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BMW’s Mini brand to skip upcoming Detroit auto show

Michael Martinez
The Detroit News

The BMW Group’s Mini brand will skip the 2016 North American International Auto Show as well as the Geneva Auto Show, the company said Wednesday.

It joins Jaguar Land Rover in passing up on Detroit’s January show.

“This decision reflects Mini’s new product and brand strategy, which was presented to the public on June 24, 2015,” a Mini USA spokeswoman said in a statement. “Part of the new brand strategy is focusing on selected auto shows and an increased engagement with events that increase Mini’s access to other relevant target groups.”

Max Muncey, public relations manager for NAIAS, confirmed Mini won’t be part of the show and said BMW will expand their exhibit space to include the spot Mini would have occupied.

“Given their product cycle, the stars didn’t align for them to participate,” Muncey said. “Mini’s been a great partner and we’d love to have them back in future years. It just happened this year that they don’t have that worldwide news to break.”

At last year’s Detroit show, Mini unveiled its 2015 John Cooper Works Hardtop with a 2-liter, 4-cylinder turbo engine that gets 228 horsepower and a 5.9 second zero-to-60 time.

Last month, Jaguar Land Rover said it would skip NAIAS to concentrate on other shows that more align with its marketing efforts.

This isn’t the first time Jaguar Land Rover has opted out of the Detroit auto show. The automaker took a one-year hiatus in 2012 — the year the Range Rover Evoque won the “North American International Auto Show Truck of the Year.”

This year, about 75 percent of the show floor will be all-new or significantly redesigned for the more than 40 expected worldwide vehicle unveilings. The 2016 Detroit auto show is open to the public from Jan. 16-Jan. 26.

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