A fresh report out of the United Kingdom claims the next-generation Mini hatchback will shrink while the Clubman could be transformed into a fully fledged SUV.

According to Autocar, Oliver Heilmer, head of Mini design, hinted the next-generation Clubman could be turned into an SUV to put some distance between it and the Countryman.

He also revealed the BMW-backed firm was working hard to improve the next-gen hatch’s space efficiency.

“For future architecture, we’re having weekly discussions to improve interior space and reduce the car’s footprint. But it’s not solved yet. Maybe next year,” he said, before adding development costs and crash performance were big issues.

“The footprint is most crucial with the hatch. Size is less of a problem with the other models. I want each model to be the smallest in the segment, or visually the smallest. But small may not be helpful for sales,” Heilmer said, further driving speculation about a potentially larger Clubman.