John Cooper Works 3dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
I custom order my 2009 Mini Clubman, Chili red, all the upgrades including 18" wheels and run flats and waited three (3) months for it to be built, shipped and delivered to me 10.1.2008. It was a great ride since I had owned a MG Midget years earlier, so I knew how these little cars feel. But, in 2015 all the problems started with engine light coming on over and over again with these dates and findings, 1) June 2015 - Jan. 2016 a chasing oil leak four times ($ 300 a pop), 2) April 2015 timing chain failure (covered by Mini), Feb. 2016 crack in oil line ( ($750), March 2016 (twice in the shop) another oil leak ($675 each time). April 2016 when I checked the oil and found there was none in the reservoir. The idiot that had worked on my car at the dealer had forgotten to place oil back in after the second March 2016 repair (the service manager said he had been fired due to other complaints) I found this out when I left he vehicle for four (4) days stay at the dealer (I always had it serviced at the Dealer to keep the records accessible) and April 2016 I was told another oil leak and vacuum hose issue ($1,100). May 2016 -A week later, the engine light was back on, this time carbon build-up ($2,700). I spent total of $7,100 on this vehicle from June 2015 to May 2016. Needless to say, I sold (not traded it in) it in a private sale to a guy that collects cars and wanted a 2009 Mini. He did not care about the issues, he just wanted the car and paid the price I asked. It was shipped from Charleston, SC to San Diego, CA on his dime. I purchased a 2016 Outback. Why? I just could not bring myself to trust the Mini mechanics after the oil misstep.
This is a great little car. It's really quick, stops on a dime, and corners like it's on rails all while getting over 30mpg! It's a absolute blast to drive. I love that it's factory tuned to backfire... There's nothing like hearing a pop and having flames shoot out of the tailpipe while shifting! This car has a great exhaust note and lots of low end grunt for a low displacement engine. Not only is it fast, fun, and efficient, but it's also quite practical. It's a small car, don't get me wrong, but It's surprisingly spacious inside. With the back seats down it has great storage space. With the back seats up I can fit 2 adults semi-comfortably back there.
The car is great to drive nad provides a lot of interior space. The sales process was easy but the car was not thoroughly reviewed regarding the complicated alert system for maintanence. The dealership uses the car system to tell the owner that maintance is needed. There is no 5000 mile oil change schedule. The problem is that a yellow light comes on for one second at start and the owner has to go through a complicated push button hold 2 seconds, scroll to another screen, hold again ....... The engines probably love this feature but it is complicated. A big yellow light tells you that the temperature is 32 but you never get a similar warning for important things such as oil level low.
I love my Clubman. If price is not an issue, this is a great, fun car. I get so many comments...someone asked me if it was a MINI Limo. I have taken many road trips of up to 800 miles at a time. The seats could be a little softer, but they are not bad. They hold you in place. I get better gas mileage than posted...29 in town and up to 38 highway...depending on how heavy my foot gets. It's definitely an attention getter car. My battery had to be replace in less than 2 years...but fortunately still under warranty. Options are expensive as are the run flat tires. I am looking forward to buying the Countryman in a couple of years. Love the barn doors.
So far so good. After 4500 miles no issues and the car has surpassed expectations. This really is the perfect city car. Easy to park, good on gas, fun to drive, and can be made to accommodate your stuff or your friends. So far very pleased with purchase. Only shortfall is the brake feel. The JCW is more performance oriented version but the brake feel is too touchy for spirited driving. The brakes feel like they grab too much even with slight pedal pressure. Easy to upset balance of car. Stopping power is excellent with the 4 piston front brakes made by Brembo. Good car. Take the plunge you fence sitters.