Mini Vision Next 100 Concept: Personal mobility to the max
Making its debut in London as part of parent-company BMW’s centenary celebration, the Mini Vision Next 100 Concept provides insight as to how the automaker might tailor its various brands to best meet future transport needs. With unique styling, autonomous capabilities and full-time connectivity, Mini’s design chief Anders Warming maintains that the driving experience is the concept’s emotional centerpiece. Equally important, the creative brief involved devising a vehicle that could be shared by many but allows it to be individually personalized by each driver.
Have it your way
While retaining classic Mini cues, the Vision Next 100 Concept is a bold take on a one-box theme by eliminating the conventional hood in favor of an extended windscreen that melds with a transparent front fascia. This change is made possible by the car’s rear-mounted electric drivetrain. Roughly 11 inches shorter than the current Mini Hardtop, this cheeky one-off matches a wide track with short overhangs. The car also is fitted with two-piece wheels that sport a stationary exterior surface with a rotating inner element that actually carries tire, creating a unique look when the car is in motion. And to impart a genuinely custom character, the driver can project various graphic elements directly onto the undersurface of its subtle “blank canvas” silver-colored skin.
Access to the passenger compartment of the Vision Next 100 Concept is via two pairs of sliding doors with no conventional B-pillar. Inside, this Mini one-off displays a clean, uncluttered aesthetic. In addition to abundant use of recycled and recyclable materials for enhanced sustainability, the Vision Next 100 Concept also features robust materials like brass, basalt and cellulose. Bucket seats are supplanted by a bolstered full-width bench up front. Meanwhile, the steering wheel and pedals can be slid out of the way when the car is operating in autonomous mode.
One thing that does remain is the Mini’s signature circular center dash element – here redubbed the “Cooperizer.” It features rotary controls that can modify everything from ambient lighting to driving modes – which Mini says includes a performance-biased John Cooper Works setting. There’s even an “Inspire Me” mode that will examine an individual’s downloaded data and offer suggestions on destinations or driving routes.
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