News : MINI Paceman unveiled

These images of the all-new Paceman have been revealed in advance of the Paris motor show unveil – and MINI has confirmed the car is set for UK launch in March 2013. Styled as a coupé interpretation of the Countryman, four versions will be available, including the MINI Cooper S Paceman which will have a 0-60mph of just 7.3 seconds.

It’s the seventh member of the MINI family, and it will sell alongside the Hatch, Clubman, Convertible, Countryman, Coupé and Roadster. The Austrian-built Paceman is built on the Countryman platform, bumper to bumper the car is 4109 mm (4115mm for MINI Cooper S Paceman and Cooper SD Paceman), which makes it almost identical in size to its sibling.

The upright front grille, complete with hexagonal radiator grille and broad chrome surround, gives the Paceman genuine presence. Its coupé-style stretched side profile features long doors, while the blacked-out pillars create a ‘floating’ roof concept, as already seen on the MINI Coupé. Available in either black, white or body colour, the roof gently slopes towards the rear of the car, ending at the integrated spoiler. The horizontal arrangement of the rear lights, which accentuates the car’s width, is a first for MINI.

The Paceman is the only member of the brand’s line-up to be identified by a rear nameplate.The car’s interior has been designed specifically for this model. Its highlight is the innovative rear seat, which has been styled around a lounge concept. Two individual chairs provide generous levels of head, shoulder and knee room with outstanding comfort and support. Armrests have been integrated into the rear trim. A two-section version of the MINI Centre Rail storage and attachment system – first seen in the Countryman – comes as standard. A full-length variant is available as an option.

The Paceman is a strict four-seater, though practicality has not been sacrificed. Folding down the rear seats expands the rear load-carrying capacity from 330 litres to a maximum of 1080 litres. Access is via a large and high-opening tailgate, offering extra practicality for owners. In the front, the raised seating position gives the driver and passenger an excellent view in every direction.

The instrument panel includes many familiar components, including the large round central speedo. However, its black surround and decorative inner rings in high-gloss black or chrome are new, as are the redesigned air vent surrounds. Buttons for the windows, which have been toggle switches below the speedo on every MINI to date, have moved to the door trim panel.

From launch, Paceman customers will have the choice of two petrol and two diesel engines. All come with a six-speed manual gearbox, or the optional six-speed automatic with Steptronic function for manual control. For petrol buyers, the MINI Cooper Paceman features a 1.6-litre 122bhp unit offering a 0-60mph time of 10.4 seconds, fuel economy of 47.1mpg with CO2 emissions of 140 g/km. The MINI Cooper S Paceman uses the same engine, tuned to deliver 184bhp. It will sprint to 60mph in 7.5 seconds. Fuel economy is 46.3mpg and emissions are 143g/km.

The MINI Cooper D Paceman uses a 1.6-litre 112bhp turbocharged engine with a 0-62mph time of 10.8 seconds. It will provide owners with a frugal 64.2mpg fuel economy and 115g/km emissions. The flagship diesel is the MINI Cooper SD Paceman, which gets a 2.0-litre 143bhp engine. Its 0-60mph time is 9.2 seconds. Fuel economy is 61.4mpg with an emissions figure of 122g/km.

For buyers who want the reassuring grip that comes with four-wheel drive, MINI’s ALL4 system is available on the Cooper D, SD and Cooper S Paceman, models. And for those seeking the ultimate in MINI performance and desirability, a John Cooper Works Paceman version is in development.

Under the Paceman’s body shell, sophisticated chassis technology includes MacPherson spring struts and forged cross members at the front axle, a multi-link rear axle and electric power steering with Servotronic function. These combine to provide a sure-footed yet dynamic driving experience. Extra fun can be summoned via the sport button, optional on Cooper and Cooper D, which tweaks the engine’s responses and the power assistance provided by the steering.

Driver aids include Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) as standard across the range, with Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) including Electronic Differential Lock Control (EDLC) on the MINI Cooper S Paceman, Cooper SD Paceman and Cooper D Paceman ALL4. Light alloy wheels in 16in and 17in sizes are standard, with 18in or 19in on the options list.

