The MINI Rocketman Concept caused quite a stir at the Geneva Motor Show 2011 as a ground-breaking new concept car majoring in driving fun in tight spaces. The 3+1-seater, with its three doors and an exterior length of just over three metres, is imbued with the timeless core values of the brand: irresistible design, clever functionality, smile-inducing agility and exceptional efficiency. In the process, it also offers a very contemporary take on the “creative use of space” principle that has held sway at the British carmaker for more than 50 years.
The concept car approaches classic Mini territory in terms of dimensions, while advanced technology underpins a lifestyle-focused mobility solution equipped for life in large cities such as London over the years ahead. The MINI Rocketman Concept’s spaceframe is made from carbon-fibre-reinforced plastic, enabling a lightweight construction. Its innovative interior concept accommodates three full-size seats and an extra seat suitable for short journeys.
The new edition of the concept car sees MINI reaffirming its commitment to the brand’s British roots. The classic Mini reached out from its homeland to leave an indelible mark on roads around the world, and MINI Plant Oxford now produces no fewer than five models for the brand’s global markets. The new MINI Rocketman Concept wears its British heritage on its sleeve, most prominently in its exterior and interior colour schemes and more subtly through the use of extremely high-quality materials and stylish details. All in all, it embodies a typically British form of sporting elegance.
The colours of the British national flag, the Union Jack, come to the fore on both the outside and inside of the car, red and white accents accompanying the dominant dark blue. The body’s non-metallic paintwork is interspersed with exposed carbon components at the front end and around the doors. And the 18-inch light-alloy wheels have white polished areas and a metallic red accent. Matt Porcelain White paintwork is also used for the mirror caps, boot opener and surrounds for the radiator grille and headlights. The grille structure made up of MINI logos could certainly be described as an “eye magnet”, thanks also to its red metallic paint finish and contrasting white surround. A red strip emphasises the path of the hallmark MINI diagonal link between the wheel arch and door at the foot of the A-pillar. This takes a particularly chunky form on the concept car and also makes a feature of the door hinges. The two-section split boot opening consists of one upward-pivoting element and a second segment which extends out of the body in the form of a drawer and which is also painted blue on the inside in the new MINI Rocketman Concept. The rear lights have a trapezoidal stirrup design and work using projector technology.
Another special feature is the distinctive lighting design for the roof. The concept car has a full-surface glass roof, whose illuminated braces recreate the look of Britain’s Union Jack flag. Even when the roof is not illuminated, the braces running horizontally, lengthways and diagonally continue to shine in bright Porcelain White. In darkness, the integrated optical fibres provide a pleasant indirect illumination of the interior and a compelling night design visible from the outside. On the new MINI Rocketman Concept, the roof’s transparent surfaces are bordered by a metallic red painted strip.