Product was the hot topic at Mini’s make meeting Saturday, with dealers and the manufacturer analyzing the performance of the Clubman and awaiting the new Countryman and Cooper convertible.
“There were comments on how the Clubman is doing,” said Michael Vadasz, chairman of Mini’s dealer council and general manager at Otto’s Mini in Exton, Pa. “I think we can all agree the Clubman is doing pretty well for us right now.”
There are more orders on the vehicle, which launched earlier this year, than there are vehicles in stock, Vadasz continued.
Many orders have been customized, he said, “which is what Mini is all about, but of course, we like to sell cars in stock, too. And, that is taking place.”
Mini sold 1,695 Clubmans in the first quarter, including 1,037 units in March. It was the only vehicle in Mini's lineup to post a gain in March. Mini's overall U.S. sales fell 15 percent to 10,839 vehicles during the first quarter.
David Duncan, vice president of Mini of the Americas, said dealers are most excited about the Clubman’s success because it’s the first car that takes Mini from the small to compact car segment.
“We see that as a fast growing segment, so having an entry in there gives us that opportunity,” Duncan said. “And then when you look at the car itself, it’s got a premiumness about it that really takes us to the next level and allows us to compete against brands that we weren’t typically competing against.”
Duncan said he and the dealers also discussed the Cooper convertible, which is currently launching. “They’re starting to roll out of the ports today, so they should be in the dealerships very shortly,” he said.
Mini is in a “young state” when it comes to product, Duncan said.
“Our two-door hardtop is only 2 years old. Our four-door hardtop is only 1 year old. We just launched a Clubman the beginning of this year, and we’re about to launch a new convertible. We’re in a very good place when it comes to product,” he said.
Vadasz added that with the Countryman, “we’re going to have a very, very fresh product lineup. That will kind of complete our current lineup for what the future of the brand is.”