Timely and timeless framing of the new MINI Cooper

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review

1 Citationer (Scopus)
41 Downloads (Pure)


This paper presents an exemplary case in the car industry: the design of the new MINI Cooper, released in 2001. Through a semi-structured interview with design expert Frank Stephenson and the use of secondary data, we examine how an expert designer considers time to design a car relevant across decades. We find that the framing of the new MINI Cooper integrates both timely and timeless aspects. In the process, Frank Stephenson draws values, frames and working principles from the present portfolio and competing products to create a succession of product generation.

We use this case to argue for the centrality of framing time when striving to create seminal, long-lasting designs. The study identifies ‘the framing of time’ as a main expertise in the car industry. Therefore, this paper answers scholars' calls for more research on how outstanding designers work to consider time (Cross, 2004).
TidsskriftDesign Studies
StatusUdgivet - sep. 2022


  • automotive design
  • case study
  • design expertise
  • framing
  • time


Dyk ned i forskningsemnerne om 'Timely and timeless framing of the new MINI Cooper'. Sammen danner de et unikt fingeraftryk.