2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works

Type:

What’s new

  • Reconfigured options structure, with new Classic, Signature and Iconic trims
  • Apple CarPlay now available
  • Updated infotainment system interface
  • Part of the third Mini Cooper Convertible generation introduced for 2016

Pros & Cons

  • Three different engines blend speed, thrill and fuel efficiency
  • Excellent handling makes it quick and fun in turns and curves
  • The interior looks classy and upscale
  • Available add-ons offer high degree of personalization
  • The ride quality can be stiff and rough, especially with larger tires
  • More expensive than most rivals
  • Cargo capacity is very limited
Other years
2019
MINI Convertible for Sale
MSRP Starting at
$36,900

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Which Convertible does Edmunds recommend?

You can wring out decent performance from the Mini Convertible's turbocharged three-cylinder engine. It has enough power for most daily driving and open-road adventures. As such, stick with the base Cooper. With the Hardtop, we recommend going with the Cooper S, but the extra power is less of a requirement here. No matter which powertrain you prefer, we suggest starting with the Signature trim. There are more optional extras at this level, giving the Hardtop that custom feel Mini is known for.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

7.4 / 10

Energetic engines and lively handling make the 2019 Mini Convertible one of the most enjoyable drop-tops to drive. Factor in a classy interior, retro charm, and endless possibilities for personalization and the Mini Convertible turns into being a particularly distinctive one as well.

The Mini Convertible is an exceptionally fun car to drive, whether it's powered by the base three-cylinder engine, the 189-hp midlevel engine, or the highly caffeinated 228-hp turbo four-cylinder in the John Cooper Works trim. The Mini always feels playful and engaging, its tires firmly embedded in the asphalt.

The Mini's extensive paint, interior and performance combinations are what truly set it apart, giving owners a degree of personalization that you'd otherwise associate with luxury brands such as Bentley. Want 18-inch wheels, an illuminating dashboard trim and a Union Jack design stitched into the seat headrests? Done. But there's a catch: The car is also pricier than its rivals. The convertible's base price is just a starting point for a bottomless options list, and the price can escalate with shocking quickness. (Lest we forget, Mini is owned by BMW and follows similar wallet-busting options strategies.)

While no other small convertible can match the Mini's level of customization, there are others worth considering, notably the Mazda MX-5 Miata, the Fiat 124 Spider, and even the Volkswagen Beetle convertible. But even among this group, the Mini Convertible's charm and likability stand out. It's that good.

2019 MINI Convertible models

The 2019 Mini Convertible is a compact convertible that seats four and is available in base Cooper, Cooper S and high-performance John Cooper Works trims. The base Cooper trim serves as a great starting point for customization, but the attractive base price can escalate quickly with desirable options. The Cooper S adds larger wheels and more power and performance, while the John Cooper Works is the highest performer of the bunch, with a cranked-up turbo engine and sophisticated sport suspension.

This year, Mini is also offering three subtrim levels (Classic, Signature and Iconic) that add an increasing number of features. A wide variety of styling, performance and luxury upgrades are available on most versions.

The Cooper starts with a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine (134 horsepower, 162 pound-feet of torque) paired with a six-speed manual transmission and front-wheel drive. A six-speed automatic transmission is optional.

Standard features for the starter Classic subtrim include a power-operated fabric convertible roof (which functions like a sunroof), 15-inch alloy wheels, an electronic limited-slip differential, automatic headlights and wipers, heated mirrors, push-button ignition, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a cooled glovebox, cruise control, premium vinyl upholstery, and 50/50-split folding rear seatbacks.

Technology highlights include a rearview camera, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth connectivity, smartphone app integration, a 6.5-inch display screen, and a six-speaker sound system with HD radio, a USB port and an auxiliary input jack.

The Cooper S adds a more powerful turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine (189 hp, 207 lb-ft of torque), a hood scoop, dual center-mounted exhaust tips, 16-inch wheels with run-flat tires (regular tires are optional), LED foglights and sport front seats.

