MINI Specialist Cars MINI

26 November 2012

MINI at LA Auto Show.

MINI at the Los Angeles Auto Show 2012.

The MINI Paceman is breathing new life into the premium compact segment as the first Sports Activity Coupé in its class. The latest MINI model is set to celebrate its North American premiere in the technology, design and entertainment hot spot of Los Angeles, with the extrovert four-seater’s US debut forming the centrepiece of the MINI stand at this year’s Los Angeles Auto Show, which runs from 30 November to 9 December 2012. Alongside the new addition to the brand’s line-up, MINI is also treating its Californian audience to an array of its other current models and products.

The arrival of the brand’s seventh model heralds the beginning of another new chapter in the growth of the British premium automaker. A sustained period of success in the USA has made a considerable contribution to the brand’s rude health. Indeed, the US has been MINI’s most important single market for a number of years now. The brand’s most recent growth statistics have been boosted by the popularity of the MINI Countryman which, as the first MINI with four doors and a large tailgate, has won over new target groups to the brand. As well as its extra practicality, the Countryman mimics its stablemates in serving up the driving fun for which MINI is renowned. And now a detailed model update shines the spotlight even more brightly on the premium interior of all MINI Countryman variants. The MINI Countryman is one of the models on display at the Los Angeles Auto Show.

MINI Paceman: unique looks, unmistakable driving fun.

With its two doors and large tailgate, the MINI Paceman brings an air of sporting elegance and individualism to the premium compact segment. It is the second MINI model (after the Countryman) with an exterior length exceeding four metres and the option of ALL4 all-wheel drive. The exterior design of the MINI Paceman projects a clear expression of this fresh new sportiness, individuality and versatility. Powerful proportions and dynamically stretched lines provide a window into the car’s agile driving characteristics. Inside, the passengers in the two individual rear seats also enjoy generous levels of space, outstanding lateral support and impressive comfort in a lounge ambience.
Two four-cylinder petrol engines will be available from the launch of the MINI Paceman in the USA. Their combination of considerable brawn and extensive MINIMALISM technology is a recipe for sports performance and exceptionally low fuel consumption. The powerplant under the skin of the MINI Cooper Paceman generates peak output of 121 hp, while the MINI Cooper S Paceman boasts a turbocharged engine producing 181 hp. The two units channel their power to the front wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox as standard; a six-speed automatic is optional for both model variants. The MINI Cooper S Paceman can also be ordered as an option with ALL4 all-wheel drive.

Continuing growth, inimitable style: the MINI model family.

The constant expansion of the MINI model range has fuelled the brand’s growth around the world. The MINI family now comprises seven vehicle types, each of which adds its own particular flavour to the familiar MINI driving fun. This broader appeal has brought MINI cars onto the radar of new target groups.

The brand’s successful assault on the US market began in 2002 with the classical MINI Hatch. The addition to the range of the MINI Convertible and MINI Clubman was followed by the arrival of the MINI Countryman – the first MINI model to feature four doors and a large tailgate. Since then the MINI Coupé and MINI Roadster have both swelled the MINI ranks, with the youngest member of brand’s family – the MINI Paceman – being unveiled at the 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show.

First held in 1907, the LA event represents the climax of the international car show calendar and offers a fascinating look ahead to the trends of the upcoming season. Automotive manufacturers and suppliers from around the world will present their latest models and products at the Los Angeles Convention Center alongside futuristic studies and concept cars.


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16 November 2012



A team of gym members from East Sussex have today smashed two Guinness World Records™ for the number of people inside both a classic Mini and a 2012 MINI.

28 flexible ladies crammed their way into the MINI Hatch at Potters Fields Park, London as part of the eighth annual Guinness World Records day. The team broke their own previous record of 27 people, which they set in Eastbourne last year.

The ladies made full use of every inch of space available in the MINI, including the dashboard, the footwells and they even managed to squeeze four people in the boot.

As soon as they celebrated their first record the ladies dashed off to the ITV studios to attempt the second record live on This Morning, where by squeezing a staggering 23 ladies into a classic Mini, they managed to beat the previous record by two people.

