It's a piece of history with modern underpinnings, BMW-engineered suspension and steering, ample comfort and safety features, hatchback utility and free scheduled maintenance for three years/36,000 miles.
Not much horsepower in the base Cooper, questionable seat comfort, minimal room for rear passengers or luggage.
I'm parked alongside the road to Castellet, España, in a spanking-new 2007 Mini Cooper — an S version, for the record — when Officer Jose Lopez of the Policía Local de Catalunya rounds the corner. Instantly, his roof lights snap on as he angles his cruiser across the one-and-a-bit-lane road, ending up nose-to-nose with my Hyper Blue example of the freshly redesigned two-door hatchback.
"Documentos, por favor."
"Huh? I'm just sitting here," I say to myself.
Apparently, his radio had been crackling all morning with reports of a Mini buzzing along multiple roads on his beat, seemingly all at once. Looking at our 2007 Mini Cooper S with bewilderment, Officer Lopez wants an explanation.
Design language "Velocidad es nada. It must have been someone else, señor," I manage to explain via a halting combination of hand signals and years-dormant junior-high Spanish. Several someone elses, in fact, as 40-plus examples of the 2007 Mini Cooper S hatchback are simultaneously in the hands of a global plethora of others like me. After an eventual call to the jefe at HQ confirms my story, Office Lopez eases up a bit. The perplexed look remains, however, as he scans my Mini Cooper with renewed interest.
Perhaps he is trying to spot differences between the new model and its predecessor, and having no luck. I know how he feels. In presentations by BMW brass last night, the preservation of the "Mini design language" had been a recurring theme.
Basic dimensions like the wheelbase and track widths are unchanged, while height and overall width deviate by a pencil width or less. European pedestrian impact standards, gruesome though the visuals may be, made it necessary to extend the nose 1.5 inches and raise the hood above the engine by about 0.8 inch to create a bit more crushable volume for the cranial protection of hapless jaywalkers.
By paying careful attention to the proportions of the rest of the car, such as carrying that 0.8-inch increase down the length of the belt line and adding a like amount to the rear overhang, the reverse rhinoplasty is all but invisible. It still looks like a Mini. The icon remains intact. The faithful can exhale.
"I have a Mini," exhales the now smiling Officer Lopez out of nowhere.
Room to vroom I open the door so he can look inside, where the most visible differences reside. The even larger central speedometer now houses the radio controls and display. It's now big enough to house the optional navigation system screen while still functioning on the perimeter as a speedo.
With most of the radio relocated upward — the volume knob and disc slot remain lower down — the climate controls could be reworked. Some might think the Mini logo shape of the button array is gimmicky, but at least controls of different sorts aren't crammed together anymore. Toggle-switch fans need not worry, as they're back in full force, with a second set added above the rearview mirror.
The biggest news for drivers is that the center stack remodel made it slimmer, resulting in a substantially bigger foot box. Now my wide-ish pair of size 13s no longer snags the pedals while dancing through corners. Equally good is the new telescopic steering wheel, which gives the knees more room to work. More comfortably sculpted seats complete the picture.
Adios, amigo Officer Lopez has seen enough, and says good-bye as he climbs back into his squad car, but not before he releases me with broken English and hand gestures to "Have at it, but be careful." Who am I to argue with an officer of the law?
The road to Castellet is narrow, undulating and sinuous. The new Mini Cooper S eats it for lunch. While the suspension layout — struts up front, multilink in the rear — and the tire sizes are essentially the same as before, there are noticeable revisions.
Slightly increased wheel travel lets the suspension breathe a bit, while lighter rear trailing arms, aluminum instead of steel, reduce unsprung weight and allow the chassis engineers more freedom with the damping. Revised steering geometry and a quicker ratio make turn-in more immediate, yet improve straight-line stability. Fourth-generation Dunlop 195/55R16 run-flat tires feature less rigid sidewalls.
It all results in handling that's just as epic as before, with much less kicking and screaming when the road gets lumpy. Even the optional 205/45R17 tires, brutish at times on the last car, have a shot at being livable on the streets and freeways back home.
