Being a more ‘maxi’ mini is no bad thing; it’s more the perception of what constitutes ‘premium'.
THAT the Mini Clubman even made it to COTY is a feat in itself, largely because some weren’t initially convinced of its eligibility. Based on the F55/F56 Mini family, the second generation appears to be essentially a stretched version of cars in the existing Mini range.
But as well as extra length and wheelbase the Clubman is also some 70mm wider than those other Minis, necessitating a unique interior treatment. So the new Clubman is sufficiently different to any Mini before it.
From the outset that earnt it praise from judges. The extra millimetres translate into useful interior space, especially in the rear. The Clubman is the first Mini that could realistically be used to carry more than two adults in respectable comfort.
Practicality isn’t usually the highlight of a Mini, but it’s a standout of the Clubman, with the exception of the barn doors at the rear; they not only make it a double motion to open the boot but also impact rear vision.