When the 4-door hardtop MINI first showed up, the diehard fans of the brand were quite vocal and less impressed by the progress of the beloved MINI. However, according to the Chairman of the MINI Dealer Council, the new models are paying off.
In a recent interview with Automotive News, Michael Vadasz, chairman of the MINI Dealer Council said that the introduction of the more practical hardtop has “opened up the hardtop buyers by half. “Anyone who was afraid of having a two-door coupe now had the option of a four-door hardtop,” Vadasz added.
Furthermore, the Countryman and now the Clubman make sure that isn’t a problem anymore. The latter is actually the largest model the Oxford plant has ever built and it is more than enough for a young family, as we discovered in our test drive.
That turned out to be a successful approach also. Vadasz says that former owners of MINI models didn’t move on from the brand because they were dissatisfied with the cars but rather because their families increased and just needed more room.
That’s great news for MINI as the company is recovering after one of its worst years in the US. Sales were down 16 percent in 2014, admittedly also due to the generation switch that took place back then.
Today, the MINI brand is on the rise and even if it’s growing slower than the industry’s average posting a 4.3 percent increase in sales in 2015 compared to an average of 5.7 percent. In case things go south, Vadasz claims that most dealers will rely on their F&I departments for profit, since they are well equipped to service cars.