Today more than 400,000 people around the world are taking part in record-breaking events for the eighth annual Guinness World Records Day, which commemorates the day in 2004 when Guinness World Records became the world’s best-selling copyright book.

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13 November 2012

The MINI John Cooper Works GP.

Gearing up for its world debut: The MINI John Cooper Works GP.

A limited-edition road car with race track-developed technology, the MINI John Cooper Works GP is the sportiest and fastest production model ever built under the nameplate of this British premium brand. It will make its world debut at the Paris Motor Show (29 September to 4 October 2012), and production of a limited edition of just 2,000 units will start later this year. Extensively equipped with John Cooper Works motor sport technology, this two-seater boasts outstanding performance to match its distinctive looks. An extensively modified four-cylinder turbo engine capable of developing 160 kW/ 218 hp, adjustable coilover suspension, an extra-powerful sports brake system and model-specific alloy wheels and sports tyres ensure superb handling and outstanding driving enjoyment. The standard-fitted high-traction sports tyres offer awesome cornering grip, impeccable braking response and impressive performance. And to top it all off, with a DIN unladen weight of 1,160 kilograms, the MINI John Cooper Works GP is one of the lightest sports cars in its class.The balance between the engine, the suspension and the aerodynamics was fine-tuned during intensive testing on the Nürburgring North Loop (the old grand prix circuit), where the MINI John Cooper Works GP promptly clocked up a best lap time of 8:23 minutes – streets ahead of many big-name sports cars from higher segments. With its 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) sprint time of 6.3 seconds and a top speed of 242 km/h (150 mph), the GP brings an authentic race car feel to everyday driving.

The MINI John Cooper Works GP is the latest incarnation of a racing heritage that dates back more than 50 years, to when the legendary sports car designer John Cooper developed a version of the classic Mini that was to become the ultimate fun-to-drive road machine. This car also carved out a highly successful career in motor sport, where it was three-times winner of the Monte Carlo Rally. The modern-day MINI has continued this tradition: the John Cooper Works products and models, with their close links to the British-built premium small car, continue to be a byword for top-class motor sport engineering. The most impressive incarnation to date of this shared passion for motor sport was the 2006 MINI Cooper S with John Cooper Works GP Tuning Kit. That model, too, was built in a limited edition of 2,000 units, and soon became a coveted collector’s item.

The MINI John Cooper Works GP is another stunning example of the time-tested principle of taking the natural sporty DNA of the MINI to a new level by combining it with a whole string of features taken straight from the race track. With this elite sporting machine, the John Cooper Works brand, now a sub-brand of MINI, has raised the stakes yet again – the new model has shaved a whole 18 seconds off its predecessor’s best lap time during testing on the Nürburgring North Loop. This new best time reflects continuous advances in engineering, which have been tuned to the highest performance standards by John Cooper Works.

The responsive power and excellent revving ability of the MINI John Cooper Works GP’s 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine are reflected in dazzling performance figures. This zesty character is down to a cutting-edge engineering package and extensive technology transfers from the world of motor sport. Among the highlights are the aluminium cylinder block and bearing mounts, reinforced pistons, sturdier cylinder head, low-weight crankshafts and sodium-filled exhaust valves. Twin-scroll turbocharging produces high boost pressure, and direct petrol injection ensures precisely controlled fuel supply, while fully variable valve control, based on the BMW Group’s VALVETRONIC technology, helps to maximise engine responsiveness and efficiency.

The state-of-the-art powerplant responds instantly to throttle commands and delivers maximum torque of 260 Newton metres from just 1,750 rpm. For extra punch when accelerating, peak torque can be increased for short periods to 280 Nm from 2,000 rpm, thanks to the overboost function. Maximum power of 160 kW/218 hp is delivered at 6,000 rpm. It is transferred to the wheels via a six-speed manual transmission, which is precisely matched to the performance characteristics of the engine.

The astonishing torque gives the MINI John Cooper Works GP a 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) time of 6.3 seconds. Mid-range acceleration is impressive too, with an 80 to 120 km/h (50–75 mph) time in fifth gear of just 5.9 seconds. Top speed is 242 km/h (150 mph). The turbocharged engine also delivers outstanding efficiency. This is further enhanced by MINIMALISM features which keep the average EU test cycle consumption of the MINI John Cooper Works GP down to 7.1 litres/100 km (39.8 mpg imp), corresponding to CO2 emissions of 165 grams per kilometre.

