Peter Schwarzenbauer, the boss of Mini, in 2015 started talking about a refocus of the brand around five core models or pillars.
Since he made those comments, we’ve already seen four of those pillars introduced. They include latest versions of the Hardtop (and Hardtop 4 Door), Convertible, Clubman and Countryman.
There’s been a lot of speculation on what the fifth pillar will be, with reports suggesting either a sports car, spurred on by the unveiling of 2014’s Superleggera Vision concept, or perhaps a sedan.
However, senior Mini executive Sebastian Mackensen has now revealed to Automotive News (subscription required) that an electric Mini confirmed to be arriving in 2019 will be the brand’s fifth and final pillar.
Mackensen didn’t say what form the electric Mini will take, although the vehicle is widely expected to be based on the core Hardtop model.
Mini has already tested the waters with an electric Hardtop. Some readers will recall the brand leased a Hardtop-based Mini E electric car on a trial basis late last decade. Mini used the vehicle to gather feedback as well as lay the groundwork for more widespread adoption of electric propulsion.