My personal biggest fear about the new Mini was the switch to electric power steering (EPS). Thankfully, I, too, can exhale as BMW has managed to do what others have not: make EPS, through careful hardware and software tuning, feel like "regular" good steering. And even though the rack itself is solid-mounted to the chassis for good direct feel and immediate response, the EPS system nicely filters out steering nastiness like shimmy and kickback. Kudos.
New and improved Partnering with PSA (a.k.a. Peugeot and Citroën) BMW invested a lot in two new engines for the Mini Cooper, in order to rid itself of the Chrysler-derived, South-American-built mills found in the old car. The new power plants are built at BMW's own Hams Hall engine plant, a short lorry ride away from the Mini assembly plant in Oxford. This alone accounts for a big chunk of the increase in U.K.-sourced parts content from 40 to 60 percent.
An all-new turbocharged, not supercharged, 1.6-liter engine sits under the Cooper S's engorged hood. That turbo is a twin-scroll unit, which spins up faster. Direct injection allows a high 10.5:1 compression ratio. Valvetronic variable valve timing and lift does away with the traditional throttle butterfly altogether. And the major bits are aluminum, making the whole thing lighter.
Horsepower is up to 175, from 168, peaking now at 5500 rpm instead of six grand. Torque not only increases from 162 to 177 pound-feet, but peaks at a mere 1600 rpm and stays there all the way to 5000. Short bursts of 192 lb-ft overboost await the command of a heavy right foot. Despite all of that, fuel economy allegedly improves 18 percent. We'll have to wait a few weeks for U.S. EPA test figures.
The base Cooper's 1.6-liter engine is also all-new, albeit without direct injection. Output increases are modest as horsepower rises by 3 to 118, and torque climbs 8 to 118 lb-ft. Fuel economy is said to increase 16 percent, making a U.S. highway rating of 40 mpg possible. We'll have to wait and see.
Transmission choices have thankfully improved, as the five-speed manual and continuously variable transmission have been axed. Now all Coopers start with a six-speed manual, with improved synchros, including reverse. The previously S-only six-speed Steptronic automatic with manual mode is optional across the board. Propulsive forces feed out of these gearboxes through equal-length driveshafts, cutting torque steer off at the knees.
What that all boils down to on my Mini Cooper S is a helluva good time, as the new S doesn't run out of breath nearly as easily as its predecessor. Apart from the welcome increase in thrust, the absence of supercharger whine is immediately obvious. This engine simply goes about its business, pulling strong and smooth, with no appreciable lag or turbo whine. Driven at a moderate pace, upshifts are accompanied by a pleasant exhaust burble.
It's all good Even though the Cooper S has been redesigned, with no major parts shared with the outgoing one, every mechanical change has been for the better, while the iconic styling that we all know and love has been painstakingly preserved.
Prices, which are not expected to rise significantly, won't be released until January. BMW would not confirm when U.S. sales would begin, but indications suggest late February is a safe bet.
Excuse me while I figure out how to get my name on the waiting list. Shall I put your name down for one, too, Officer Lopez?
The manufacturer loaned Edmunds this vehicle for the purposes of evaluation.
What's a good price on a used 2007 MINI Cooper ?
Save up to $299.8 on one of 56 used 2007 MINI Coopers for sale at dealerships within 25 miles of Ashburn, Virginia with prices as low as $4999 as of Jan 16, 2018, based on data from 18 dealers and 50 consumer-driven dealer ratings ranging from 3.7 to 5 out of 5 stars.
Price comparisons for used 2007 MINI Cooper trim styles:
The used 2007 MINI Cooper Base is priced around $5666 with average odometer reading of 108979 miles.
The used 2007 MINI Cooper S is priced around $8047 with average odometer reading of 80887 miles.
Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, Virginia. 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.
What options are available on the 2007 MINI Cooper?
