2007 Mini Cooper S: Idiot!
February 11, 2008
The Cooper S is a performance car, right? Feisty turbocharged engine, sports car handling, blah, blah, blah.
So why isn't there a temp gauge in this thing?
I flicked through the trip computer's functions, thinking that maybe it was like recent BMW's where you access coolant temp info. via the trip computer. No dice. Then, not being too proud, I RTFM which simply states that "A warning lamp will come on if the coolant, and therefore the engine, becomes too hot." In other words, an idiot light. We can almost hear Napoleon Dynamite's reaction...
This is strange, because as you can see, the previous-generation Mini had one:
Are they serious? Our LT Ford Focus has a temp gauge. Granted, you hardly ever hear about modern cars overheating, but still, we enthusiast types like to know when the engine is warm for a few reasons:
1) To know when it's safe to drive it harder (having the oil warm and circulating freely is a good thing.)
2) To know when you can blast the heater on those cold commutes to work.
John DiPietro, Automotive Editor at 11,442 miles.