fold and still look almost exactly like a Mini. No one is going to mistake this model for anything else, are they?

- a two door suv
- a variety of performance editions
(have I missed any?)

And now a four door version of the original Mini two door.......

Kind of like going full circle isn't it? One might have thought that this four door would have been one of the first of the variants. My initial skepticism has turned into wonder, as I watch what the folks at BMW have created with this "one car" brand. Without Mini's new parent, this brand would have been consigned to the history books back in 2000, when the original Mini's production finally came to an end, after a run beginning in 1959. Yes, the original was made for that long, with the last few being boutique models made for the Japanese market (go figure).

Interesting that in all that time, Mini never had near the variations that BMW has introduced in only 14 years. Sure, they had the little woody wagon (see above), a convertible, a pick-up and a panel van, but nothing like the present day's selection. They also had some different models, that were badge engineered cars like this one.........

Can you tell the difference? Nor can I. Oh, there were others as well that, relied on some design changes to differentiate them from the more common Austin and Morris versions. The upmarket Minis, so to speak.......

Funny, in that the Wolseley Hornet and the Riley Elf, while being redesigned Mini's, were in fact badge engineered versions of each other. As similar as the Morris and Austin versions were, so were these two upper class Mini's. I have a miniature of the little Riley and you have to admit that, it is a cutie. Can you picture it as an suv?

So, back to the very beginning.......

......a simple little concept that has been updated by a very astute manufacturer. The innocuous little British car, updated for the 21st century and made into one of the "go to" cars for the very cool people. Even my fertile imagination can't conceive of what they might do next.

The Mighty Mini, indeed.

Until next time.......

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