I dug around and got the answer to my question from the Bloomberg news wire
dated Setember 28th (the last time BMW publicly commented).
It said BMW "may" introduce the new Rover-Mini in the U.S. in late 2001.
Rover lost $1 billion last year and should lose the same this year. Selling
the Mini in the States could help get it in the black. In order for it to be
successfull, BMW would have to create the same "buzz" that VW did when they
re-introduced the Beetle. Can it be done? (I don't think so, a lot more
Beetles were sold in the U.S. than Minis).
The decison should be made by the end of the year and announced at the
Detroit Auto Show in January 2000.
On another note, BMW is apparently deciding whether to kill the Rover name
altogether and call the new mid-size Rover due out in 2002 an MG.