The all-new third generation of the MINI Countryman is getting closer to its debut and new reports are highlighting the engine lineup of the SUV. According to Autocar, the flagship PHEV variant will produce a combined 318 hp (240 kW / 322 PS) making it the most powerful Mini to date.
The plug-in hybrid powertrain will reportedly consist of a 1.5-liter three-cylinder petrol engine, a rear-mounted electric motor producing 172 hp (128 kW / 174 PS), and a 14.2 kWh battery. The alleged combined output of 318 hp (240 kW / 322 PS) sent to all four wheels is superior to the current Cooper SE Countryman ALL4 PHEV which makes 224 hp (167 kW / 227 PS). In fact, it is even more powerful than the current performance-focused MINI Countryman JCW which makes 301 hp (224 kW / 305 PS) from the 2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo four-cylinder engine. We don’t know however if MINI decides to use the JCW name for the new PHEV, initiating the already confirmed electrification of the John Cooper Works nameplate.
The new plug-in hybrid Countryman will reportedly offer an electric range of up to 89 km (55 miles), more than double of its predecessor’s 42 km (26 miles) range. A full charge of the 14.2 kWh battery will only require 2.5 hours from a 7.4 kWh charger. Similar specifications are also expected from the PHEV variant of the upcoming BMW X1 sibling.
Besides the flagship model, MINI will reportedly offer a second plug-in hybrid option with a lower combined output of 172 hp (177 kW / 241 PS). As for the rest of the range, it will allegedly include a mild-hybrid turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder petrol with 166 hp (124 kW / 168 PS), a mild-hybrid turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder petrol with 212 hp (158 kW / 215 PS), and a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel. Finally, we should also expect a fully electric variant following in the near future with FWD as standard.
As we have seen from numerous spy photos, the Countryman will retain the signature elements of the MINI brand but with a cleaner approach. Our spy photographers have also caught what appeared to be a hotter version with quad exhaust pipes, larger intakes on the front bumper, larger diameter wheels, and beefier brakes although this could be an ICE-powered prototype and not the aforementioned PHEV.
In any case, the Countryman is expected to grow by 200 mm (7.5-8.0 inches) in length compared to its predecessor, resulting in a more spacious cabin. The dashboard will feature a larger round touchscreen, a small digital instrument cluster, a head-up display, a new two-spoke steering wheel, and fewer physical buttons.
The MINI Countryman will share an updated version of the FAAR platform with the upcoming BMW X1 and X2 which will be produced in the same Leipzig factory in Germany. Another mechanically-related model is the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer that is already available in Europe.
Image Credits: S. Baldauf/SB-Medien and CarPix for CarScoops
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