New MINI Metro Runner Reportedly Coming in 2023

MINI recently unveiled its facelifted lineup at the North American International Auto Show and a new report is claiming big changes are on the horizon.

A handful of BMW and MINI models ride on front-wheel UKL platform but the company has reportedly determined its upcoming FAAR architecture is too expensive to be used on MINI models. As a result, the company tried to convince Toyota to jointly-develop a new small car platform. However, those talks fell through and pushed BMW to pursue a partnership with Great Wall.

Automobile Magazine claims the first model based on the new platform will debut in 2023 and is tentatively known as the Metro Runner. It will reportedly be followed by a Clubman-like Metro Cruiser and a Metro Adventurer which is billed as a smaller replacement for the Countryman. The MINI Convertible, on the other hand, will reportedly be dropped.

Speaking of models getting the axe, Automobile says the 1-Series three-door hatchback will be dropped next year. It will eventually be joined by the 2-Series Convertible and 2-Series Gran Tourer.

In related news, the publication claims the next-generation Rolls-Royce Ghost will be offered as an electric vehicle.

On the BMW side, plans for an i5 and i9 have reportedly been scrapped. However, we can expect an all-new i7 and a crossover-inspired iX1 which will apparently replace the i3.

The i8 successor will reportedly become a “brand-shaper” that “combines the best of all worlds” and will help to define the company for the 21st century. Three proposals are reportedly under consideration including everything from a modest redesign and powertrain upgrade to a radical performance plug-in hybrid with up to 800 hp (596 kW).

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  • Owen Hamilton

    I’d be surprised if it is called the Metro, Jaguar Land Rover still own the Rover name and presumably therefore the Metro name as well.

    • Lloyd Anthony D Peters

      I’m not too sure about that. Correct me if I’m wrong. But rover was sold to Nanjing Automotive. Also, Newer Rovers are sold under the Roewe badge as well, so Mini shouldn’t have any issues using the Metro name.

      • Mark Hawthorne

        According to the unofficial Austin Rover club site which has researched all of the IP from BL and Rover Group in detail, while the Rover name is owned by JLR some individual brand names, including Maxi and Metro are owned by BMW.

      • GT

        MG Rover went to SAIC, but the Rover brand went to JLR as part of an agreement from when Ford owned them. Hense SAIC inventing the Roewe brand as Rover was off limits. As far as Metro goes, who knows who, if anyone, owns that.

  • haudit

    I’m pretty sure they’ll avoid using the Metro name, as it will forever be associated with this miserable little penalty box in the UK and western Europe.

    And this equally miserable little penalty box in the US and Canada.

  • SteersUright

    Wow, this confirms, BMW is somewhat lost. Mini’s are wonderful because they’re peppy, capable and small yet feel very German and premium. Move to a Toyota platform?!?! A tiny Toyota is anything but.
    Reliable? Yes. Flimsy and very cheap in feel? Also yes.

    Also, somehow its hard to get excited about the other announcements. May not be BMW’s fault though. I think we’re at a crossroads where cars are being pushed towards becoming either a variety of mindless autonomous people movers or enthusiast specials, no middle ground, and most automakers don’t know how heavy to invest and in which product.

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