In 2019, Mini will launch an electric version of its iconic hatchback. The Mini E will arrive exactly 10 years after the BMW Group subsidiary started trials of the battery-powered model. Mini boss Peter Schwarzenbauer spoke about the automaker's move into the EV sector and predicted another record sales year for the British brand during a recent conversation with Automotive News Europe Associate Publisher and Editor Luca Ciferri and Correspondent Nick Gibbs.
Will Mini have record sales this year?
Yes. Unless the world completely changes in the remaining months, we should have another record year. Since we launched the new-generation hatchback [in 2014] we've had a record year every year.
The new Mini electric concept appeared at the Frankfurt auto show ahead of its sales launch in 2019. Is this the fifth member of the models you have dubbed Mini's superheroes?
Yes. But, I thought you were going to ask about the Superleggera [two-seat concept] again [laughs].
Demand is down for the small sports car segment, right?
Yes, significantly. That's why it was difficult to put something like the Superleggera into production.