The MINI John Cooper Works GP’s exclusive suspension technology, too, relies heavily on motor sport. For the first time on a MINI, it features an individually adjustable coilover suspension, which allows ride height to be lowered by up to 20 millimetres. Among other things, this means the suspension set-up can be fine-tuned to different circuit conditions whenever the MINI goes out onto the track.

The front shock absorbers are mounted upside down in the tube, with the piston rod pointing down, in order to increase longitudinal and lateral stiffness.

The front camber has been increased compared with the regular MINI John Cooper Works, so that the performance potential of the sports tyres – which differ significantly from road tyres – can be used to full effect, without the penalties of early understeer, inevitably leading to increased tyre wear. Other features include reduced front-wheel toe-in and increased rear camber, which alters the forward weight transfer so as to give more speed and more neutral steering when driving close to the limit. At the same time, the reduced toe-in improves agility and cornering confidence.

Outstanding braking performance is provided by the MINI John Cooper Works GP’s racing-derived sports brake system, featuring six-piston fixed-calliper disc brakes, vented at the front. The front discs are 330 millimetres in diameter and 25 millimetres thick, with 280 x 10 mm discs at the rear. The low-weight 17-inch alloy wheels, again exclusive to the MINI John Cooper Works GP, run on high-traction 215/40 R17 sports tyres. Optionally, standard-size 205/45 R17 tyres are available on the same wheels, offering a good sporty balance between performance and good handling in wet or low-temperature conditions. The 7.5 x 17 H2 ET45 wheels, which were specially developed for the MINI John Cooper Works GP, are derived from the MINI Challenge race car, and feature lightweight contours on flow-formed rims.

On the MINI John Cooper Works GP, the DSC Dynamic Stability Control is not combined with DTC, as would normally be the case, but with a special GP racing mode. Under hard driving, the driver may often not want ASC engine power reduction cutting in, so instead this system offers just ASC braking, based on the EDLC (Electronic Differential Lock Control) subfunction. The EDLC software brakes the wheel on the inside of the turn, and the drive power that would otherwise be lost at this wheel is redirected to the outer wheel, where the contact forces are greater.

With its conspicuous and distinctive appearance, the MINI John Cooper Works GP is upfront about its performance credentials right from the word go. The body is painted in the exclusive colour Thunder Grey metallic, with red for the edging round the bonnet opening as well as for the exterior mirror caps and the side air intakes in the front apron. John Cooper Works insignia appear on the lower air intake and the tailgate. The final proof of identity is provided by “GP”-badged side stripes running between the front and rear wheel arches. The standard specification of the MINI John Cooper Works GP includes xenon headlights in black shells, foglamps, sun protection glazing, air conditioning, DSC with special GP mode, and a Sport button. The aerodynamic body parts like the large front and rear aprons, striking side sills and model-specific roof spoiler not only add to the eye-catching appearance but also play an important part in controlling air flow. The rear diffusor, together with the underside panelling and the roof-edge spoiler, reduce lift forces at the rear axle by 90 per cent, for impeccable handling control even under high-speed cornering and when driving at or near the limit.

A six per cent reduction in drag is reflected in improved fuel economy and a higher top speed. The air flow round the front of the car has been significantly improved with the help of a large spoiler and full aerodynamic shielding of the engine compartment underside. This aerodynamic shield not only reduces drag and front axle lift, but also improves air flow through the engine compartment. Slits in the centre of the shield help to expel air from the intercooler. The slits are situated in an area of fast air flow and high vacuum force, so that the air is literally sucked out of the engine compartment, thereby improving the performance of the intercooler.

The exciting race car feel is raised a further notch by an interior ambience which, partly due to the absence of a rear seat bench, is focused entirely on the needs of the driver and “co-driver”, both of whom can savour the performance of the MINI John Cooper Works GP to the full thanks to Recaro sports seats with special GP stitching. A cargo guard prevents items from sliding forward out of the luggage compartment in sporty driving situations. The John Cooper Works thick-rimmed leather steering wheel and the gearshift knob with chrome ring and red shift diagram help give the driver a more direct feel for the car. Finally, with features like the anthracite roof liner, the piano black interior surfaces and door grips, and the anthracite rev counter and speedometer dials, this interior also helps to improve the driver’s concentration and focus on the road.

