When Audi first revealed the A1 Citycarver, it seemed like a bit of an oddity. As a small hatchback with a slightly higher ride height, rugged body panels and longer travel suspension, it doesn’t exactly seem like the sort of car you’d want to “carve” a city with. After some thought, though, the Audi A1 Citycarver actually makes a bit of sense. So much sense, in fact, that it seems that MINI wants to create a competitor.
For those of you not in the know, MINI is owned by the BMW Group, a rival neighbor of Audi’s. So it’s not surprising that BMW would want to create something to rival one of Audi’s newest cars, especially one that’s designed to be driven in urban European cities.
While a rugged hatchback doesn’t seem much like a city car, it actually makes some sense. The longer travel suspension is better for potholes and tall curbs, the taller seating position makes outward visibility better and the compact size makes it easy to park.
A new rumor from Motor.es claims that the plucky British brand, owned by Zee Germans, is going to develop a rugged city hatchback for city streets, just like the Audi A1 Citycarver. We don’t know what sort of car this will be, officially, but it’s not hard to venture a guess. It will likely be something smaller than its Countryman SUV but it will need to have four doors.
Considering that the Audi A1 Citycarver is just a standard A1 with some taller suspension and some faux rugged body panels, MINI will likely just do the same with an existing car, rather than make something new. So it could use a Cooper 4-Door and just jack the suspension up a bit. That would make a near-identical competitor to the Citycarver while spending very little extra money to do so.
We don’t know what sort of powertrain this MINI will have but it’s likely it will just get the same standard MINI engines that are on offer today. Those powertrains are also quite similar to what Audi offers, so it would make some sense.
There’s no official word if such a MINI is actually going to make production but it wouldn’t be surprising. The Audi A1 Citycarver might not make a ton of sense to most enthusiasts but it seems as if it’s at least caught the eyes of its competitors.