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MINI Cooper

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Comments

  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    It's common in nmany small engines with short exhaust systems.

    As for the Solstice, watch this site's head-to-head review of it versus the 2006 Miata/MX-5. (on the right of this page, actually) The MX-5 wins by a small margin in every cateogry, including price/availability. If you really want a roadster, though, I'd suggest getting a used SLK with the V6 in it or a couple of year old S2000 - both are worlds better vehicles.

    As for the Cooper... next year will see more options a ~140-150HP midrange option. I'm just hoping they don't plastic-ify and bubble-mobile the thing. The prototypes/spy photos show a much larger, less "cute" vehicle. I have this awful feeling that it'll be a $20K BMW Honda Fit/Peugeot clone. They should just make the car as-is of the next decade or two instead of messing with it.
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    Not so sure we'll see the 140 HP engine in the MC; the new BMW engine comes in three flavors, and the MC may still get the lowest (about 110 HP) variation. The 140 HP version may not make it into the MC, or it may not make it into the MC next year; I don't think anyone knows for sure yet. I have a sneaky suspicion it won't, but that's only a guess.

    I also doubt there'll be any radical changes on the Mini's exterior; the most notable will be the different grill (Which was mandated by European pedestrian laws). The Mules have all been heavily cladded for disguise, but when it's all said and done, I doubt the knew Mini's will be all that different on the exterior. Now the new special edition models that will be coming out is a whole different story--the new platform should allow for some fairly interesting variations.

    I have a 2006 MCS on the way; I really don't want to mess with a brand new car, brand new engine, in a first year production model. Maybe down the road (by then BMW will hopefully have the new twin turbo perfected), but I really want the supercharger. The tritec may not be the most sophisticated engine at this point, but it's still a very nice powerplant, the supercharged version has one a number of awards, and it pretty much has all the bugs worked out of it. I have to admit, I'm still eagerly anticipating the 2007's though.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    good post cct1. I'm in the same boat with my 2004. No, the Tritec isn't the most sophisticated engine out there, but it's robust and has a lot of character. In some ways, it makes the car unique in the same way that the flat-four VW engine made the bug unique - I don't think the Mini would be as engaging with a Honda engine. And the MCS really has a nice swell of engine power in the mid-range with excellent throttle response that is perfectly matched to the chassis and limitations of FWD. More power would be nice, but in many ways, the MCS reminds me of the balance of the original Miata.

    We'll see about the new engine. The big thing I'm looking for is better fuel economy - this is the one thing the Tritec really sucks on right now - there is no way a tiny 170-hp car like the MCS should be getting in the low-20's which is what a lot of us are doing much of the time. I've got a SUV which is almost twice as heavy as my Mini and the Mini only gets 30% better mileage in exactly the same driving. That's ridiculous.

    Like all BMWs, I would avoid the first year or two of a major re-design. This puts my upgrade decision off until late 2007 at best, and a lot of things can change between now and then. But I fully expect to be enjoying my 2004 throughout the interim.

    - Mark
  • mwalkmwalk Posts: 1
    I'm considering a MCS. Driven a new one at the dealers twice and love it. However, I'm conerned about the Road and Track long term use rating reliability "poor" and about the many problems posted here and on other forums about problems. I'm used to Honda (5 years with 2 autos 80K each with not a single problem) and don't expect the same, but pretty close. So, given that problems are mentioned more often than praise, how many of you have experience with 1 to 3 years of ownership with no or minimal problems? Thanks
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    That's exactly why I'm getting a 2006. The bugs have dramatically improved since the first two years the car was out--the 2002's, and to a lesser extent, the 2003's, had major issues. And I agree with Mark, stay away from the initial 2007's--it may be like 2002 all over again (I doubt it will be quite as bad, but I don't see the 2007's being anywhere near the 2006's for reliability).

    On other boards, your question has been asked numerous times--and the feeling I get is that from 2004 on up, the Mini has gotten much, much better (Yo-yo, stumble, frequent breakdowns, squeaks, rattles, etc. seen on the earlier models appear to dramatically decreased in frequency). Is it going to be in the same league as a Honda with regard to reliability? No, but on the other hand my wife has a honda now--and all we've had is problems with it (although we did have a civic about 6 years ago--that was one great car!).

