(from Mini Press
Release) More space for style: The MINI Clubvan Concept.
Compact lifestyle van for business and leisure – First concept of
its kind in the premium segment – World premiere at the Geneva
International Motor Show 2012.
Munich/Geneva. Stand-out-from-the-crowd style can also be amazingly
practical – and practicality surprisingly attractive. The MINI
Clubvan Concept brings apparently conflicting profiles together into
a single package, paving the way for an innovative vehicle concept
without parallel in the premium small car segment. The MINI
Clubman-based concept car, scheduled for its world premiere at the
Geneva International Motor Show 2012, combines the driving fun for
which MINI is renowned with increased load-carrying capability. The
MINI experience will therefore find its way into new areas of life,
the brand’s distinctive character gaining new popularity among
target groups not previously on the MINI radar.
The closed-off load area behind the front seats and the opaque rear
side windows of the new concept set it apart most strikingly from
the MINI Clubman. The MINI Clubvan Concept uses its broader
skill-set to open up new usage possibilities – both business and
leisure. Where a business’s customers, product range and operating
environment demand a particular style for its vehicles, a premium
model can make the perfect delivery solution. For example, a car in
the mould of the MINI Clubvan Concept would fit excellently into the
fleet of a fashion designer, art gallery owner or event caterer. And
its abilities as an all-rounder also tick the right boxes for a
photographer with a stack of camera, tripod and lighting equipment
to ferry around during the week – and bulky sports and leisure gear
to pile on board at the weekend.
The MINI Clubvan Concept pulls off the trick of blending enhanced
practicality and a well-judged lifestyle focus with natural ease.
This ability is based on the impressive adaptability that goes to
the heart of the MINI brand’s heritage. Calls for maximising the
load capacity of the classic Mini began as early as 1960, just a
year after the car’s birth. And they were soon heeded. With its
10-centimetre-longer wheelbase, separate load compartment and split
rear doors, the Morris Mini Van was perfectly equipped for
commercial use. It also provided the basis for the fully glazed,
four-seat Morris Mini Traveller, one of the precursors of today’s
successful MINI Clubman. And so, more than 50 years on, the MINI
Clubvan Concept sees history repeating itself – albeit in a slightly
Two seats, five doors, endless
Limiting the car to two
seats creates the capacity its owners will need on a day-to-day
basis, as well as opening up a whole new world of customisation
potential. The load compartment of the MINI Clubvan Concept embodies
the car’s fresh and rigorous interpretation of the principle used in
the classic Mini – of providing the maximum amount of interior space
on the smallest possible footprint. The load area reaches from the
split rear doors right up to the partition grille behind the two
seats. The totally level floor makes full use of the interior’s
depth, and that allows the concept car’s load capacity to exceed the
maximum achieved by the MINI Clubman.
Six attachment loops recessed into the load compartment floor use
elasticated straps to hold items of varying lengths, heights and
widths in place – without the risk of them sliding around. Added to
which, the partition grille, which is fixed securely to the car
body, ensures that items stowed in the load compartment cannot find
their way into the front seats, even under extremely heavy braking.
The lower section of the partition is made from solid aluminium,
while the upper section consists of a silver-coloured stainless
steel honeycomb grating. The side walls and floor of the load
compartment are trimmed in high-quality anthracite-coloured cloth.
The anthracite roof liner, meanwhile, extends along the full length
of the interior. This uniform colour scheme emphasises the
pure-bred, practicality-oriented character of the MINI Clubvan
Like the MINI Clubman, the MINI Clubvan Concept is a five-door car
with a twist. Two front doors for the driver and front passenger,
two side-hinged doors at the rear and the rear-hinged Clubdoor on
the right-hand side create comfortable access to the interior. The
Clubdoor gives owners the option of loading or unloading smaller
items from the side of the car as well as the rear.
The generous levels of space on board the concept car can be
exploited in a variety of ways. Commercial users will be
particularly pleased to discover the scope for configuring the load
compartment to personal requirements. For example, tools and goods
can be stored neatly and securely in made-to-measure drawers or
shelving units. 12-volt plug sockets in the rear area of the load
compartment provide additional practicality.
Exterior design: shields from
prying eyes, cuts a distinctive figure.
and the brand’s time-honoured style lend the MINI Clubvan Concept
its unmistakable character. Sharing the exterior dimensions of the
MINI Clubman and boasting cleverly increased storage capacity, the
concept car is the first premium model in the small car-based van
segment. The exterior appearance of the MINI Clubvan Concept marks
it out immediately as a MINI – and therefore as a premium product.
The function-led design modifications have no impact on the car’s
proportions and hallmark MINI design language, but they do give
customers the opportunity to combine the demands of commercial use
with an appreciation of individual style.
The MINI Clubvan Concept comes with British Racing Green exterior
paintwork, which extends to the roof, C-pillars and exterior mirror
caps. As is usual for vehicles charged with transportation tasks,
the rear side windows of the MINI Clubvan Concept are opaque.
Polycarbonate sections – their outer surfaces painted in the car’s
body colour – and heavily tinted glass for the rear doors make it
difficult to see into the load compartment.
The unbroken paintwork along the car’s flanks offers extensive scope
for individualisation, which the MINI Clubvan Concept highlights to
eye-catching effect. The sealed side windows bear the logo of a sign
design company based in the MINI’s native Great Britain. The
hand-applied graphics lend the vehicle a personal look. Indeed, the
ultra-versatile MINI carries both its cargo and the company’s
promotional message with a uniquely stylish verve. The MINI Clubvan
Concept presented in Geneva lends this form of customisation a
piquant authenticity – on two fronts. The British company that has
literally left its stamp on the MINI Clubvan Concept creates similar
vehicle graphics for its customers. And the MINI Clubvan Concept
showcases how these might look when applied to a MINI van.