2010 MINI Cooper Consumer Review: Not Reliable

2010 MINI Cooper - Consumer Review

Average Consumer Rating

17 Total Reviews

S 2dr Hatchback (1.6L 4-cyl. Turbo 6-speed Manual)

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Build Quality
Reliability Value
12 of 12 people found this review helpful
Not Reliable
By dynamos on


2010 MINI Cooper S 2dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl Turbo 6M)


We loved our Mini--until about 15,000 miles, when it began to run a little rough. By 18,000 miles, the check engine light came on. We took it to the local Mini dealer for service. Turns out there were multiple error messages, due to excessive carbon build-up in the engine. The problem was caused by the direct injection system. They cleaned the engine by removing the intake manifold and blowing out the engine with crushed walnut shells. Also, the timing belt tensioner was loose and leaking oil. They tightened it and replaced the gasket. The service writer stated that the repairs would have cost over $600 if the car was not on warranty.

Best Features

The car is fun to drive and gets good gas mileage. Ours was an automatic.

Worst Features

Mini and BMW needs to fix the carbon build-up problem. It was suggested we used a top tier gas, like Chevron with Techron to lessen the problem. Unfortunately, 90% of the fuel we used in our Mini was Chevron Premium. Turns out this carbon problem, along with the timing chain issue has been around since 2007. Supposedly, the 2012's have solved the issue, although the service guy did not know what had been done. I would stay away from Mini. If you search the internet, you will find many more owners and former owners with similar problems. We traded for a Honda.
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