Wednesday, April 25, 2012

MINI Diesels For U.S., Dual-Clutches And . .

Car and Driver interviews MINI head Kay Segler.  Segler says, in part:
Are diesel models a possibility for the U.S.?

Diesels in general are a topic for the environment, and for America. It won’t happen in the current lineup because we can’t justify the business case yet. But for future models, we’ll look at it very closely because dealers and customers continue to approach us about it. That pertains not only to the U.S. market, but also to other markets, such as Japan.

Which transmission strategy do you follow? Wouldn’t a dual-clutch box be a better brand fit than a traditional automatic?

Of course, a John Cooper Works is screaming for a dual-clutch transmission, but you can also improve an automatic transmission to a level where you hardly recognize the difference anymore. Over the entire lineup, demand is higher for automatics. Of course, we consider going from six to eight gears or similar, that is a topic [of conversation]. The John Cooper Works Countryman now comes with a manual and an automatic and we are very curious how these choices will be accepted.



* * *

And does the small Rocketman have a chance of series production?

The main issue here is the business case. I don’t believe that a smaller car could be that much less expensive to make, but the customer would expect it to be offered for a few thousand dollars less. What we have seen here are design features that were popular. We didn’t do the concept just to get attention, but we want to see what elements could work on other models.

* * *

No comments: