Mini is preparing the fourth generation of its modern lineup, and among the first members to arrive will be a redesigned Hardtop, a prototype for which has been spotted.
The car will debut later this year as a 2025 model, and Mini will revert to calling it a Cooper. Currently, Cooper is the name of the Hardtop's base grade.
There will be both gas and electric versions. The electric 2025 Cooper has already been shown in mid-range Cooper SE guise (shown below), and now we have spy shots of a prototype for the gas-powered 2025 Cooper.
This time around, the electric Cooper is based on a dedicated electric vehicle platform developed by BMW Group and Great Wall Motors in a Chinese joint venture known as Spotlight. Production of the electric version will also be handled in China. Production of the gas Cooper will be handled at BMW Group's plant in Oxford, U.K., where the current Hardtop is built.
2025 Mini Cooper
With the arrival of the dedicated EV platform, Mini will offer more electric options. At launch we'll see a base Cooper E with a 40.7-kwh battery and a single electric motor rated at 181 hp. There will also be a Cooper SE with a 54.2-kwh battery and a single electric motor good for 215 hp. Mini has also hinted at a high-performance John Cooper Works EV.
The gas Cooper is set to be a heavy update of the outgoing Hardtop rather than a true redesign, which is reflected in the spy shots. This makes sense as Mini plans to go the full-electric route later this decade, and has even locked in 2025 as the date that its final gas model will be launched.
2025 Mini Cooper S spy shots - Photo credit: Baldauf
While the exterior design won't change much, the interior should adopt a new design shared with the electric Cooper. Look for the signature round element in the center stack, though now with a circular screen spanning the whole section.
Underpinning the gas Cooper will be BMW Group's FAAR platform for front-wheel-drive cars. It's an evolution of the UKL platform underpinning the current Mini range, which means plug-in hybrid power will be possible, though it hasn't been confirmed. The latest spy shots show the Cooper S grade, which will likely continue with a 2.0-liter turbo-4, though perhaps with increased performance from the current model's 189-hp rating.
2025 Mini Countryman spy shots - Photo credit: Baldauf
The coming years will be busy for Mini as the brand renews its lineup and adds new model lines. A redesigned Countryman is due for the 2025 model year, and will also offer both gas and electric options. It debuts later this year and will be built in Germany, a first for a Mini. The current Countryman is built in the Netherlands.
Also due for the 2025 model year is the Aceman, an electric crossover smaller than the Countryman. It was previewed by last year's Aceman concept and will fill in for the Clubman, which bows out after the 2024 model year.