British car manufacturer Mini, now owned by BMW, is poised to enter the fleet market with the launch of its latest lower medium five-door model, according to BusinessCar magazine.
Mini is far more popular in the retail segment of the market, but the roll-out of the new model could see Mini's being used in the fleet sector as well, says Chris Brownridge, Mini's UK director and former fleet boss of parent firm BMW.
In the not so distant future, he says, production on other models will further extend Mini's share of the fleet market. Its next generation five-door Clubman model, for instance, will pave the way for BMW to enter the one-series Golf segment, Brownridge added.
Mini's trim Business Edition for targeting fleets, which is currently only available with the Mini Countryman, is likely to be added to the line-up of next generation models when they arrive.
With the Mini Countryman, BMW already has a specific business edition model, Brownridge says, adding that the Countryman has been a very successful edition to its portfolio. The company expects to see further achievements on future models of Mini's as well.
There are some customers who want a Mini with extra space and the comfort of five doors, yet do not want the vehicle to be as large as the Countryman, Dietmar Zimmerhackl, senior vice president Mini Product Line told Autoexpress.
The five-door hatchback Mini is expected to be up for grabs in summer 2014.
See how we could save you money on your next Mini lease.
Image: 360b / Shutterstock.com