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No foolin': Mini claims DNA of corporate cousin Rolls

Automotive News reports on a new-edition Mini Cooper inspired by sister brand Rolls-Royce.

Mini inspired by Rolls-Royce
The "Mini inspired by Goodwood" debuts in Shanghai.
Mini inspired by Rolls-Royce
The 'Mini inspired by Goodwood' debuts in Shanghai. Mini

Rolls-Royces are very big, very luxurious, and very expensive.

Minis are small, cute, and far less expensive.

But both brands are owned by BMW, so maybe it was inevitable that BMW would offer the "Mini inspired by Goodwood," a limited-edition car that debuts this week at the Shanghai auto show.

Mini plans to make 1,000 Cooper hardtops "inspired" by the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars development and design center in Goodwood, England.

Actually, we double-checked the date of the press release because BMW is notorious for April Fools' Day announcements. This year's spoof was a British royal-wedding edition of the M3. BMW once touted a new Canine Repellent Alloy Protection System known as CRAP.

But the Mini-Rolls is no joke. The special-edition Mini uses Rolls-Royce colors and materials, including an interior shade called cornsilk and a black metallic exterior. Other features include walnut burr wood, black nappa leather, piano-black finishes on the steering wheel buttons, and fancy trim on other controls. But no Flying Lady hood ornament.

Production will begin early in 2012 at Mini's factory in Oxford, England. Mini isn't saying how many will come to the United States or what the price will be.

(Source: Automotive News)