The John Cooper Works trim ratchets up the performance index with a hotter turbo four-cylinder engine (228 hp, 236 lb-ft), 17-inch wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, LED headlights, an aerodynamic body kit, a rear spoiler, a sport steering wheel and special seats with cloth upholstery. The standard suspension is available as a no-cost option for the JCW.

Features added by the Signature subtrim differ slightly from the base Cooper, S and JCW. But in general, it adds keyless entry, heated front seats and dual-zone automatic climate control. Cooper models get 16-inch wheels, Cooper S versions get 16- or 17-inch wheels, and JCW models get adaptive dampers. Mini's Active Driving Assistant suite of safety features — forward collision warning, adaptive cruise control and automatic high-beam control — is also included on Cooper S and JCW models. Selecting the Signature trim also opens the door to additional paint choices, interior dashboard appliques and upholstery choices.

The Signature's Premium package further adds power-folding mirrors, auto-dimming interior and exterior mirrors, chrome exterior trim, LED headlights and foglights, cornering lights, satellite radio and a 12-speaker Harman Kardon audio system.

The Iconic trim includes those upgrades, plus leather upholstery, a navigation system, the Active Driving Assistant package, wireless charging, Apple CarPlay and an 8.8-inch touchscreen.

Many of the above options can be ordered separately, as can various exterior and interior styling modifications. A Driver Assistance package for the Iconic trim adds front parking sensors and an automated parallel parking system.

Trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the Mini Cooper S Convertible (turbo 2.0L inline-4 | 6-speed manual | FWD).

NOTE: Since this test was conducted in 2016, the current Mini Convertible has received some revisions, including standard rear parking sensors and a standard rearview camera. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's Mini Convertible

Scorecard

Overall7.4 / 10
Driving8.0
Interior7.0

Driving

8.0
The turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine might not boast impressive stats on paper, but the Mini's relatively light weight makes it feel quick. There's not much body roll, and you can chuck it around tight turns in classic Mini fashion.

Acceleration

7.0
Since peak torque output occurs very low in the rev range, the Cooper S always feels like a quick squeeze of the gas is all you need to shoot through a gap or overtake on the highway. It feels stronger than our so-so 0-60 mph track time of 6.8 seconds, which was limited by traction issues.

Braking

9.0
The Cooper slows smoothly thanks to a predictable and progressive brake pedal. Our simulated-panic stop from 60 mph netted a remarkably short stopping distance of 101 feet. That's a similar distance to results from true sports cars such as the Porsche Boxster S.

Steering

7.5
The steering effort is light in Normal drive mode, graduating to a heavier weight in Sport mode. The steering response is quick and direct, which is great in parking lots and tight corners alike. But those quick responses do make the Mini feel a bit darty on the highway.

Handling

8.5
This is why you bought a Mini. Its short footprint, quick reflexes and grippy tires make it an absolute joy to toss around a corner. Excellent stability control calibration lets you explore the limits of the Mini's grip before it gently reins you in.

Drivability

7.0
Although it requires a light amount of effort to modulate, the vague clutch makes it somewhat difficult to find the engagement point. The tall shifter is easy to grab, but throws are unusually long and the shift gates aren't well defined.

Comfort

Though no Mini could ever truly be called comfortable, the Cooper S Convertible isn't punishing given its level of performance. Adaptive suspension dampers help smooth out the ride, and there's ample seat cushioning. Great efforts have been made to keep the cabin quiet, even at highway speeds.

Seat comfort

7.5
The wonderfully supportive sport seats offer lumbar and seat-height adjustments, and there's even an extendable thigh cushion. Long-distance trips will be no problem. Larger drivers might feel confined by the narrow side bolsters.

Ride comfort

8.5
The ride in the Cooper S is predictably short-legged and stiff, more so than in the base model. We can forgive the Cooper S somewhat: It is the sportier model and the ride matches its intentions. Caution: It would be even worse if the wheels were larger than our tester's 17-inch alloys.

Noise & vibration

7.5
Lifting off the throttle in Sport mode produces a satisfying burble from the exhaust. There's some wind and tire noise, but the Mini is very quiet for a convertible. We're quite impressed with the near lack of cowl shake on rough roads, a typical convertible drawback.

Climate control

7.0
Dual-zone automatic climate control is standard across the board, and the fans aren't overly loud as they work to keep the cabin at a comfortable temperature. Strangely, temperature adjustments can be made only in 2-degree increments.

Interior

7.0
Its high roof and height-adjustable front seats mean that even taller occupants can fit in the Mini easily — in the front at least, since there's almost no rear legroom. Since you won't be using the back seat much, remove those headrests for a better view out the small rear window.

Ease of use

7.5
The controls are all within the driver's reach, and the instrument panel tilts with the steering wheel so the driver information screen is always visible. The low-mounted infotainment controller is difficult to use, especially with the center armrest obstructing access.

Getting in/getting out

6.5
The doors open wide and the opening is tall and squared off, so most people won't have much trouble getting in or out of the front seats. But those seats don't fold forward much, so getting into the back with the top up is a challenge.

Driving position

8.0
Given the wide range of seat adjustments, it's easy to find a suitable driving position. The steering wheel telescopes a fair amount, and there's plenty of seat travel. Taller drivers won't have headroom issues with the seats lowered to the floor.

Roominess

8.5
As its name suggests, the Mini's cabin is quite compact. There's enough head- and legroom up front for tall occupants to relax without feeling confined, but they will have to cozy up side by side. Rear legroom is nearly nonexistent, so the back is only suitable for small children.

Visibility

6.0
Forward and side visibility is excellent thanks to an upright windshield and tall windows. But the convertible's undersize rear window and visually intrusive backseat headrests limit the view out the back. The top folds into a small hump that also cuts into rear visibility.

Quality

Interior materials are better than what you'll find in other compact cars. There's extensive use of soft-touch plastic, and the leather upholstery feels BMW-grade. But when the Mini Convertible hits bumps, certain elements of the cabin respond with rattles and quakes.

Convertible top

Press and hold the interior toggle switch to fold the Mini's soft top back to a sunroof-size opening. Release and hold again to drop it completely. The folding operation can also be completed with the key fob, but the signal range is short.

Utility

You shouldn't buy a Mini Convertible if practicality is a deciding factor. Storage space in the cabin and trunk is very limited, and even fitting small suitcases will be a challenge with the rear seats up. Maximize your carrying capacity by treating the rear bench as a cargo shelf.

Small-item storage

6.0
The cabin has three cupholders: two in front of the shifter and one between the rear seats. There's not much room in the door pockets, central armrest or glovebox. The dashboard cubby on the hardtop is nonfunctional in the convertible.

Cargo space

The cargo area is very small, with just 7.6 cubic feet of storage space, decreasing to only 5.7 cubic feet when the top is down. The small trunklid folds down to create access, and the rear edge of the soft top can be unlatched and hinged up to increase the size of the opening.

Child safety seat accommodation

5.0
There are two pairs of LATCH anchors in the back row and two hooks on the seatbacks. The anchors are concealed under easily accessible and removable plastic covers. The main difficulty comes with trying to mount or access the car seat if the top is up.

Technology

The central display is accessed primarily through a control knob, which is derived from BMW's iDrive. It's easy to use and features crisp, vibrant graphics. Many now-common safety aids such as blind-spot warning are absent, as is Android Auto integration. (Apple CarPlay is a new addition for 2019.)

