October 11 2011
What could be more British than a Mini Cooper? OK, let’s gloss lightly over the fact that the BMW Group now owns the brand – the fact is that the cute cars (even the newer models) still scream the best of British spirit. And they’re nippy, too: think of The Italian Job and the three Minis racing down the steps of the Gran Madre di Dio in Turin while a wedding is taking place. So Mini’s official partnership with Team GB and Paralympics GB has good synergy.
To celebrate the London Olympics, Mini has unveiled its London 2012 Edition – special, limited-edition Coopers – and the pre-sale list is now open. Just 2,012 of these will be made, and they’ll be on the road from March 2012. In patriotic-for-Brits colours – Chilli Red, White Silver or Lightning Blue – the Cooper, Cooper D, Cooper S and Cooper SD will each have a white roof with the London 2012 Olympic graphic emblazoned on it. A Union Jack sport stripe over the bonnet, roof and rear tailgate plus unique grey 17in conical spoke alloy wheels add to its “go faster” appeal. The interior (second picture) sports not only red and blue stitching with white piping on the black leather upholstery but the silver London skyline etched artfully across the dashboard. Naturally, there is a DAB radio, air con, cruise control, chrome interior touches – and the promise that the low-CO2-emitting Cooper D model, at least, is exempt from the London Congestion Charge.
Which is all well and good – great, in fact. But if the chaps at Mini really want to be onto a winner, all they have to do is lend film director Danny Boyle, artistic director for the London Games, a fleet of the Mini 2012s to be driven at speed down the steps of the Olympic Stadium during the glittering opening ceremony. Gold medals all round.