Mini says increased demand for new three and five-door Mini and foreordained plans are bringing production of the Coupe and Roadster to an end.
Also, it turns out people didn’t want less practical versions of a car that already lacked a certain degree of flexibility.
Surely Mini would have thought twice about cancelling production of the two cars – or at least considered replacing them with new versions off the new Mini platform – had sales been strong.
Americans have registered only 6679 Mini Roadsters since the two-seat convertible arrived in 2012. Roadster volume jumped 18% in 2013, the first full year for the car, but 2014 sales plunged 49%. Only 65 were sold in January 2015, which actually represented a 12% uptick compared with January 2014.
The helmet-wearing Coupe, which went on sale in 2011, attracted 7351 U.S. owners through the end of January 2015. (Few Coupes are left; only 22 were sold last month.) Coupe sales jumped to a high of 2880 units in 2012, the car’s first full year, but slipped 12% in 2013 and plunged 62% in 2014.
But the Coupe and Roadster were never integral parts of the Mini USA lineup. Together, they generated just 8% of the brand’s volume in 2012 and 2013; just 4% in 2014.
Mini now turns its focus to its core models: the three-door Hardtop, the Countryman, and the new five-door model. Mini’s U.S. sales jumped 27% in January as the Hardtops generated two-thirds of the brand’s volume and the Countryman, though down 31%, brought in 23% of buyers. For every Clubman, Convertible, Coupe, and Roadster sold in January, Mini USA sold nine conventional Hardtop models.
While Mini continues to be a relatively small part of BMW USA’s portfolio, generating less than half the sales of the 3-Series/4-Series lineup in January, Mini’s home market is terribly keen.
22% of the BMW Group’s UK volume was Mini-derived in January. Mini owned 1.4% of the market (0.3% in the U.S.; 0.2% in Canada) and the brand ranked 21st overall, behind Mazda, Renault, and Volvo, but ahead of Suzuki, Mitsubishi, Dacia, Lexus, Jaguar, Porsche, Jeep, and Alfa Romeo.