It will go sale on 16 March 2013 with prices starting at just £18,970 on the road.


Keith Adams


  1. From some angles it looks okay and I like the colour and alloys too – but MINI’s are not what they used to be (too big). Got to move with the times though?

  2. Just showed my 12 year old daughter a picture of the Pacman, sorry Paceman. Her ‘what on earth is that?’ expression said it all. Further questioning and her answer was something like “not only is it not a Mini but it doesn’t even look like a MINI”

    My view? Not quite ugly but not too far off either, especially that front end.

    Do I think it well sell? Most likely very well. Enough said.

  3. Some great comments there, very funny!

    I used to be a real enthusiast for the first generation new MINI, but they really started to lose the plot in 2006….

    At least it’s not as hideously ugly as the infamous Countryman, but that’s certainly not reason enough to buy one!

    MINI Paceman? MINI Pacman (I like that one!), MINI Pacemaker? Happy Shopper Evoque?

  4. @7
    Not that small though is it, cars weight has gone up with all the deformable structures, airbags etc that go in. The “CITYROVER” esque badging on the back looks a bit naff.

  5. Landcrab visual cueson the front,interior same but different,it says “come on you dicks,buy me it says MINI on the front”.

    @7, 2.8I Capri’s did 0-60 quicker in 1983!

  6. @9, francis brett,

    And even though by ’83 the 2.8 Capri was something of a tarted-up Cortina-based ‘has been’ by then, it had a lot more integrity than this Pac Munter.

  7. I’m the urban Paceman, baby; I’ve got speed
    I’ve got everything I need
    I’m the urban Paceman, baby; I can fly
    I’m a supersonic guy

    I don’t need pleasure
    I don’t feel pain
    If you were to knock me down I’d just get up again
    I’m the urban Paceman, baby; I’m makin’ out
    I’m all about

    I wake up every morning with a smile upon my face
    My natural exuberance spills out all over the place

    I’m the urban Paceman, I’m intelligent and clean
    Know what I mean?
    I’m the urban Paceman, as a lover second to none
    It’s a lot of fun

    I never let my friends down
    I’ve never made a boob
    I’m a glossy magazine, an advert in the tube

    I’m the urban Paceman, baby; here comes the twist–
    I don’t exist

    (With apologies to Neil Innes and the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band)

  8. @6 We both rather like the Juke, although I’m aware quite a few don’t. I think it’s more unique, less ‘so what’ than the Paceman. The Juke maybe ain’t pretty but I think it looks right, attractive in a functional sort of way. The Paceman IS growing on me. I even saw a light coloured Countryman coming towards me today and thought “don’t look so bad”. However, still think the Contryman/Paceman front could be a bit less bluff, blatant, big. The rear of the Paceman should be less anonymous and use some Mini styling cues.

    @5 Happy Shopper Evoque – Yep, I like this!

  9. Sorry but I think it is a bit ugly.It looks a bit overwieght and does not really(in my eyes) look like a Mini.Lovely colour though.

  10. Looks a lot better than the Countryman.

    I thought the lettering looked good when they brought it back on Rovers. Early P6s & P5s had the same spaced look after all.

  11. That’s the first of the recent Minis that I actually quite like but yes, it is slow for all that power. Having said that, surely 7.5 to 60 is actually enough for this type of car…

  12. I quite liked the look initially, it’s certainly more balanced than some of the other Maxis that now bear the Mini name.

    But then I got to the words “Austrian built”. So, we’ll have lots of people buying them in the UK (from showrooms bolted onto BMW dealerships) believing that they’re British, whilst their money actually goes into propping up the Eurozone and fattening the profits of the company that asset stripped, then fatally crippled, the Rover Car Company.

    After 12 years, I’ve just about come to terms with BMW stealing the brand name and milking it for all it’s worth because at least it created UK jobs – even though the profits all go back to Munich.

    But this one is just another foreign car with a name that used to be prefixed by Austin.

    And as such, whilst I don’t have a problem with it being reported about on a site that is meant to focus on British cars, maybe this type of article should have been more clearly marked as a straight copy and paste from a BMW press release?

