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BMW Mini Rocketman Concept

 

25 February 2011 - The Rocketman, debuting at next week's Geneva motor show, should address that most familiar complaint from fans of the original. The first BMW Minis were 12ft 2in long, more than two feet longer than the dinky originals. And this year's Countryman came in at 13ft 5in. This concept is just 11ft 3in long and 4ft 7in high. That's small.

The quirky company's centrepiece at next week's 2011 Geneva Motor Show is a concept car that isn't much bigger than the original, classic Mini, and it has the most unusual set of doors seen since the MINI Clubman.

Inside it's no more conventional, with a 3+1 seating arrangement to maximise the space of a car that's only just over three metres long. MINI also claims that the Rocketman will achieve an average of 94mpg, largely because of its lightweight carbon spaceframe construction.

The sliding seat system gives you the option to slide the driver and passenger seat back for a 'full-blooded driving experience', slide the passenger seat forward to reveal an individual rear seat, or slide the entire front section forward to accommodate the aforementioned 'short journey adult'.

The two-part boot has a lower sliding section that allows luggage to be stored in a drawer, which can be locked in various positions to increase interior space.

There are other cool touches: the hooped brake lights don't illuminate, but project the brake and indicators onto the bodywork using high-output LEDs. The electronics are accessed from a trackball on the steering wheel, and in keeping with the Italian Job nostalgia, there's also a Union Jack etched into the panoramic glass roof.

The rear lights have a trapezoidal stirrup design where all light functions are integrated. Using projector technology, the lamp assembly projects the lights onto the car body. The high-output LED units ensure that even this indirect illumination concept produces enough intensity. The roof is also a light show. The full-surface glass unit is segmented by illuminated braces to recreate the Union Jack flag.

In addition to multifunction buttons on the steering wheel, the current MINI has a joystick on the center console. By contrast, the Rocketman Concept concentrates all controls on the steering wheel, which has buttons on the left spoke for frequently used functions and a trackball on the right spoke. The latter can be rolled to scroll and pressed to select.

Source: TopGear

 
 








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