    For me, the Mini is a second car; I'm keeping my SUV, but hopefully won't be driving it much. My mini dealer is 45 minutes away; I would be a little leery of the Mini as my only vehicle if the dealer was far away, even though my perception is the reliability of the car is much improved. So if you have a good dealer that's not too far away, I'd go for it, wether it's your only car or second car--there are enough problem free Mini S's to justify it in this situation. However, if this will be your only car and your dealer isn't the greatest, or it's far away, as much as I love the Mini, then I would be careful, and would consider something else.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    My anecdotal experience with my twenty-month-old 2004 MCS is that I've had basically one problem - the infamous "steering clicking" problem. The dealer has replaced the rack but I think it's the column. But the problem is fairly minor so it may not be worth worrying too much about.

    The reliabilty of the MC has steadily improved during the current production run, but it is not going to match a small Honda, or any Japanese car for that matter. The data shows that you might expect 2x or 3x the number of problems with something like a Civic. The data we have has a pretty long "memory" so I don't think the Mini is quite as bad as some reports suggest. But again, no match for a Toyota.

    I don't think the Mini is much (if any worse) than a VW, Audi, or BMW though. The only way you're going to really get much better reliability is with an Asian car.

    It all depends on how much you like the Mini vs. the competition and how much you get bugged by an occasional problem.

    Final thought: Where's the nearest dealer? A problem car is no big deal with a close-by dealer but can be a nightmare if they're a couple hours away.

    - Mark
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    Follow up on the "are Mini's reliable" question.

    Since the Mini first shipped, Consumer Reports (basically the only organization currently collecting any reliability data from consumers) has given the Mini a "below average" reliability rating which has excluded the car from it's recommended list.

    In the most current issue, they've published some updates, and Mini has improved to average and is now a recommended car. This is pretty strong evidence that, while it may not match Honda or Toyota reliability, it's improving with every year of the current design, and is now an easy match for virtually any European car and most American cars.

    Good news for late-model Mini owners.

    - Mark
  • My Brother-in-law purchase the new Solstice and these are his exact words; Says its a great little car however he said he getting rid of it and buying another Miata and to me I keep telling him to get guts and buy a Mini . lol
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    The other advantage the Mini has is silly high resale value - just don't experct a dime back for options. If he wants something sporty, though, the RX-8 is better than the Miata or Mini. I test-drove all of the small semi-sporty coupes and roadsters and the RX-8 was at the top.

    The Mini S - about 3rd place, mostly because it's plainly overpriced. The Base Mini, though, is a nice car for the money.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    It's all subjective, but I disagree about the MCS being overpriced compared to the Mini - I can't think of another car where $3600 buys such a huge increment in performance (almost 50% more power) and features. IMHO, the value-leader in the Mini line is the base S coupe for about $21K.

    And since the MCS is much more popular in the used market, you'd get all or nearly all of the extra back when you sell in a few years. Unless you are sensitive to initial cost or fuel mileage, I view it as a no-brainer to get the MCS.

    - Mark
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    Yeah, I'd echo Mark. Now if you want to argue the JCW upgrade is overrpriced, then you have an argument....
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    Yes, I agree, the $3600 bump from the MC to MSC gets nearly a 50% boost in power, but the next 25% costs nearly double this amount.

    Further, I'm don't think a JCW MCS is really a better overall package than the MCS. Getting that 207-hp to the pavement in a light FWD chassis is no picnic and with this much power and LSD, torque steer rears it's ugly head, something that is virtually (and pleasantly) nearly non-existent in the non-LSD MCS.

    - Mark
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 27,876
    My local dealer had a JCW MCS on the lot... had just about every available carbon fiber extra...

    Total price: $48K!!

    Makes a loaded $28K MCS look positively cheap....

    MODERATOR
    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    So I've got $48K in my pocket and I can buy either this souped up JCW MCS or a new M3. Wow, that's a tough one. ;-)

    - Mark
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 27,876
    Yeah.... but, everybody has an M3.. You'd be the only one with a $48K MINI... ;)

    MODERATOR
    Prices Paid, Lease Questions, SUVs

  • I agree with ya execept thank goodness its not a new Ford coming out for then I would wait like 3 years to see if it was reliable. LOL
  • HP jumped 20 or more. I love the current one, wouldn't change a hair on it!

