NEW FOR 2013:

– All-new model.

Mini is on something of a product bender. After launching the Countryman compact crossover in 2011, it doubled down adding the Coupe and Roadster last year. For 2013, there’s yet another addition to the range. It’s called the Paceman, and it’s unlike anything we’ve ever seen before.

OK, that’s not quite true: BMW had great success with the X5 Sport Activity Vehicle and followed it up with the sleeker, coupe-inspired X6. The Paceman is much the same, only this Mini’s version actually has two pillarless doors like a real coupe. In addition the Paceman gets a unique tailgate, rear lights, and thanks to its lower overall body height has a lower centre of gravity. Inside the cabin is identical to the Countryman other than the window switches – they’ve moved to the doors.

The Cooper Paceman is offered with a 1.6-litre 121-hp four-cylinder engine mated to either a six-speed manual or a six-speed auto.

There’s also the Cooper S which features a turbo’d version of the same motor that’s good for 181 hp and 192 lb-ft of torque. It comes standard with Mini’s ALL4 all-wheel-drive system. Under normal driving conditions, up to 50 per cent of the engine’s power goes to the rear wheels, with up to 100 per cent to the rear under extreme conditions when necessary. Both manual and automatic are offered.

Topping the lineup is the Cooper S John Cooper Works which features an upgraded version of the S’ motor – it develops 208 hp and 192 lb-ft of torque, which is enough to propel the crossover to 100 km/h in 6.9 seconds. ALL4 all-wheel drive comes standard, and both transmissions are offered.

Features on the Cooper Paceman include 17-inch alloy wheels, air conditioning, roof rails, power mirrors, chrome door handles, leatherette upholstery, manual seat adjustment, sport and rear seats, 50/50 split-folding rear seat, single exhaust tip, tilt and telescopic multi-function steering wheel, cruise control, auto up/down windows, luggage compartment light, keyless entry with pushbutton start, rear wiper, vanity mirrors, centre aluminum storage rail, trip computer, AM/FM/CD/MP3 stereo with auxiliary input, and satellite radio pre-wiring.

The Cooper S models add rear spoiler, lower front air scoop, dark anthracite interior surfaces, double exhaust tips, and stainless steel pedals.

JCW models also feature bespoke sports seats, sports steering wheel, electronic locking differential, Piano Black interior trim, bi-xenon headlamps, front foglights, anthracite roof liner, dark coloured dials for the speedometer and rev counter, sports suspension with 10 mm lower ride height, larger anti-roll bars, stiffer springs, 18-inch wheels, red brake calipers, and a Sport button which tweaks the engine’s throttle response and gives the exhaust a more aggressive sound.

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