This Mini Cooper video review includes information about the redesigned Hardtop 2-Door model. We discuss pricing, fuel economy, available engines and features, interior space, cargo room and the Mini Connected electronics interface.
If you're considering a Mini Cooper, there's a good chance you've already fallen for its looks and the fact it's still pretty cool after all these years. But, there's a lot more to this all-new Mini than just cute styling, white roofs and nimble handling.
Let's start inside where the materials have been improved and everything is less toylike. The speedometer has also moved to behind the wheel rather than the big pie-shaped bit in the center. That is now solely home to the more sensibly designed stereo, or Mini's optional version of BMW's iDrive interface known as Mini Connected. Unfortunately, the controller's placement makes it very awkward to use.
Despite what many think, the Mini actually provides plenty of front leg- and headroom for even those taller than 6 feet. The backseat and trunk are in fact tiny, and even though they did grow a bit for 2015, it's not really enough to make a difference. And that's fine, this is a Mini after all.
There are two new engines. The base engine is a turbocharged three-cylinder that has substantially more torque than the old engine and a nice growly engine note that perfectly matches the Mini's scrappy character. You won't be disappointed by it, but then the Cooper S model and its turbo-4 has more power and way more torque as well. Better yet, both engines are more efficient.
Happily, despite growing in size, the Mini Cooper is still the sharp, nimble little car that'll make you smile going around a corner, zipping through traffic or motoring up a mountain road. Unfortunately, it also has a ride that can really beat you up. We got the 17-inch wheels, but we doubt that the 15s or 16s would really make that much of a difference.
Then there's the price. At about $20,000, its base price is reasonable for what is indeed a premium product. But once you start selecting common options and throw on a couple obligatory customization features, it gets pricey quickly. This non-S Cooper is $33,000. That's crazy.
So there are significant issues with the new Mini Cooper, and although it still has plenty of charms that tug on your heart strings, we recommend thoroughly cross-shopping its competitors before signing on the dotted line.