    I doubt the next one will be a near-perfect as the current one. It will have more versions, but that may dilute it's unique appeal. :cry:

    DrFill
  • According to Autoexpress, the same engine used in Peugot/Citorens is expected to crank out 180HP, vs the 170 that is targeted in Cooper S. The base version's HP is going up though, to 143 BHP. There have ben mixed messages about whether the current 110HP tritec engine will be retained as an entry level model for the US models.
    Cheers!!
    --njexpress
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    Not so sure you're going to see the 143 BP in the Base cooper. There are three variants of the engine, and there is a good chance the Base Cooper will have the lowest (Can't remember the exact HP, but it's much closer to 110 than 143) HP engine, for a number of reasons, including devaulation of the previous generation base mini's, as well as not as much seperation between the MC and MCS among them. Time will tell, but I'd be surprised to see 143 in the base Cooper. This engine will find it's way into more vehicles than just the Cooper, and I doubt we'll ever see the 143 version in the Mini.
  • Hmmm... "not as much seperation between the MC and MCS" - That would make sense. I doubt if devaluation of prev. gen minis would be a reason though. Anways, my immediate concern is :confuse: - Rumors are flying that the next gen covertible will not be out until after mid 2007, maybe only ater the traveller comes out. The wait is killing me :mad: I hope it doesn't take that long...
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    Yeah, unfortunately that's the rumored timeline. You should be able to get the "old" version until then though. Do you really want to go with a 2007 though? I'd wait until 2008, IMHO these cars are going to have quite a few bugs the first go around.

    Although less seperation between the MC and MCS is probably the main reason, the devaluation does come into play--BMW has done everything it can to prevent it, and I suspect they will continue to do so--it will allow them to keep prices up. The new (2007) generation will be the first year that they're going to make a profit supposedly off the Mini.
  • kerokero Posts: 1
    I want to purchase a mini cooper s in 2006 but think that if a new model is coming out soon, I would wait for that. My question is: does anyone know the actual estimated date of availability of the 2007 new mini?
  • cct1cct1 Posts: 221
    Fall of 2006, exact date hasn't been announced that I know of.

    There was a rumor that the new engine would find it's way into the last of the 2006's, as a bridge between the body style change; the "new" engine will fit into the "old" design, but just barely (apparently a few cars have been produced this way for testing purposes). I doubt that will happen though...Personally I'd wait a year, for the 2008's before taking the plunge--take a look at Mini's track record with the intial 2002 Mini, and you'll see it took a couple of years to get the bugs out.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    In 8+ months of ownership, the only non-maintenance repair required for our base Cooper CVT (wife's car actually) is a burnt out dome light. And less rattle than my Acura TL. Mind you, we don't put on a pile of miles -- only about 5000 miles in 8 months. But overall we've been pleasantly surprised by the Mini's reliability. So much so that at times I've toyed with the idea of getting an '06 MCS manual tranny for myself. But then....a couple or 3 grand more could get me into a base BMW 3-series, which may be almost as much fun to drive.....
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    I've got a very minor case of the steering wheel column "click" (only in cold weather and only for the first mile or so), but otherwise, no problems whatsoever in 13K miles. And an extremely solid/tight car. No rattles or squeaks whatsoever.

    I wouldn't have two in a family though. Just too one-dimensional a car for that. I'd either go super-duper gas economy (e.g, a Prius) or something a lot more comfortable for trips.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    A second car should be a good highway cruiser. The smart money's on something like a used 4-5 year old Lexus or simmilar. 20K and every luxury option you can think of, plus floats along at 70mph, getting nearly 30mpg.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    My TL is not a bad running mate to the Mini. It's not as comfy as a Lexus, but it's not bad for longer trips. It's just that the Mini is so much more fun and convenient for the daily city jaunts. But my wife drives it to work everyday and I can't use it. :cry:
  • Hi Folks,
    In case you haven't checked it out already, here's the link:
    http://www.edmunds.com/insideline/do/Features/articleId=108466
    Still no clear cut details on the relase date. I have been prowling other forums for more info. I will keep looking...
    Cheers!!
    --njexpress
  • I have a 05 MCS with 15K miles on it and has developed an occasional squeal in 1st gear only (manual tranny) upon initial take up. Have not checked with dealer yet, interested to see if similar experience out there.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    Ugh. Sounds like clutch to me.

    - Mark
This discussion has been closed.