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Exactly 45 years after the launch of the Mini Traveller in September 1960, MINI is presenting the MINI Concept Frankfurt at the 2005 Frankfurt Motor Show - a design study re-interpreting the philosophy of the little Traveller from Great Britain through a new concept of 'Travelling in Style" befitting the beginning of the 21st century.
In its overall look and appearance, this concept car with numerous design features in the meantime acknowledged as genuine icons is typical of MINI all the way. And numerous innovations both inside and outside are equally typical of the brand: Wide-opening doors with parallelogram kinematics characterise this very special car in the same way as its coupe-like look without a B-pillar, the new silver metallic paintwork and exquisite materials within the interior.
The MINI Concept Frankfurt also quotes the classic Mini Traveller also through its elegant Estate design boasting a symmetrically split double door at the back as well as split rear side windows.
In its overall appearance the MINI Concept Frankfurt is sleek and smooth, while nevertheless placing the emphasis on important features such as the wheel arches, the shoulder line and the powerdome. So the MINI Concept Frankfurt makes a clear visual statement, this is a car full of class, muscle, and elegance all in one.
The Overall Concept, Clever MINI Style All the Way.
The fundamental idea in developing MINI Concept Frankfurt was to make loading and entering the car as simple and convenient as possible. This is why all four doors (the driver/front passenger and rear doors) come with parallelo, gram kinematic joints and springs: To allow optimum access and entry into the car, the doors swivel to the side and at the same time to the front in one single movement, ensuring maximum opening space leading into the interior.
The rear sliding windows open electrically, the front section moving parallel beneath the rear half. With the windows fully open, MINI Concept Frankfurt thus provides a particularly impressive feeling of style and generosity otherwise to be found only in a coupe and convertible. And thanks to the long wheelbase, the two rear seats are easy to reach while at the same time the exterior of the car offers a particularly dynamic and sporting impression.
Despite rumors that Mini's concept car at Frankfurt would be an SUV, a four-door sedan, or a roadster, it ended up being less removed from the traditional tiny two-door Mini that so many have fallen in love with. The concept, called Mini Concept Frankfurt--a name that Homer Simpson might have come up with - is still a two-door box, taking its inspiration from the Mini Countryman of the 1960s. The difference between this one and a regular Mini is that it has a longer wheelbase and a station wagon rear end. Most of the extra space goes into the rear cargo compartment, which German BMW executives showed off with an obedient twenty-five-pound pooch. Access to the back end is through vertically split rear doors, which are notable for the fact that they open independent of the taillights (see photos). Rear-seat passengers who like the wind buffeting in their faces would enjoy the sliding rear side windows.
The pearlescent show car also has a different front end with slanty Aston Martin-like headlamps. The interior is very flashy, very chrome-laden, and highly unlikely to reach production. However, we're betting that the overall layout of this car will reach production in the very near future.
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