Second Service Surprises - 2014 Mini Cooper Hardtop Long-Term Road Test

2014 Mini Cooper Hardtop Long-Term Road Test

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2014 Mini Cooper: Second Service Surprises

by Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager on September 28, 2015

2014 Mini Cooper

We are here at Long Beach Mini delivering our 2014 Mini Cooper in the pre-dawn hours on a Thursday morning. This isn't our first time using the early-bird option. I grab an envelope from the neighboring BMW dealership, write in some basic contact information, seal the key inside and place it in the drop-slot back on the Mini side.

There are no surprises on this quiet morning. Those started a week earlier.

A Mini service advisor answered my phone call and I explained that the service light recently came on and that the odometer read around 20,000 miles. I could hear him typing.

"This may come as a surprise, but there are a few recalls for your vehicle," he said. "I'll need time to special-order these parts. And I'll need to keep the car overnight."

We tossed around dates and times until landing on Thursday. I was offered a loaner car during the conversation but declined.

Back to the present. Our Mini service is complete. A porter pulls the car around front and he too has a surprise. The hood-open warning light is on. He mumbles something, tries to latch it a couple of times, hands me the key and vanishes. Three feet later the light returns. I try to close the hood several times before walking back inside.

I explain the issue to my advisor. The lead Mini technician, who happens to be on break within earshot, replies, "This happens sometimes. It is a quick fix. The hood just needs to be realigned. May I have the key?"

No more than five minutes pass and he returns with a smile. "All set. Have a nice weekend."

Here is a list of the recall campaigns addressed in addition to the basic oil and filter change:

11 05 15 — Replace oil filter housing assembly.
51 09 14 — Retrofit foam rubber shims for side impact performance.
51 04 14 — Retrofit structural molded foam parts, crash pads.
71 01 15 — Replace VIN and tire labels.

The repair order has more surprises. On the final page, I read, "Customer states the front wiper blades streaking" and "customer states the rear wiper blade streaking." I did not say either. Sounds like an issue between BMW, this dealership and the free maintenance plan.

We get a new set of wipers from the deal and hopefully, no more surprises.

Total Cost: $0

Total Days out of Service: None

Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 21,372 miles


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