THE first plug-in hybrid MINI will be on the road next year as part of an all-new Countryman range of beefed up hatches.
With a theoretical fuel figure of 134.5mpg, a zero emission range of up to 25 miles and a CO2 rating of 49g/km the plug-in Countryman will have the potential to be the most economical MINI to date.
It will be the eco-champion of the new Countryman line up which is due for release in February.
While an on-sale date and prices for the petrol-electric plug-in have still to be announced, the mainstream models will cost from Â£22,465 - a hefty increase of some Â£5,000 over the current model.
All-wheel-drive versions will be priced from £23,555 and diesels from £24,425.
Like the latest MINI hatch, the new Countryman is significantly bigger than before with more room inside and in the boot, which now ranges from 450 to 1,309 litres - an increase in cargo capacity of more than 30 per cent.
The new model also has added practical features including a slide-out cushioned platform which MINI is calling the Picnic Bench and can seat two people.
Interior kit sees the new Countryman coming with a touchscreen central display while sat nav, Bluetooth and automatic emergency assistance are standard across the range.
It is the first time MINI has used touchscreen technology on any of its models and the new display uses an optional 8.5-inch panel. A smaller 6.5-inch screen is regular fit on the new Countryman.
MINI's new engines feature in the Clubman with power outputs ranging from 136 to 192bhp. The quickest is the Cooper S ALL4 auto with a 0 to 60 acceleration of 7.2 seconds and the most economical conventional powertrain is the manual diesel which is rated at 64.2mpg with emissions of 113g/km.
As well as the Picnic Bench option the new Countryman can be fitted with an electric, remote control tailgate.
Other options include an advanced connectivity system which features a ‘Find Mate' device that electronically tags personal belongings allowing them to be tracked wirelessly if mislaid.