Premiered on August 12, 2021 in London, the new MINI Strip sees a co-creation between the UK’s two most iconic brands, MINI and Paul Smith.
The MINI Strip is a custom-made, one-off automotive icon, designed by Paul Smith, that is driven by a threefold concept of simplicity, transparency, and sustainability. Here’s everything you need to know about the MINI Strip, a car of a more sustainable future.
The MINI Strip is all about being simple, transparent, and sustainable
It is a result of looking beyond the obvious
At MINI, an eclectic standpoint is perceived as one of the brand’s most appreciated approaches. With the MINI x Paul Smith collab, this has enabled the world-leading British car brand to dive deeper into this ethos. “For me, the MINI Strip shows in an impressive way that MINI and Paul Smith share the same bold way of thinking about the future in terms of innovation and design – and together we create more. Paul asked essential questions right at the start of the design process with his non-automotive and therefore fresh perspective. We are proud to have developed such a strong character statement together” states Oliver Heilmer, Head of MINI Design.
Its unfinished touches are what give the MINI Strip its aesthetic
The collaboration followed the principle of maximum reduction to produce an automotive icon that is clearly not by the book, but full of cleverly aesthetic touches dubbed as ‘the perfect imperfection’ by the designer himself. One of these is the use of ‘unfinished’ exterior parts that feature no coloured paint, but the use of a thin layer of transparent film. Not only that, on the galvanised steel panels, we also see visible grinding marks that were intentionally left intact right from the factory, pinpointing the car’s identity that drives towards functionality, as well as vigour for everyday use.
“I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity to rethink the iconic MINI. I know and love the existing car, but by respecting the past and looking to the future we have created something very special. I feel very privileged that the MINI team have given me the confidence and freedom to think laterally about the approach to the design of the car. Together I think we have created something truly unique, by going back to basics, reducing things down and stripping the car,” says Paul Smith.
There are contrasting details hidden behind its doors
Owing to the MINI Strip’s central theme of simplicity, its interiors follow suit, with a few unexpected touches. MINI calls it a ‘twinkle in the eye’, while Paul Smith calls it a ‘classic with a twist’. Both catchy phrases convey the same meaning, which underlines a love for details. We see the signature Paul Smith stripes in a five-colour composition together with seat belts in bright orange, as well as transparent knitted mesh door panels and airbags. As it turns out, there is a charming detail to be found from the bold exteriors to contrasting details hidden right inside those doors.
To find out more about the MINI Strip by Paul Smith, visit mini.com