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12 November 2012

The MINI Paceman.

Cutting a swathe through the urban jungle. The MINI Paceman.

The MINI brand is once again combining the expansion of its model range with a foray into a new vehicle class. Indeed, the MINI Paceman is the first Sports Activity Coupé in the premium small and compact segment. Its powerful, dynamically stretched coupé lines and hallmark MINI go-kart feeling team up with the exclusive ambience of its variable-usage interior to make the MINI Paceman a pioneer in the urban environment ‑ and one whose character is vividly imbued with the innovative and inimitable style of the British premium brand. With its two doors and large tailgate, plus two full-size individual rear seats, the seventh model in the MINI family complements the elegant sportiness of its proportions with a new rendering of the familiar MINI interior.

Design: powerful stature, sporty and elegant coupé lines.

The innovative concept of a compact Sports Activity Coupé is expressed in an exterior design that faithfully embodies the MINI Paceman’s multifaceted driving properties within the template of the established MINI design language. The front end exudes muscularity and presence, while dynamically sweeping lines and powerfully curved surfaces lace the flanks of the car with sporting elegance. The coupé-style roof, swooping downwards towards the rear, sits almost seamlessly atop the passenger compartment and its distinctive contours fit neatly into the coupé mould. The most eye-catching new feature of the rear end are the taillights which, in a first for MINI, feature a horizontal design.

Interior: exclusive ambience, impressive variability.

The MINI Paceman has been designed squarely as a four-seater. Sports seats for the driver and front passenger are included as standard, and the pair of individual seats in the rear offer impressive shoulder room and headroom, outstanding lateral support and exceptional comfort. The side window controls, meanwhile, are integrated into the prominently three-dimensional door trim. The high-opening tailgate of the MINI Paceman and its low boot sill allow the luggage area to be accessed in comfort. Load capacity stands at 330 litres, increasing to 1,080 litres when the rear seat backrests are folded down.

The drivetrain: powerful engines,optional ALL4 all-wheel-drive system.

The MINI Paceman is available in four powerful and efficient petrol and diesel variants from launch, ranging from the MINI Cooper D Paceman (82 kW/112 hp) and MINI Cooper Paceman (90 kW/122 hp) to the MINI Cooper SD Paceman (105 kW/143 hp) and MINI Cooper S Paceman (135 kW/184 hp). Plans are in place to add a MINI John Cooper Works Paceman variant to the range in due course.
The Sports Activity Coupé is the second model – after the MINI Countryman –which customers can order with the ALL4 all-wheel-drive system as an option.

The chassis: a new take on the go-kart feeling.

The MINI Paceman’s cutting-edge chassis ‑ consisting of a MacPherson spring strut front axle and forged cross members in tandem with a multi-link rear axle ‑ underpins its hallmark MINI agility. The new model comes as standard with lowered sports suspension and DSC (Dynamic Stability Control). Electric Power Steering with standard Servotronic function likewise enhances the ever-present go-kart feeling on board the MINI Paceman.

Comprehensive safety equipment and high-quality comfort-enhancing features.

The high torsional rigidity of the MINI Paceman’s body plays an important role in both its agile handling and its impressive passive safety. Its standard-fitted safety arsenal includes front and side airbags, as well as side curtain airbags for both rows of seats. All seats are fitted with three-point inertia-reel seat belts. Front seat occupants will also find belt tensioners and belt force limiters, while in the rear ISOFIX child seat attachments are in place should they be required.

High-quality standard equipment ‑ such as air conditioning, electrically adjustable exterior mirrors, the Centre Rail and the radio MINI CD with AUX-IN socket ‑ underlines the car’s premium character. The range of options, meanwhile, includes a sports leather steering wheel (standard in the MINI Cooper S Paceman and MINI Cooper SD Paceman) with optional multifunction buttons and cruise control, heated seats, an electrically operated glass roof, Comfort Access, xenon headlights, Adaptive Headlights and Park Distance Control. Added to which, MINI Paceman customers can also make use of innovative MINI Connected on-board functions such as web radio, Facebook and Twitter usage, Dynamic Music, Driving Excitement, Mission Control and the MINIMALISM Analyser.

