MINI’s Oxford, UK plant saw a first on July 1st as the new MINI 5-door Hatch comes off the production line.
The 5-door marks another phase in the roll-out of a $1.28 billion (£750 million) investment program across BMW Group UK’s production facilities from 2011 to 2015.
Coming after the redesign of the MINI Hatch, which was launched in November, the 5-door, will go on sale in the autumn in Europe. Mini welcomed the new addition to the Oxford-made cars as the opener to a whole new market segment.
The 5-door is the second member of the MINI family to be built on a new platform. The company explained the new innovative approach to design increases the flexibility of the body manufacturing process, allowing more models of greater variation to be produced more efficiently, an essential element of the MINI’s build-to-order appeal.
Preparations for the new generation of MINI have seen the building of a new bodyshop at Oxford and significant investment in facilities and technologies at Swindon’s plant, where the car’s body panels are pressed and a number of sub-assemblies made.
MINI 5-door Hatch, key statistics:
- Measures 4 m in length
- 161 mm longer than the three-door
- 278 liters of boot space
- 15 mm more headroom
- 61 mm extra interior width
- Three rear seats