Consumer reviews

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Average user rating: 3.0 stars based on 1 total reviews

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    Features & Specs

    John Cooper Works 2dr Convertible features & specs
    John Cooper Works 2dr Convertible
    2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M
    MSRP$36,900
    MPG 22 city / 31 hwy
    SeatingSeats 4
    Transmission6-speed manual
    Horsepower228 hp @ 5200 rpm
    See all for sale
    See all 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works features & specs

    Safety

    Our experts’ favorite Convertible safety features:

    Parking Assistant
    Finds an available parallel parking spot and guides the Mini into the space with minimal driver input.
    Front and Rear Park Distance Control
    Sounds an alert as the Mini approaches an object in front of or behind the vehicle.
    Active Driving Assistant
    Maintains a set distance between the Mini and the vehicle in front while the cruise control system is active.

    Mini Convertible vs. the competition

    Mini Convertible vs. Mazda MX-5 Miata

    The Miata has long been the standard by which small, fun convertibles are measured. It's no racehorse, but the Miata has good midrange power — once it gets up to speed — and its power is very well-balanced with the car's light mass. The combination yields a car that is as fun cruising a coastal highway as it is zipping through some open turns. Its most obvious downside compared to the Mini is that it seats just two passengers.

    Compare Mini Convertible & Mazda MX-5 Miata features

    Mini Convertible vs. Audi A3

    The Audi A3 convertible may be the Mini's closest rival, at least in terms of feature set and performance potential. Like the Mini, the A3 offers a delightful blend of balance and sporty handling, along with a zippy turbocharged engine and a refined interior. Neither offers much in the way of cargo or rear passenger space, but the A3 holds the advantage when it comes to infotainment technology and the availability of all-wheel drive.

    Compare Mini Convertible & Audi A3 features

    Mini Convertible vs. Volkswagen Beetle Convertible

    Arguably offering as much charm as the Mini, the Beetle convertible is also a car continuing a beloved lineage in a modern context. Both cars offer snappy performance and decent fuel economy, but your passengers will enjoy more elbow room in the Beetle. But like the Mini, the Beetle suffers from a deficit of interior cargo space and poor sightlines to the rear. The VW's interior isn't quite as savvy as the Mini's either, and the personalization options aren't nearly as broad

    Compare Mini Convertible & Volkswagen Beetle Convertible features

    FAQ

    Is the MINI Convertible a good car?

    The Edmunds experts tested the 2019 Convertible both on the road and at the track, giving it a 7.4 out of 10. You probably care about MINI Convertible fuel economy, so it's important to know that the Convertible gets an EPA-estimated 25 mpg. What about cargo capacity? When you're thinking about carrying stuff in your new car, keep in mind that the Convertible has 7.6 cubic feet of trunk space. And then there's safety and reliability. Edmunds has all the latest NHTSA and IIHS crash-test scores, plus industry-leading expert and consumer reviews to help you understand what it's like to own and maintain a MINI Convertible. Learn more

    What's new in the 2019 MINI Convertible?

    According to Edmunds’ car experts, here’s what’s new for the 2019 MINI Convertible:

    • Reconfigured options structure, with new Classic, Signature and Iconic trims
    • Apple CarPlay now available
    • Updated infotainment system interface
    • Part of the third Mini Cooper Convertible generation introduced for 2016
    Learn more

    Is the MINI Convertible reliable?

    To determine whether the MINI Convertible is reliable, read Edmunds' authentic consumer reviews, which come from real owners and reveal what it's like to live with the Convertible. Look for specific complaints that keep popping up in the reviews, and be sure to compare the Convertible's average consumer rating to that of competing vehicles. Learn more

    Is the 2019 MINI Convertible a good car?

    There's a lot to consider if you're wondering whether the 2019 MINI Convertible is a good car. Edmunds' expert testing team reviewed the 2019 Convertible and gave it a 7.4 out of 10. Safety scores, fuel economy, cargo capacity and feature availability should all be factors in determining whether the 2019 Convertible is a good car for you. Learn more

    How much should I pay for a 2019 MINI Convertible?

    The least-expensive 2019 MINI Convertible is the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $36,900.

