Mini Strip by Paul Smith: artistic dismantling

With the Mini Strip, Mini and the British fashion designer Paul Smith have taken a sustainable approach to the issue of sustainability in automotive engineering. The one-off has now been presented in London.

The car industry must become more sustainable. With the Mini Strip, which is based on a three-door Mini Cooper SE, Paul Smith and Mini show how the subject of automotive design can be approached in a more sustainable manner.

The art of omission

At the beginning, the electric Mini was completely gutted until only the body shell remained. Starting from this sheet metal skeleton, the elements that the designer considered absolutely necessary were defined, implemented and implemented - always with sustainability in mind. For example, no colored paintwork was used and the body was left in its raw state. Only a thin, transparent paint film protects them from corrosion. The galvanized sheet steel deliberately shows traces of grinding from the factory and thus explicitly identifies the vehicle as a commodity and robust everyday companion.

For further attachments, the 3D printer had to work and reshape recycled plastic. They are attached using clearly visible screws. This shows how they are fixed and also makes dismantling easier for later recycling. The grill panel, the panels on the wheels and the entire roof were made from recycled Plexiglas. This is good for the environment and allows deep insights into the technology. The plastic add-on parts also save weight.

Knitwear, cork and blue paint

Smith only had the bare interior painted blue – that was enough for him. The interior equipment was also economical. The entire dashboard is semi-transparent as a component with a smoked glass look. As the only source of information, the smartphone occupies the position of the central display. An interface with the car provides all information on the phone display. The number of controls has also been reduced. Switches for the power windows and a start-stop button - that's about it.

The seats are covered with knitted fabric, the floor mats are made of recycled rubber. Small cork landscapes extend on the door rails and the dashboard. Smith replaces the door panels with mesh covers. The handle on the door rails is wrapped from climbing rope. The cable routes in the vehicle floor as well as the airbags on the roof edges and in the aluminum steering wheel, which is wrapped with handlebar tape in a bicycle style, are visibly staged.,

Conclusion

The Mini Strip project shows how easy automobile construction could be and how far away current mass production is. It will be interesting to see whether such a radical Mini will ever find its way onto the road.

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