If you’re not already familiar, Spike has been Mini’s bulldog mascot since the modern Mini was introduced back in 2001. It’s not exactly the most well-known mascot in the world, as evidenced by the fact that the only article we have that mentions Spike is a 10-year-old post from a time when a writer by the name of PRBot still worked here (RIP). Presumably, he’s more well-known among actual Mini owners. And soon, if you buy a new Mini, he’ll also be your new digital personal assistant.
Mini says Spike’s design was inspired by English bulldogs, which makes sense since Mini is still ostensibly a British automaker even though it’s owned by BMW.
Anyway, where were we? Oh yeah, Mini’s new digital personal assistant. Spike will be launched at the Shanghai auto show this month in the cockpit of the Mini Aceman concept, showing up on the infotainment screen and driver display. Spike will then later show up in future production Mini models as a “digital companion” that will provide “various forms of support.” You know, just like Microsoft’s Clippy.
“Mini will always be synonymous with emotions and remarkable experiences,” said Oliver Heilmer, Head of Mini Design, in a statement. “That’s why we are now taking Spike into the future as a digital character. And he is not just a design experiment – he is becoming a characterful companion for the user experience.”
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