Spy Shots: MINI Clubman S Hybrid

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MINI must have some moderately evil geniuses in their skunkworks, as this MINI Clubman S Hybrid is the second prototype spotted since April. The last one was a hydrogen-fueled hybrid wearing a BMW skin, but this time, it's a full-on MINI, and it's not using star juice.

Though we can only guess that the hybrid system is some combination of existing MINI gas-burner plus an electric drive. It's certainly a hybrid, however, if the stickers down each door are to be trusted.

The look of the hybrid MINI is a bit different from the standard model, with a new front clip featuring larger air intakes and a side-pipe exhaust setup. We're betting the side pipes won't make it to production. Likewise, the Clubman platform may not be the choice for retail units--it may simply offer more room for onboard testing and evaluation equipment.

While this vehicle may be a test mule for a hybrid headed to production, it could also just be an engineering prototype or testbed for research. On the other hand, a MINI hybrid could take the fight to Honda's CR-Z, delivering both fuel efficiency and what the CR-Z lacks: a truly sporty hatchback platform.

We'll keep our eyes peeled and our spy photographers' lenses focused to bring the latest as it happens.

 
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Comments (4)
  1. Instead of the hybrid how about bring the diesel to America

  2. Not true HyundaiSmoke, diesels have great milage, and lots of low end torque, so it is a great engine. Hybrids like this do not pay off the premium for about 10 years while a diesel version of the MINI would pay off the premium after 5 years

  3. Diesels are not useless, diesels are better then hybrids

  4. HyundaiSmoke You need to watch a documentry called FUEL. It will tell you that BIODIESEL is Far better for the environment and that if you have a diesel already you dont need to convert it. Unless you want to use frier grease which is stupid

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