Mini’s new concept, the Concept Aceman, has been popping up at various events in an effort to gain traction with the public. Its next stop is this year’s gamescom in Cologne, of which Mini is the premiere sponsor.

The Concept Aceman, if produced, would be an all-electric model that bridges the gap between the Cooper and Countryman models. Head of the MINI Brand Stefanie Wurst noted at its unveiling that Mini’s goals for the Concept Aceman are “an electrified go-kart feel, an immersive digital experience, and a strong focus on a minimal environmental footprint.” Part of that immersive digital experience are the Aceman’s Experience Modes: personal, pop-up vivid. For gamescom, they’ve added another Experience Mode–Pokémon. 

Per Mini, an animation of the character Pikachu “extends across the dashboard, front doors and apron projection. In the animated loop, the Poké Ball first appears in the OLED display and moves, then opens in a blue glow that moves impressively from the OLED display via the dashboard and the light bar of the doors as well as the apron projection through the vehicle interior. In another loop, Pikachu appears in the display at the start. The famous electric Pokémon launches a bright yellow lightning attack that also travels through the vehicle via the interior doors as well as the apron projection.” Why Pikachu? The small yellow character is fast, nimble, has electric powers, and packs a lot of punch. Sound familiar?

While originally an anime that started in the late 90s, Pokémon has expanded to various other media formats to include interactive video games, so it dovetails nicely with gamescom. Stefanie Wurst noted, “A major feature of MINI is the positive and future-oriented approach to individual mobility as well as the distinctive design of the vehicles. Gamification will play an increasingly important role in the MINI of the future and offer a unique experience for our customers. In cooperation with Pokémon, the shared joy of the franchise brings two iconic characters that are a perfect match, together with millions of fans. This is how we reach a whole new target group at gamescom 2022, as an event for modern fandom, gaming and pop culture.”

The Aceman’s appearance at gamescom isn’t the only news and Mini’s new concept. Mini is also launching the Miniverse, a digital world where the public can interact with the Aceman. Mini states, “Various excitingly designed digital city districts as well as numerous interaction options and gaming elements invite you to explore the Mini Concept Aceman. The virtual world can be accessed simply via URL on the smartphone and on the desktop, without having to install anything else. Varied multiplayer games offer Mini fans the opportunity to meet up on the online platform.”

BMW has its metaverse Joytopia,Mini is releasing the Miniverse, and the Head of Development at BMW M is Dirk Häcker. I think I see where this is going…—Mike Bevels

[Images courtesy of Mini.]




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