Mini reveals new design details, including a round touchscreen
It’s not that the Mini brand wants to reinvent the wheel. Except that maybe it does. It's even reinventing the circle.
“Charismatic Simplicity” is what the brand has termed its new design language, which will show up on a new family of all-electric models. The looks will appear on the next-generation Cooper and Countryman.
The interiors reflect the most noticeable changes on the cars, marked especially by a round OLED (organic light-emitting display) — yes, the entire central circle of the infotainment system will be a touch-sensitive display. It will have a diameter of 9.4 inches and will combine all the functions of the infotainment system and the instrument cluster. Touch control will manage infotainment and climate functions.
That's certainly the most intriguing detail previewed, but Mini did not share images of the touchscreen. Here's all they've shared so far:
At the centre of the visually reduced interior is the circular central instrument display iconic of MINI, which will be reinterpreted in the form of an OLED display in the upcoming model family. MINI is the world’s first car manufacturer to offer a touch display with a fully usable round surface. The OLED display has a diameter of 240 millimetres and combines the functions of the instrument cluster and the on-board monitor. The sleek design and frameless look give it a particularly highquality appearance. The touch control enables a completely new, minimalistic user interface that also controls the integrated infotainment and climate functions. With the purist dashboard as a stage for the circular central display, MINI continues the traditional design heritage of the classic MINI.
The steering wheel, not really reinvented but tweaked, will be available in a couple of versions, with either two spokes or three, and Mini will offer a variety of colors, patterns and fabrics for the seats.
Finally, the alloy wheels are updated, to “no longer focus on the sculptural nature of the spoke structure, but on a graphic design characterized by strong color contrasts,” the company says. “This creates an illusion of size, which is further emphasized by the outward-pointing spokes.”
“Our purist, progressive approach combines the simplicity of functional elements with the emotionality that Mini is renowned for,” says Oliver Heilmer, head of Mini Design. “We are convinced that the conscious reduction to a few, but expressive elements enable innovations that would have been unthinkable before.”