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Mini has taken sustainability a bit too far with the bespoke Mini Strip

It looks good, though.

I have always wondered what if someone was to buy a car bar the usual pain finish. Simply put, a car with no paint on it, just the materials it’s made from, standing tall. I have always imagined a car like that, but thanks to Paul Smith and Mini, that imagination of mine is now a reality. Enter the bespoke Mini Strip.

Having teamed up with British fashion designer Paul Smith, Mini has created something that emphasizes on the maker’s sustainability ambitions, as the theme itself is “Simplicity, Transparency, Sustainability”. Designer Paul Smith says, “Together, I think we have created something truly unique, by going back to basics, reducing things down, and stripping the car.”

As the name suggests, everything on this Mini is down to the bare minimum, as you don’t get the production-spec paint finish, just a coat of clear to prevent rust, something that Mini says gives “a minimalist, high-class design with a fresh and unconventional appeal”.

Elsewhere, you have the black plastic body trim, but this time, it is 3D-printed using recycled plastic. The grille is made from recycled perspex to save even more weight, and so are the aerodynamically optimized wheel covers and the panoramic sunroof. On the inside, you get a different experience altogether.

Almost everything seems to be in the garbage as you’re left with the bare metal body shell and a bright-blue paint finish. The dashboard which would normally consist of all the toggles and screens, now has a single-piece, semi-transparent panel, and the area where the speedometer would usually be fitted is now reserved for your smartphone to become the “media control center” after being connected automatically.

Your typical leather and chrome are also absent, and replacing them is a knitted fabric (for seats) that’s entirely recyclable, with the floor mats too, being made using recycled rubber. The dashboard top, door panels, all are finished in recycled cork which the maker says “could provide a substitute for foamed plastics in future”.

Rounding up the interior is the airbag which is visible via the mesh center of the steering wheel, whereas climbing rope is used in place of door handles. Also, airbags on the roof + the wiring harness, all are visible to you know, show-off, and draw attention too. However, unfortunately, Mini won’t proceed ahead with its production, so we can only enjoy the car with help from some images.

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Chirag Khanna

I can look at the headlights of a car and can tell which car it is. I am an automobile and motorsports (specializes in F1) geek, for starters. For the main-course, I write.

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