Official pictures of Miniâ€™s new Clubman have been released. There will be no surprises for our regular readers who have already seen the Mini â€˜in the fleshâ€™ but there is no doubting that these are the best images yet.
Australian buyers will be interested in the fact that the cute little â€˜clubmanâ€™ door is only found on the right-hand side of the car which is probably not ideal in right-hand-drive countries. This means gaining easy access to the rear seats (or exit) is an event that will take place on the roadside rather than the footpath. So keep a close eye on the kids and look out for trucksâ€¦
It should be noted that the clubman door cannot be opened without first opening the drivers door, so those people with kids who like to haul on every lever or push every button can rest-assured that they cannot simply open the clubman door and roll-out onto the road. The reason we wonâ€™t see a Clubman with the clubman door on the left is due to the placement of the fuel filler pipe.
The main draw-card of the Clubman will no doubt be the extra length and the benefits that come with it in the form of increased rear leg room and load space.
Load space increases from 160 to 260 litres when compared to the standard Mini and with the rear seats down this is increased to 960 litres of the standard cars 680 litres.
Access to the rear is via twin doors that each boast their own individual windscreen wiper and Mini claim that the rear area will swallow your average mountain bike with the front wheel removed.
Australian delivered Clubmans will be available in two variants, Cooper and Cooper S. As with the standard Mini hatch this means an 88Kw 1.6-litre four-cylinder for the Cooper while the Cooper S gets the benefit of a turbo-charged 1.6-litre that produces a very respectable 128Kw. Performance is acceptable with 0-100 km/h taking 7.6 seconds in the Cooper S Clubman and 9.8 seconds in the Cooper. A little slower than the hatch but the Clubman does carry a 100kg weight penalty.
Interestingly, Mini claim that the Clubman achieves similar fuel consumption figures as the standard Mini hatch, shrugging off the extra weight to achieve 5.8L/100km for the Cooper and 6.9L/100km for the Cooper S. Mini have put this down to the Clubmanâ€™s slightly superior aerodynamicsâ€¦
Australian delivered Clubmans will come standard with ESP (Electronic Stability Control) which is optional on the current Mini hatch. Standard features will also include 6 airbags and hill-start-assist for folk who canâ€™t drive but still managed to get their license. Australian pricing is not know but we would expect around $35k for the Cooper as a starting point and another $10k for Cooper S. Very cool transport if you can afford it.
Source : Mini and Drive