At a glance.

MINI presents the world’s first Sports Activity Coupé in the premium small and compact vehicle segment; MINI Paceman is the seventh model in the brand family and offers an innovative combination of sporty, extrovert design, hallmark MINI driving fun and an exclusive interior ambience; unique, yet typically MINI, vehicle concept opens up new target groups for the brand’s inimitable style; two doors, large tailgate, lounge concept with two individual seats in the rear.

Expressive, emotionally powerful body design with prominent horizontal lines and powerfully curved surfaces; dynamic proportions in hallmark MINI design language create superbly sporting impression; sporty and elegant appearance and powerful stature of the MINI Paceman symbolise the innovative combination of go-kart feeling on the road and enhanced versatility through optional all-wheel drive.

Upright front end exudes power and presence; hexagonal radiator grille with broad chrome surround, black bordering on the lower edge of the body and other typically MINI design elements lend an individual touch; coupé-style stretched side profile with long doors, dynamically downward-sloping roofline and greenhouse tapering towards the rear; muscular flared wheel arches; distinctive roof form adapted to the car’s coupé lines with integrated rear spoiler; roof can be specified in body colour, white or black; sloping rear window; rear lights in horizontal arrangement for the first time on a MINI.

Bespoke interior design creates typically MINI impression; powerfully formed, horizontally structured instrument panel with newly designed surrounds for the air vents; large circular Centre Speedo, also with new surround in black and decorative inner rings in high-gloss black or chrome; surrounds for the central control panel in a contrasting colour; window buttons arranged in the door panel trim; three-dimensional door ellipses reaching into the rear compartment (illumination optional).

Full-size individual seats in the rear offer high levels of comfort and lateral support, plus generous shoulder room and headroom; legroom optimised through cut-outs in the front seat backrests; integrated armrests in the rear side panel trim; two-section version of the MINI Centre Rail storage and attachment system comes as standard, full-length variant available as an option; variable use of space possible through individually folding rear seat backrests; load capacity: 330 – 1,080 litres.

Particularly powerful engines and standard lowered sports suspension accentuate the trademark MINI go-kart feeling; regular suspension and ride height are available as a no-cost option; two petrol and two diesel engines offered from launch with an output spread from 82 kW/112 hp to 135 kW/184 hp; MINI John Cooper Works Paceman version is in the pipeline; all variants come with a six-speed manual gearbox or a six-speed automatic as an option; MINI ALL4 all-wheel-drive system available for the MINI Cooper S Paceman, MINI Cooper SD Paceman and MINI Cooper D Paceman; outstanding efficiency thanks to state-of-the-art powertrain technology and extensive MINIMALISM technology fitted as standard; Sport Button available as an option.

Sophisticated chassis technology featuring MacPherson spring struts and forged cross members at the front axle, a multi-link rear axle and Electric Power Steering with Servotronic function; Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) as standard, Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) including Electronic Differential Lock Control (EDLC) optional (standard on the MINI Cooper S Paceman, MINI Cooper SD Paceman and MINI Cooper D Paceman ALL4); 16-inch light-alloy wheels as standard (MINI Cooper S Paceman and MINI Cooper SD Paceman: 17-inch);18-inch or 19-inch light-alloy wheels available as an option.

Outstanding occupant protection provided by crash-optimised body structure and extensive range of safety equipment; front and side airbags, side curtain airbags, three-point inertia-reel seat belts on all seats, belt tensioners and belt force limiters at the front, ISOFIX child seat attachments in the rear and a run-flat indicator fitted as standard.

Array of standard equipment includes air conditioning, sports seats for driver and front passenger, Centre Rail and radio MINI CD; high-quality items of optional equipment and wide variety of individualisation options in typical MINI style; selection includes xenon headlights, Adaptive Headlights, rain sensor, Park Distance Control, Comfort Access, electrically operated glass roof and trailer coupling; large choice of exterior paint finishes, bonnet stripes, upholstery variants, interior surfaces and Colour Lines; MINI navigation system, Harman Kardon hi-fi loudspeaker system and unique in-car infotainment functions available via MINI Connected.

