Those of us in the car reviewing business are accustomed to launches being accompanied by a touch of fanfare, like when the 2014 Mercedes S-Class drove out of a 787 in a German blimp hangar, or when Fiat brought out Romanian supermodel Catrinel Menghia, star of their famously sexy commercials for the Fiat 500 Abarth — in character — who proceeded to slap a photographer as she did in one of the commercials (per the photographer’s request, of course).
Such was the case at this week’s global first drive program for the 2015 Mini Cooper in Puerto Rico, which started out innocently enough; balmy beachfront setting, 2015 Mini Cooper staged on a floating dock, smiling (and very talented) singer saunters out to warm up the crowd. I whip out my phone to record an isn’t-this-cute video to send to family and friends, and then, as you’ll see, it becomes something of a spectacle.
While it all seems to have gone off without a hitch, we wondered why the Cooper staged on the floating dock didn’t drive up and join the other two to complete the red, white, and blue Cooper trifecta on the beach. Apparently, that was part of the plan, but the churning waters from the wave runners and jet pack waterskis jostled and buckled the dock so much that, as the driver advanced toward the beach, it was unclear to him if the dock was even still attached. Wisely, he stayed back on the part of the dock that was clearly afloat, lest the Mini song and dance become an unintentional reenactment of a Fiat ad in which Fiat 500s dive into the ocean and drive onto the beach.
For his part, the driver of the wayward Cooper seems to play along as he bobs up and down on the thrashing dock, blinking his lights to the music — or is he sending a distress signal? — and no one seems to be any the wiser.
- Mini Cooper
- Catrinel Menghia