Thursday 25 May 2017

It’s a Mini revolution

BMW has revealed a new entry-level Mini which promises to be the most fuelefficient petrol-engined car in the current range.

The Mini One Minimalism line gets a new four-cylinder 1.6-litre engine along with some familiar BMW technology - Brake Energy Regeneration, Auto Start Stop and a gearshift indicator - to reduce the car's CO2 emissions to 119g/km.

The Minimalism line will go on sale in March this year. The new petrol engine replaces the entry-level 1.4-litre motor currently found in the Mini One. As such, two versions of the 1.6-litre will be available from launch; one producing 74bhp, the other 97bhp.

BMW claim both are capable of more than 50mpg. Unsurprisingly, the Mini One Minimalism also gets a few visual tweaks to differentiate it from the rest of the range. These include new aerodynamically optimised wheels, unique 'Pepper White' design elements on the grille and wing mirrors, and a model-specific logo.

While these features might be unique to the Minimalism line, the engine is not. The car's unveiling coincided with BMW's announcement that the entire Mini line-up will benefit from a new range of revised petrol engines. All versions of the 1.6-litre powerplant now benefit from BMW's variable valve technology, as well as various modifications designed to reduce engine friction and improve heat management.

Predictably, the turbocharged motor found in all versions of the Cooper S enjoys the biggest gains in power - an overboost feature means the engine is capable of producing huge pulling power for short spells, which should make overtaking in the hottest Mini even easier - but the Valvetronic system means every new Mini benefits from marginally enhanced performance.

Economy and emissions are also slightly improved. Outside of the Minimalism range, the naturallyaspirated 1.6-litre engine emits 127g/km of CO2 across the range, while the Cooper S version improves from 149g/km to 136g/km.

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