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MINI Cooper: Problems & Solutions



  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    A customer is a fool if they're depending on the salesman to warn them that the nearest Mini dealer is 500 miles away and that getting warranty service could be a big issue.

    - Mark
  • U R Rite!!! I was a fool. So what - I can still tell as many people as I can about Mini's history of critical problems, etc. Really most of my trouble has been with the dealer and it's tech's. I feel that with the number of repeat troubles I've had a good back yard mechanic would have done a better job. I finally got a lawyer to get me an appt. with a factory rep. so we will see.

    BTW I'm not the only fool here - some people have to waste good time not solving things! Just pointing out other's "faults". Again this "E" sounds like an experienced "salesman (woman)"??

    Have a good day unless you have other plans.
  • The same thing happened to my MC S 03 last night. AAA jumped it OK, but today it got the blinky thing going. I'm calling Mini Service in Cincy tomorrow. Tonight I'm purusing the very think manual I bought for $100. I hope it's the battery of course, but we'll see. I'll write again.
  • There is a service bulliten on the throttle body and computer that you may want to consider with the dealer.
  • And ask for Graham. He's a nice bloke! -- G
  • YES!!!!! Just found your posting! We are having same problem with hubby's 2002 Cooper S. Did you figure out what the problem is? The dealer who sold it to us (not a MINI dealer; ours is second hand) can't seem to replicate it, whilst we have no problem doing so.

    Would be interested in hearing your replay.

    Cheers --- G
  • good luck is right1 MINI DEALERS ARE KNOWN FOR 'good luck' PRACTICES. do try meeting with a factory rep. TWO GRAND IS REDICULIOUS! If all fails, and it is reasonably possible - go to an independent garage. They will be lower in $$
  • A reporter seeks to talk with current owners of the Mini Cooper. Please send your daytime contact info and the model year of your vehicle to no later than Wednesday, September 27, 2006.

    Jeannine Fallon
    Corporate Communications

    Karen-Edmunds Community Manager

  • From: Martin Farrell
    Date: 9/ 23/06
    To: Mini Cooper

    Dear Sir,
    I am writing this letter to express my severe disenchantment with both Mini Cooper as a company and their dealership (Prestige Mini NJ, USA).

    I purchased my first Mini S (loaded) for $27,000, less then four months ago.

    On 8/24/06 (11:20 hrs) my Mini S struck a “CAT” on RT 6 in NY. The result was the following:

    1- No alarm sounded indicating my engine was in trouble, or overheating.
    2- After approximately 6 – 7 miles, the red light on the dash finally came on, and I stopped and requested an accident report from the NY State Police ( see report # SP2F88000115).
    3- I drove home (4 miles) to my home, and called Prestige Mini immediately.
    4- The vehicle was towed to Prestige Mini.

    I finally got my car back (28 days later).

    The following chain of events too place.
    1- I called Prestige Mini, and they stated they had a great relationship with State Farm insurance. Two weeks later, I personally had to intercede, in an effort to get State Farm to pay what they described as an “outrageous labor rate”. Worse, once approved, the expert technicians fools you employ, who command this “outrageous labor rate” at Prestige Mini “failed “to check the car properly and totally missed the “warped head” on the vehicle.

    Had I not personally requested that they check the motor, no effort would have been made to ensure both my safety, and to prevent a second return to Mini.

    2- Due to this incompetence, I was forced to wait again for the insurance adjuster from State Farm to arrive. While this transpired, my insurance co (like most) only allows $1,000 in rental fees. In view of the fact that there was an unreasonable delay, I requested a “loaner” from the service manager, who stated yes. When I called to come and pick up the loaner, the assistant service manager stated “no”? I guess $27,000 was not enough!

    3- Two more weeks passed, as I waited for my car (needed to get to work), and I was finally advised (after I called approx: 10 times) it was done!

    Just one small problem, the car needed “just one more part” for the AC unit. I was advised the car would be finally ready this past Friday 9/22/06, but when I called to ensure it was done, I was advised the part did not come in.

    Until this point, I had remained polite, friendly and understanding, especially in view of the fact that the Mini Service Dept. could really put the screws to me.

    Having had enough, I called the service manager, who now advised me the “car was done”, and the “other guy had made a mistake”? Classic incompetence, no!

