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MINI Roadster concept unveiled

The MINI Roadster concept kicks off the Frankfurt Motor Show is style. It's a rival for the Mazda MX-5 and Audi TT Roadster, and you'll be able to buy one from 2011.

The MINI Roadster concept has been officially unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show. It joins the MINI Coupe Concept that we've already seen, and is set to make it into production some time in 2011.

[See the latest issue of the iMOTOR digital magazine here]

Just like the Coupe, the Roadster is based on existing MINI mechanicals - this time on the Cooper S Convertible. That means a healthy 175hp driving the front wheels. But unlike the Coupe, the Roadster gets a canvas roof which has been engineered to be as light and as simple as possible.

We reckon the production Roadster will look a lot like the concept shown here too, and it could be timed to perfection. When the recession hit, sports car sales pretty much stopped as extravagant purchases couldn't be justified. But BMW reckons that the recession should end just around the time when the Roadster goes on sale. And what better way to reward yourself for scrimping and saving when times are a bit leaner than with a nice posh MINI drop top?

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Richard is a former editor of Carbuyer, as well as sister site DrivingElectric.com, and he's now Deputy Editor at Auto Express. Having spent a decade working in the automotive industry, he understands exactly what makes new car buyers tick.

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