Mini Jumps Four Places to No. 6 Car in U.K. as Revamp Wins Fans

A Mini Cooper SD 5-Door
A Mini Cooper SD 5-door automobile. Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Mini’s revamped car lineup, including a five-door version of its trademark hatchback, is paying dividends in its home market as sales surged 65 percent in May.

Mini’s refreshed core model jumped four places from the previous month to become the sixth best-selling car in the U.K., the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said Thursday in a statement. After introducing the five-door Hatch last last year, Mini far outpaced the total market, with sales rising to 5,239 from 3,184 a year ago.

Robust demand for the Oxford, England-based manufacturer helped push total U.K. car sales to their 39th consecutive month of growth. New car registrations rose 2.4 percent to 198,706 vehicles. Today’s data comes amid a broader upward trend for European car sales, which rose in April for the 20th consecutive month.

“We anticipate a natural leveling out of the overall new car market throughout the remainder of 2015,” said Mike Hawes, SMMT’s chief executive officer.

Slower growth in the rest of the U.K. market may not slow Mini, which is scheduled to introduce a revamped version of the Clubman later this year. The wagon will be bigger than the current generation and more distinct from the hatchback as Mini parent BMW AG focuses the brand on “superhero” models, including the basic hatchback, the Clubman and the Countryman crossover.

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