    Other versions include:

    • John Cooper Works 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M) which starts at $36,900
    Learn more

    What are the different models of MINI Convertible?

    If you're interested in the MINI Convertible, the next question is, which Convertible model is right for you? Convertible variants include John Cooper Works 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M). For a full list of Convertible models, check out Edmunds’ Features & Specs page. Learn more

    More about the 2019 MINI Convertible

    The reasons to like the Mini Convertible go on and on: It's fun to drive, easy to park and cheap to run, and its cabin offers a near-luxury experience. Plus, the roof folds down, which makes any car more enjoyable. But what really sets the Mini Convertible apart are the options for customization. Whether you want leather seats, an adaptive suspension or sideview mirrors painted up like British flags, Mini is happy to oblige. When it comes to having it your way, no other small convertible can match the Mini: The possible combinations number in the millions, with your budget your only limit.

    Besides customization, there are a lot of reasons to recommend the Mini Convertible, chief among them the powertrain lineup. Engine choices include a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder that produces 134 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque and a turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder, tuned for 189 hp and 207 lb-ft in the Cooper S. In the John Cooper Works edition, the 2.0-liter engine packs 228 hp and 236 lb-ft. All provide plenty of power and all are reasonably fuel-efficient, with EPA ratings ranging from a high of 32 mpg combined (28 city/37 highway) for the three-cylinder version with the manual transmission down to 25 mpg combined for the manual-equipped John Cooper Works.

    And the Mini offers plenty of grip to go with its zip. Some cars hug the road; the Mini feels as if it was glued there. Small and light, the Mini Convertible is a big-time smile generator in the curves and very easy to park in town. The convertible is surprisingly quiet with the top down. The one caveat is that the ride can be very harsh, especially if you order your Mini Convertible with larger wheels or the sport-tuned suspension. The John Cooper Works model is particularly hard-riding, but the optional adaptive suspension helps a great deal.

    The cabin is nicely finished, built with materials significantly better than what we're used to seeing in a subcompact car. The gauges are crisp, and we love the big 8-inch central display screen. Front seating is excellent. But this being a convertible, there are trade-offs: The back seat and the trunk are tiny. Visibility to the rear is restricted when the top is up.

    Mini offers the convertible in three trim levels. The Cooper is nicely outfitted and affordable, provided you go easy on the options. The Cooper S adds more power and a sportier demeanor. The John Cooper Works turns the Mini Convertible into a road-going racer. From there, you'll have a plethora of stand-alone options available to create the Mini you like best. Edmunds can help you find your perfect 2019 Mini Convertible.

    2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works Overview

    The 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works is offered in the following styles: John Cooper Works 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M).

    What do people think of the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works?

    Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2019 Convertible John Cooper Works 3.0 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2019 Convertible John Cooper Works.

    Edmunds Expert Reviews

    Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works and all model years in our database. Our rich analysis includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2019 Convertible John Cooper Works featuring deep dives into trim levels including John Cooper Works, etc. with careful analysis around pricing, features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving and performance. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

    Read our full review of the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works here.

    Our Review Process

    This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

    We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

    What's a good price for a New 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works?

    Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on new cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

    Which 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Workses are available in my area?

    2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works Listings and Inventory

    Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works.

    Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2019 [object Object] Convertible John Cooper Works for sale near you.

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    Find a new MINI Convertible for sale - 4 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $18,310.

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    Why trust Edmunds?

    Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including all models of the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works and all available trim types: John Cooper Works. Rich, trim-level features & specs and options data tracked for the 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works include (but are not limited to): MSRP, available incentives and deals, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (interior and exterior color, upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, cruise control, parking assistance, lane sensing, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy and MPG (city, highway, and combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (interior cabin space, vehicle length and width, seating capacity, cargo space). Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds expert review, safety rating, and color.

    Should I lease or buy a 2019 MINI Convertible John Cooper Works?

    Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

    Check out MINI lease specials