MINI has revealed the all-new Clubman, ahead of its UK dealer launch in autumn 2015. Not only is it bigger than any previous MINI, it also has more doors: now with four side doors, the premium compact load-lugger has SIX doors in total!
How much is the new MINI Clubman?
Prices for the new MINI Clubman range start from £19,995 – a big step up over today’s car, but it is a bigger car overall, with luxuries such as sat nav now as standard. 136hp 1.5-litre Cooper, 150hp 2.0-litre Cooper D and 192hp 2.0-litre Cooper S variants are available from launch with more models following later.
What sort of car is the 2015 MINI Clubman?
A stylish ‘mini-estate’, the MINI Clubman is a notably bigger car than the regular Hatch: the firm hopes it can become a compact family car alternative, sitting above the premium superminis that make up the core of its range. Key stat: it’s 4,253mm long. At 4,255mm, a Volkswagen Golf is just 2mm longer… and the MINI Clubman is actually wider!
How significant is that extra side door?
The old Clubman was meant to be a more practical MINI, but the side ‘clubdoor’ never really worked. Particularly as MINI didn’t swap sides for UK cars, so rear passengers had to step out into the road! Having one on both sides fixes this.
And there’s more door joy for the six-door MINI…
Even better, the two rear doors open conventionally, rather than the fiddly arrangement of the old Clubman. They’re full-sized doors so offer the practicality of the new five-door MINI Hatch: they’re a huge improvement.
Remind us – what makes this a MINI Clubman six-door?
MINI has retained one aspect of the old Clubman – the twin side-hinged rear boot doors. One or both can be opened, so you can really have six doors open at once on a MINI.
Is there a trick addition for the rear doors?
MINI has added electric operation for the rear doors, for a really cool supermarket trick. Even better, they’re ‘hands free’ – wave a leg under the rear bumper and they magically swing open…
It looks wider than the old Clubman…
It is. It’s 73mm wider than the MINI 5-door Hatch, too. And, as we’ve mentioned, wider than a Volkswagen Golf. Yup, the new MINI Clubman has grown – a lot.
How big is the new MINI Clubman?
The new MINI Clubman is appreciably larger than the old one, and rather a lot bigger than the new MINI Hatch 5-door; it’s a hefty 270mm longer. The wheelbase is 100mm longer than the five-door too. We should indeed now see it as more of a Ford Focus family car rival.
How big is the boot on the new MINI Clubman?
This is the big story: at last, there’s a MINI with a decent boot! Open up the twin rear doors and, even with the seats up, 360 litres of space is on offer. That’s not far shy of a Volkswagen Golf.
MINI’s Tardis-like boot
There’s more: flip up the flat boot floor and there’s even more space. Those cuppies in the sides are handy, and note the ultra-bright twin LED lighting – a premium touch.
How big is the MINI Clubman boot seats down?
Fold the seats and the boot expands to 1,250 litres. The rear seats easily fold flat too: mind you, even with them up, you can jam in ample family holiday luggage like MINI has above.
What’s the interior of the MINI Clubman like?
At first glance, the interior of the MINI Clubman looks just the same as the MINI Hatch. But look again – it’s subtly different, with a dash that now flows into the door panels, plus a main instrument panel that’s taller and has a wrap-around hoop-shaped trim strip.
Is the new Clubman more premium?
Switches and controls have a more upmarket finish, reflecting the car’s higher list price, although the MINI trademarks such as the circular central display remain – only now, it’s used for the infotainment system.
A comfier Clubman
The centre console stretches up to meet the dashboard for the first time in a MINI, creating a more premium feel and also allowing a proper armrest to be fitted. Because it’s higher, it positions the rotary infotainment controller more conveniently.
A roomier Clubman
The MINI Clubman has a rear roomy enough for three occupants, promises MINI. It certainly looks spacious enough, and the extra wheelbase length over the already-decent 5-door Hatch means we’re encouraged by MINI’s claims here.
A more practical Clubman
The MINI Clubman is the most practical MINI ever too: its extra dimensions mean it’s easy to stow away things like water bottles: you take this for granted in other cars but the MINI’s compactness has always meant it’s struggled here. Not anymore?
We love this functional aero detail in the side of the MINI Clubman. The wings have been sculpted out at the bottom of the iconic black wheelarches, to create an airway path – this reduces drag and creates an interesting styling effect for the Clubman’s side panels.
Will the MINI Clubman drive well?
With a 0-62mph in 7.2 seconds, the range-topping Cooper S Clubman won’t be short of pace. But the fact it’s based on that BMW 2 Series-derived platform is also encouraging – it’ll be more than a match for a Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus.
Does MINI have high hopes for the reborn Clubman?
MINI hopes the new Clubman will open up entirely new buyers to the brand – those who’ve always considered a MINI far too small and impractical. This is why it’s so much bigger, and why so much attention has been put into the interior layout and finish.
So is the new MINI Clubman a genuinely new British family class contender?
On paper, the new MINI Clubman is an interesting new addition. Because it’s so much bigger than before, it suddenly is able to compete with the Golf and Focus for family car honours. Will this bear out in the showroom though? Keep on clicking and make up your own mind…