Thursday June 23rd, 2011 17:11 MINI officially reveal the two-seater Coupé


MINI has announced details of its latest model, the highly-anticipated two-seater Coupé. Set for release in October, MINI hope that the new Coupé will provide a stern challenge to the Audi TT. Described by MINI as having “unrivalled handling agility,” the Coupé is the first “three-box” two-seater MINI. Sitting 52 millimetres lower than the standard MINI, and with a unique “helmet roof” design, the Coupé will certainly stick out from its rivals in the field.

There are four variants in the Coupé range, starting with the base model MINI Cooper Coupé and ending with the flagship John Cooper Works Coupé (JCW).

The Cooper, with its 120bhp, 1.6-litre engine, goes from 0-62mph in 9.0 seconds and has a pretty nifty top speed of 127mph. The JCW Coupé has a top speed of 149mph and roars from 0-62mph in an impressive 6.4 seconds. Its four-cylinder, 1.6-litre petrol engine boasts a twin-scroll turbocharger and direct injection, and has a maximum output of 211bhp at 6,000rpm.

In between these two models come the MINI Cooper S Coupé and the MINI Cooper SD Coupé. The SD Coupé has a four-cylinder, 2-litre turbo-diesel engine with an aluminium crankcase.

The “three-box” shape enables the MINI to have room for a 280-litre load bay. This is 120 litres more than the standard MINI. The impressive storage space doesn’t end there, however, as there are extra storage bins behind the seats in addition to a hatch for any long objects. Loading objects is also made easier by the Coupé’s wide and high-opening tailgate.

Prices for the Coupé begin at £16,640 for the Cooper Coupé and rise up to £23,795 for the flagship John Cooper Works Coupé. MINI describe the car as a “faithful expression of the hallmark MINI design language” and they will certainly hope that the car can gain MINI some new followers when it is released in October.

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Friday May 6th, 2011 17:41 Peugeot’s EX1 Smashes Nurburgring Record

Peugeot EX1


Peugeot’s EX1 concept roadster has just set the record for the fastest lap at the Nurburgring by an electric vehicle. The record previously stood at 9 minutes and 51.45 seconds, and was held by the Mini E Race, a lightweight version of the Mini E two-seat EV. Despite weather conditions being “far from favourable,” the EX1 managed to cut over 50 seconds off the previous record, clocking a lap time of 9 minutes and 1.338 seconds. The electric car managed to do this with an average of speed of 86mph.

Although it is supposedly styled to look like a water droplet, the EX1 has, in terms of its appearance, been likened to the batmobile. Based on the Asphalte and the 20cup concept, it is powered by two electric motors. While one motor is located at the front of the car, the other is located at the back. It has a 30kWh lithium-Ion battery pack, and can be recharged from a standard electric outlet. Alternatively, it can be recharged simply by parking it inside the custom-built garage that Peugeot has built to go with it. According to Peugeot, under normal driving conditions, the EX1 can run for a maximum of 174 miles.

In comparison to other green cars, the Peugeot EX1′s performance statistics are certainly very impressive. Its horsepower stands at 340bhp, nearly 100bhp more than the Tesla Roadster, and its maximum torque stands at 240Nm, 40Nm more than the Roadster. It goes from 0-62mph in just 3.7 seconds and, from a standing start, can reach its maximum speed of 162mph in just 6.6 seconds. That top speed of 162mph is 37mph faster than Tesla’s Roadster.

Built as part of Peugeot’s 200th anniversary, the EX1 has already set 6 new world acceleration records, and looks to be a significant step forward in terms of high performance green cars.


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Tuesday March 8th, 2011 13:48 New Rocketman Mini is “mini”

BMW Mini RocketmanAt the Geneva Auto show, car manufacturer BMW made its debut with the new Rocketman mini concept car. The new BMW mini returns to its roots by embracing a smaller size and awesome style. The car returns to the three door hatchback of the original model while adding a new twist of carbon-fiber doors that are double hinged. The double hinge allows doors to pivot out and away from the body, allowing easy access to all internal areas of the car. Overall length of the car comes in at less than 135 inches truly making the Rocketman a true mini.

Despite the small size of this car, the BMW mini manages to have room for up to four adults in the innovative three plus one seating. By adjusting seats in the front row, adequate room for three adults plus one for “short trips” can be made. Flexibility plays a key row in design of this concept car. In addition to flexible seating, rear storage can be altered depending on needs. The tailgate is two pieces, including a pull out drawer that can be pulled away from the body depending on storage needs.
The roof surface contains optic fibres that can illuminate to recreate the Union Jack flag or when turned off provide stark contrast to the grey body with the white finish. The interior of the car centres around classic features like the over sized centre dial but brings in new features like a removable console. The removable console can be brought inside and programmed before journeys. The Rocketman concept shows mini does not have to sacrifice fun.


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