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It looks like MINI’s fast paced range expansion is about to be shot down, with a high-ranking MINI USA executive telling Edmunds that some of the niche variants won’t be up for renewal come the next generation models. Now that’s a surprise. Or is it?

The German-owned British brand once known for having a great line-up of one now flaunts no less than seven models, which apart from the Hatch and Countryman are each planted in tiny niche markets with not a lot of room to breathe, let alone prosper.

Getting enough demand to sustain both the exceedingly similar Convertible and Roadster models have always been questionable, and the latest Paceman, a two-door variant of the Countryman, itself a bigger four-door MINI hatchback, is already seen as a step too far for some. Then there’s the ever popular Clubman.

Offering endless variants to meet a wider range of customer needs is a noble effort, but ultimately it’s still a business with ends to meet. We’ve already seen the signs of MINI leaving its iconic quirkiness behind for a more conventional future. Now is the brand growing up too fast for its own good, or is a model variation backtrack exactly what it needs? Tell us in the comments section below.