In what appears to be a change of direction for the company, BMW Group is willing to co-develop and share the next-generation Mini platform with another automaker.
"The door is still open," said Wolfgang Armbrecht, Mini's vice president of brand management at the Detroit auto show. "Today in the car business, you have to create fascinating cars. But, on the other hand, you have to be realistic as far as economics are concerned."
Currently, PSA/Peugeot-Citroen SA supplies a 1.6-liter gasoline engine for Mini.
Last March, BMW Group CEO Norbert Reithofer said the automaker had ended discussions to co-develop and share the next-generation platform with the Italian brand Alfa Romeo.
At the time, Reithofer said: "After intensive examination, we have determined that cooperation involving the Mini and Alfa Romeo brands with regard to a possible common platform doesn't make any sense. Even in the future, a Mini has to drive like a Mini."
Armbrecht did not refer to Reithofer's comments.
"We will investigate," Armbrecht said. "Why not?"