  13. @17
    What about the fact that the previous owners of Rover, British company BAe bought the company at a knockdown price from the goverment, then asset stripped Rover over 5 years, including selling off most of the current Cowley site for retail development parks……so that BMW have now virtually run out of space to expand the now highly successful Oxford MINI Plant?

  14. @18 – Agreed. BAe’s role was pretty shameful too.

    It was after all they who sold it to BMW in the first place, with the blessing of the Major government. The usual short-term, “not our core competence” approach which saw them out Rover almost as soon as the 5 year lock in expired.

    But that wasn’t my point on this occasion. My point is that another new Mini is built (in the same factory as the Mercedes Benz G-Class) by Magna Steyr in Austria.

    Even if “Plant Oxford” (vomit) can’t be expanded further, is there really nowhere else in the UK it could be assembled?

    I believe there’s quite a lot of spare capacity and unemployed Brits at Longbridge and I’m sure the Chinese would welcome the business.

    This is just another German car.

  15. If it was the size of the Rocketman concept it would encompass the Mini spirit.

    To me it is another cynical ploy by BMW who have noticed that MINI buyers tend not to “upgrade” to their 1/3 serieseses.

    Once the Country/Pacemans have been out a while, they’ll need an even bigger MINI to use as an upgrade path, mirroring their 1-3-5-7 hatch/saloon buying path.

  16. @17,i was of the same opinion once,but BMW saved BAe and Rover in one sitting,BAe actaully asset stripped the company by selling land in an underhand way through one of its land subsidaries.BMW with all the best intentions pumped well over 3 Billion into Rover,the cars,stirling,and management all played a part in its downfall,the weakness of the brand from a couple of decades before didnt help either,as soon as BMW off-loaded Rover (a crying shame)its group profits the following year shot up 53%.The “dowry” often spoken about was a loan consisting of £500 million-just under half payable to Techtronic 2000 LTD right away, the balance two years later and also excess stock of 55,000 cars worth £450 million-P4 all in all recieved nearly £1.2 billion,the so called dowry was to be paid back after three years if the company was sold. BMW gladly did this because it did not want to fall under the auspices of TUPE regulations.

    Its a very sorry state of affairs,i have just read a book charting this and its an eye opener.

  17. I can understand the logic of the Clubman and Countryman derivatives, but all these niche coupe MINIs suffer by not looking distinctive enough, the Paceman just looks like a slightly taller 3 door hatchback, and nowhere near as distinctive as the Evoque or Juke.

    It’ll be interesting to see which models are built at the Nedcar plant, will the Countryman and Paceman be moved there from Steyr?

  18. @21 – I’m sorry, I don’t buy into the “Rover cost BMW a fortune” lie. They ended up with the Mini brand, which as we see they are now grossly exploiting and building overseas, AND they got all of the 4WD technology and knowhow from Land Rover before they flogged it at a nice profit to Ford.

    Which led to an entirely new and highly profitable range of “SUV’s” – the X1/X3/X5 and X6. Which are all in my humble opinion utterly ugly and driven in the UK by morons who should have bought Landies instead.

    Bottom line is – BMW are an opportunistic and sharp toothed German commercial organisation who asset stripped and set adrift the last true British car company. They are absolutely not philanthropic in any way.

    And what we see here is just the latest example of the legacy of that. Not “Made in Britain” as your tagline says Keith, but “Made in Austria”.

  19. @26, DerBrenster,

    BMW didn’t need Land Rover off-roader technology- they had already produced at least one 4wd vehicle (a variant of the 5 Series).

    The BMW SUVs, whist you are right IMHO in saying that they are ugly, were in a different market segment to Land Rover products at the time (excepting the Freelander), as the BMWs are ‘soft roaders’ rather than out-and-out offroaders. Although LR products have moved towards BMWs soft roaders with the Evoque and the ever more on-road biased Range Rover (although that car can still cut the mustard as an off-roader given the right tyre choice). So it was BMW not LR who defined that particular market.

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