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 |  Sep 27 2010, 7:33 AM


MINI will officially debut the new Countryman WRC rally car at the Paris Auto Show later this week. A selection of spy photos and videos of the car have already surfaced online, but MINI has been quick to clarify that the car was not wearing its official WRC bodywork.

Joining the WRC car will be a selection of Euro-market MINIs including the world premiere of the Cooper D Convertible and the One D Clubman. The Cooper D Convertible is the first diesel MINI to get the drop-top option, while the entry-level One D Clubman adds a new budget level to the Clubman range with an impressive 60-mpg rating (On the EU test cycle).

These MINI models will be joined on stage by the new MINI Scooter E Concept models.

For complete coverage of the MINI debuts and all the new models, check back for live updates from the Paris Auto Show starting Thursday, September 30th.

Official release after the jump:

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 |  Jun 29 2010, 9:23 AM

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MINI has just officially taken the wraps off its refreshed 2011 lineup of models and while we’re sure the MINI-faithful will debate the changes for months and years to come, were not sure most folks will notice the difference. It’s a good think the original design of the car is timeless.

Notable updates include the new ducts on the front of the Cooper S and John Cooper Works models, as well as LED tail lights on all MINIs. A new option for 2011 are the black reflector headlamps from the 50th anniversary Camden model. Slight changes to the bumpers on all models help the cars meet new pedestrian protection requirements. New wheel designs and paint finishes will also be offered. In particular, we love some of the options shown for the JCW models.

More notable updates can be found in the cabin, with an optional LCD screen located inside the ridiculously huge speedometer. This screen scan show video from an iPod or other device.

As for what’s under the hood, MINI announced several months ago a new 122-hp base engine for Cooper models, while the Cooper S gets just over 180-hp. Two new 1.6-liter diesel engines are also offered in Europe, making 90-hp and 159 ft-lbs of torque in MINI One D form, or 112-hp and 199 ft-lbs of torque in Cooper D form. Both are touted to get almost 62 mpg on the European test cycle. In addition, MINI has added one new model to the range, a MINI Cooper D Convertible.

MINI is expected to announce its 2011 lineup changes in the U.S. shortly, with, as we’ve reported, the more powerful engines set to join the lineup this year.

GALLERY: 2011 MINI Lineup

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Official release after the jump:

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