Fashion designer Paul Smith has revealed a stripped down Mini Cooper SE with a key focus on sustainability.
Minimalism seems to be a popular theme nowadays, and automobile interiors are no exception. We’ve seen Tesla and Mercedes interiors featuring sleek center-mounted screens, and Rolls-Royce’s post-opulence aesthetic emphasizing ergonomics and simplicity. With the Mini Strip Concept, British fashion designer Paul Smith shares with the world his own unique take on minimalism.
The Mini Strip Concept is essentially a stripped down version of the two-door Cooper SE (known as the Mini Electric in the US market). Many of the exterior metal design elements have been switched out for recycled plastic, the screws are visible, and some of the marks from the factory have been preserved. Furthermore, the outer body of the vehicle is unpainted save for a transparent coating added to keep the car simple while also looking novel and futuristic.
Even with these changes, the exterior is very much recognizable as a Cooper SE. However, step inside and the changes are much more dramatic.
The steering wheel and much of the interior panels have been completely stripped away, revealing the metal frame and even parts of the chassis. The dashboard is made of semi-transparent smoked glass rather than the multi-part design found in most Mini models. In the center, the infotainment screen has been removed. Instead, Mini explains the circular frame can now be a place to mount your smartphone. The rest of the interior is decorated with cork and other sustainable materials.
While Mini will not be building a production version of the Strip Concept, we can expect to see the materials be available in future models.
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Image via Mini