NEW FOR 2014:
– All-new model
The iconic Mini Cooper enters its third generation for 2014, bigger, more spacious, more efficient, and perhaps most importantly for BMW, more accessible to the masses. It switches to a brand new platform dubbed UKL that will also be used on a number of upcoming BMW products, ensuring a drive that’s more refined and comfortable but just as entertaining.
The latest Mini is very much a mini-BMW. The re-worked cabin has a more conventional design with materials that are on par with the BMW 2 Series and 3 Series, but it isn’t without whimsical touches. Nifty details including a glowing ring around the main infotainment system that lights up when you adjust the HVAC controls and stereo. It can even double as a giant rev counter to display RPMs to the cabin.
There’s also big news under the hood. The base Cooper receives a brand new 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbocharged engine; while it’s down a cylinder from last year’s model, it offers up more power (134 hp) and a lot more torque (162 lb-ft). With standard-fit auto stop-start, it’s considerably more efficient, too. Much the same can be said about the Cooper S which migrates over to an all-new 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo motor. It develops 189 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque. Both engines can be had with either a six-speed manual with rev-matching downshift or an optional six-speed automatic.
The John Cooper Works variant is temporarily on hiatus – it should return within a year or two.
There are plenty of ‘big car’ features too, including adaptive dampers, Driving Assistant collision mitigation and auto-brake system, and BMW’s iDrive to control the infotainment system, and a near-endless array of exterior and interior options for personalization.
As far as small cars go, the Mini Cooper is generously equipped with air conditioning, power windows, keyless entry, power mirrors, 16-inch alloy wheels, Driving Experience settings with Normal, Sport, and Green modes, six-way manually adjustable front seats, leatherette upholstery, 60/40 split rear folding seat, air conditioning, keyless entry, toggle-switch start, leather-wrapped steering wheel, tilt and telescoping steering column, ambient interior lighting, rear spoiler, body-colour fuel filler flap, chrome exterior trim, and a single chrome exhaust pipe.
The Cooper S builds on the Cooper with sports seats with thigh extension and adjustable lumbar support, dual centre-mounted exhaust pipes, chrome fuel filler cap, and Performance Control with torque-steer mitigation.
Key options for both Cooper and Cooper S include adjustable dampers, proximity key functionality, Driving Assistant, sports suspension, 17-inch and 18-inch alloy wheels, alarm system, panoramic sunroof, hood stripes, contrast colour roof and mirrors, rear parking sensors, satellite radio, Harman Kardon upgrade stereo, LED headlights, navigation, cloth upholstery, leather upholstery.