Available MINI Cooper 2007 Submodel Types: Hatchback, John Cooper Works, Convertible, S
Available MINI Cooper 2007 Trims: S, Base, John Cooper Works
Exterior Colors: Midnight Black Metallic, Blazing Red Metallic, White Silver Metallic, Volcanic Orange, Deep Blue Metallic, Thunder Gray Metallic, Electric Blue Metallic, Sparkling Silver Metallic, Spice Orange Metallic, Chili Red, Eclipse Gray Metallic, Horizon Blue Metallic , Hyper Blue Metallic, Ice Blue, British Racing Green II Metallic, Iced Chocolate Metallic, British Racing Green II, Moonwalk Gray Metallic, Astro Black Metallic, Highclass Gray Metallic, Pepper White, Hot Chocolate Metallic, Interchange Yellow, Lightning Blue Metallic, Pure Silver Metallic, Velvet Silver Metallic, British Racing Green Metallic, Kite Blue Metallic, Jet Black, Melting Silver Metallic, Indi Blue Metallic, Lapisluxury Blue, Mellow Yellow, Caribbean Aqua Metallic, Laser Blue Metallic, Oxygen Blue, Dark Silver Metallic, John Cooper Works Rebel Green, Laguna Green Metallic, Purple Haze Metallic, Reef Blue Metallic, Solid Gold Metallic
Interior Colors: Checkered Carbon Black/Black cloth, Carbon Black Cross Punch leather, Double Stripe Carbon Black premium cloth, Carbon Black leather/sueded microfiber, Carbon Black SensaTec leatherette, Carbon Black leatherette, Checkered Carbon Black/Carbon Black cloth, Grey/Carbon Black leatherette, Black Pearl leatherette/cloth, Carbon Black leather/cloth, MINI Yours Carbon Black Lounge leather, Lounge Carbon Black leather, Panther Black/Panther Black, Black/Panther Black, Black Pearl leather/cloth, Diamond Carbon Black leather/cloth, Black/Panther Black leatherette, Carbon Black Lounge leather, Punch Carbon Black leather, Gravity Tuscan Beige leather, Panther Black Leather, Gravity Polar Beige leather, Gray/Black, Malt Brown Chesterfield leather, Panther Black leather, Satellite Grey Lounge leather, Black/Black leatherette, Cordoba Beige, Gravity Tuscan Beige/Tuscan Beige leather, Gray/Carbon Black leatherette, John Cooper Works Black Checkered cloth, Lounge Toffee leather, Pacific Blue/Carbon Black leather/cloth, Toffee Lounge leather, Carbon Black Dinamica/Cloth leather/cloth, Dark Truffle Cross Punch leather, Diamond Satellite Gray leather/cloth, Lounge Classic Green leather, Lounge Dark Truffle leather, Red/Carbon Black leather/cloth, Rooster Red/Carbon Black leather/cloth, Space Gray/Panther Black, Carbon Black Checkered cloth, Cross Check Toffee/Carbon Black leather/cloth, Dark Blue leather, Gray/Black leatherette, Lapis Blue/Magnesium Gray, Lounge Hot Chocolate leather, Lounge Redwood Red/Redwood Red leather, Lounge Satellite Gray leather, MINI Yours Satellite Grey Lounge leather, Malt Brown leather, Octagon Tartan Red/Black leather/cloth, Panther Black/Gray, Polar Beige Gravity leather, Polar Beige/Carbon Black Cross Check leather/cloth, Ray Rooster Red/Carbon Black leather/cloth, Space Gray/Magnesium Gray, Space Gray/Panther Black cloth
Popular Features: Post-collision safety system, Stability Control, Audio and cruise controls on steering wheel, Bluetooth, Auto Climate Control, USB Inputs, Multi-Zone Climate Control, Automatic Emergency Braking, Fold Flat Rear Seats, Rear Bench Seats, Tire Pressure Warning, Aux Audio Inputs, Trip Computer, Heated seats, Electronic Folding Mirrors, Sunroof/Moonroof, Upgraded Stereo, Keyless Entry/Start, Upgraded Headlights, Navigation, Parking sensors, Soft Top, Alarm, Back-up camera, Heads up display
Engine/Mechanics: 3, 4 cylinders
Transmission: AUTOMATIC, MANUAL
Fuel Types: premium unleaded (required)
Drivetrains: front wheel drive
used 2007 MINI Cooper Overview
The used 2007 MINI Cooper is offered in the following submodels: Hatchback, Convertible. Available styles include S 2dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl Turbo 6M), 2dr Hatchback (1.6L 4cyl 6M), and S 2dr Convertible (1.6L 4cyl S/C 6M). Pre-owned Cooper models are available with a 1.6-liter gas engine, with output up to 172 hp, depending on engine type. The used 2007 Cooper comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 6-speed manual.