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09 November 2012


MINI by PUMA: Smart travel companions.

MINI by PUMA stands for cleverly designed luggage solutions and casual shoe styles perfect for the everyday life in the city. The collection masterfully combines urban lifestyle with sports fashion. The appeal lies in the mix of a clear design language and intelligent functionality. The whole range of products draws inspiration from the UK - home of the automotive brand.     
As of now a range of items, including six bags, one wallet and three sneaker styles will be sold through the MINI Online Shop and selected MINI dealerships.

Innovative bags and luggage for leisure and business.

People who are often on the move need their bags to be reliable and stylish. The black leather effect bags in the MINI by PUMA collection are sporty, elegant and suitable for both men and women. Contrasting zips and detachable luggage tags in bright lime make the bags particularly eye-catching and give them an extra fashionable edge. Subtle appliqué logos and shoulder straps inspired by MINI seatbelts exude understated style. Union Jack motifs and bulldog silhouettes are small decorative details that give the bags a special British touch.

MINI by PUMA attaches great importance to functionality. Cleverly designed interior compartments make the bags ultra-practical for stowing away everyday essentials. Even the luggage tags are multi-functional with hidden zipped compartments and slots for bank cards. Most of the bags have a special zip system that allows their shape and size to be adjusted to suit the user’s needs.

The Doctor’s Bag is a fashionable reinterpretation of an old classic. The metal reinforcement of the interior makes the bag extra sturdy. Additional features include a padded laptop sleeve and an organizer pocket.

The Weekender Bag, with strengthened base, lives up to its name: This travelling bag can be expanded using zips and snap fasteners, making it a flexible luggage solution for short trips. The bag can be comfortably carried by the shoulder strap or the handle. The versatile Workbag, also adjustable in size, is perfect for a busy working day with its cleverly designed interior compartments, which include a protective laptop slot, an integrated smartphone pouch and two separate pockets on the inside of the closing flap.

Sleek and practical, the slimline Holdall Bag is based on the style of a city shopper. The bag comes with a shoulder strap, handles and smart inner compartments with an extra laptop sleeve. The Shoulder Bag also impresses with its well-organized interior, and its size can be adjusted for extra volume. The bag is simple to open and close with its flap and two leather straps. Thanks to its classic contours, the Handbag is the perfect addition to any outfit, whether elegant or sporty. This striking compact handbag is adjustable in size and boasts intelligently designed inner compartments.
The Wallet perfectly complements the bag and luggage range, with room for six cards along with three pockets (one big, two small). The yellow exterior zip brings real flair to the wallet’s design.

Sporty yet stylish shoes.

Sneaker-making know-how meets combined design expertise in the MINI by PUMA shoe collection. Both the low-cut and the chukka sneakers are effortlessly stylish with their sleek wild leather look and slimline silhouettes. The sneakers come with either a striking chequer pattern or Union Jack lining. Appliqué logos on the heel, tongue and sole exemplify the love for detail shared by both brands. As an homage to the UK, bulldogs make an appearance on the inside of the tongue and on a metal rivet on the outside of the shoe.

The black Buckminster Chukka is an absolute must-have for women. The mid-high laced shoe comes with an understated Union Jack pattern on the upper, which can be turned down for an extra fashionable look. The feminine, light-weight English Sneaker is truly eye-catching with its chic broguing. The bright pink laces add a flash of colour to the white shoe.

For the style-conscious man, MINI by PUMA has created the minimalistic chukka sneaker Alwyn Mid. This versatile and trendy eight-hole model comes in black and dark green.

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06 November 2012

MINI John Cooper Works GP

MINI John Cooper Works GP - The Passenger Test

We took a handful of MINIacs to Goodwood and strapped them into the passenger seat whilst Tiff drove sedately around the race track. Watch this short clip to see their reactions. Warning, contains scenes of beep abuse.

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MINI John Cooper Works GP

The fastest production MINI, the MINI John Cooper Works GP goes to Goodwood Race Circuit for a day out in the country.

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