Hauls Stuff and Butt - 2014 Mini Cooper Hardtop Long-Term Road Test

2014 Mini Cooper Hardtop Long-Term Road Test

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2014 Mini Cooper: Hauls Stuff and Butt

August 18, 2015

2014 Mini Cooper

First of all, I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that these boxes would not have fit in a first-generation Mini Cooper. I'm not talking about the original Mini Cooper, although they wouldn't have fit in there either, but about the first generation of the modern Mini Cooper, which debuted in 2002 thanks to the folks at BMW, which of course owns Mini.

Some complain that the 2014 Mini Cooper, like our blue long-termer, is a bloated mutation of the best little car ever made. They say it's no longer a Mini. They say it has morphed into something else entirely, something that puts comfort and convenience above fun.

And while it's true that the Mini has gained size and weight with each redesign, those complainers are wrong. Dead wrong.

This car is a blast to drive, maybe the most fun car in our fleet. Yes, more fun than the Viper, Mustang or GTI. When you drive it, you end up driving it. Really driving it. You can't help but fling it around. The car loves it, begs for it. And you just can't resist.

All of the above was true about the first- and second-generation Mini as well, only now you get the fun with the space. Now adults can fit inside the Mini, front and back. And cargo, like my daughter's new bedroom furniture, can be tossed in the back. Don't get me wrong, this is no minivan. But it's a small car that nails the balance between usability and personal enjoyment.

Just be warned, that if you buy a Mini with the Leather Lounge Satellite Gray upholstery, which is essentially white, cargo leaves a mark. For 12 months we've been throwing boxes and bikes back there and the seatbacks are looking a bit beat.

Scott Oldham, Editor in Chief @ 18,906 miles

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