2014 Mini Cooper: Tire Wear After 20,000 Miles
by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on August 27, 2015
I happened to look at our 2014 Mini Cooper's Continental ContiSportContact 3 summer tires not long ago (run-flat). The front tires looked a lot more worn down than the rears and I wondered how much life they had left since we recently passed 20,000 miles.
It was time to investigate further.
Looking closer, I realized none of the Mini's tires are down to the wear bars yet. According to a TireRack article, the wear bars indicate the legal minimum tread depth of 2/32-inch (TireRack also recommends additional minimum depth for wet or snowy conditions.)
Since I have a tread depth gauge, I used it to measure the remaining tread. The front tires measured 6/32 and the rears measured 8/32.
So, they still have life in them. But the increased wear on the fronts initially seemed a little odd to me. On one hand, some extra wear on the fronts is expected given it's a sport-oriented, front-wheel-drive car. On the other hand, maintenance-based tire rotations are supposed to keep your tires wearing evenly.
Looking back at our service history, our Mini has been to the dealer just once at the 10,000-mile service. The tires weren't rotated during that visit. Presumably the front tire wear we're seeing is based on the full 20,000 miles we've driven. I find that a little interesting since most other cars include tire rotations with scheduled the oil changes.
The Mini's next service is coming up in just a few hundred miles. We'll have to ask about it then.