    In the 37 years I have been driving cars, I have never experienced such incompetence, wasted time, and have never been so inconvenienced by any car dealer, except yours.
    Worse, I have used State Farm for 28 yrs, and never, had any problem with them, until I had to deal with Mini Cooper.

    To compound matters, when I did go to get my car, I was left with the distinct impression that they were doing me a favor.

    PS: My wife advised me not to send this e-mail to Mini, because I still need to get the service dept. to sign a “co-pay check”. Don’t want to “piss off the service/billing dept”. In short, I paid on credit card, which I find odd? In view of the fact that State Farm authorized payment for the work.

    I guess Mini cash needs the cash, or being British/German does not “understand” that State Farm guaranteed their almighty dollar.
    All other dealers, I have dealt with, have just said, thank you and out the door I went.

    Needles to say, because I can not trust, or depend on Mini Cooper, I will no longer be “motoring”, or popping the “bonnet”, as Mini Cooper and its dealers have convinced me that their only interest is in selling cars, not customer support.

    Regardless of the fact that I was involved in an auto accident.

    Respectfully Yours
    Martin Farrell
    Warwick NY USA 10990
  • I recieved a reprimand yesterday about sending "contact" info on this site. I would love to "talk" Mini but I'm unable to due to this forums rules?!
  • You weren't "reprimanded". You were advised not to post your phone # and e-mail in a public message board because of threats by software "spiders" that collect e-mails and because of possible invasions to your privacy by telemarketers.

    I strongly advise everyone here to NEVER post your private information in a message box.

    This is why Edmunds created a "profile" for you, as well as the website, which gives you your own mailbox and allows you to regulate whom you communicate with and vice-versa.

    You can consult your membership agreement or e-mail me if you need help with the rules about privacy or conduct issues.


  • I'm with MINI USA. I've passed this message on to a MINI National Customer Relations Representative who will be in touch with you soon.
  • Dear Sir,
    I thank you for your concern, but Mini International and Prestige Mini of NJ could care less, as both have taken the position that this is an “uncommon problem”. Their total disregard of the facts is almost unbelievable. This is caused by the fact, that their primary concern is sales and not service. They both failed to ask for the physical evidence (phone records, dealer records, Insurance Co. records).

    1- They fail to acknowledge that a 28 day turn around for a damaged vehicle is unacceptable.
    2- They fail to acknowledge that the engine was never examined for two weeks. When they finally did examine the engine, the damage was discovered, and they again called State Farm. This fact caused a massive delay, when State Farm was forced to return a second time.
    3- They failed to acknowledge the fact that I personally had to intercede with both the service dept. and the insurance company to get anything done.
    4- Worse yet, they fail to acknowledge that the car was running poorly (rough), once it was returned to me. (From the factory, the car ran great, all the time. Once returned from the dealer, it was very rough on initial start up, and when the RPM would drop at stop lights). If I returned again to the service department, I feared another 28 day delay.
    5- They still do not understand what a co-pay check is! Their almighty dollar was guaranteed.
    6- Every other car company/dealer I have every dealt with, always had a loaner car, or rental car on hand. Not Prestige Mini.

    In closing, I must admit that the Mini S (dollar for dollar) is possibly one of the finest cars ever made. However, if you work for a living (mortgage, kids in college), then Mini is not for you. Mini International’s response to me implied that this was an “uncommon problem”. Well, if the dealer only knows how to do oil changes and tire rotations in a timely fashion, then I guess it is “uncommon”. But if you need “real repair”, you can not depend on Mini International/Prestige Mini to manage it in a timely fashion.
    Regards Marty 13
  • Mini admits they have a service problem in NJ, but it's much more then coffee and the waiting room. They need to get ride of the high end BMW attitude.
    To bad they never admitted this to me. Not one letter/phone call of apology.
    MINI Looks to Improve Service
    Sections: In the Press Aug 26th, 2006
    Service. Ask any MINI owner and you’re likely to hear both good and bad tales. For a brand new car and brand new company it’s certainly an understandable issue. However for BMW and MINI, anything less than good was unacceptable. This week’s Autoweek covers MINI’s effort to make the bad service good and the good service great. Here’s an excerpt:

    “When we first launched, we knew we had had a good brand and purchase experience. But Mini owners felt they were second-class citizens in the service area,” says Richard Steinberg, manager of aftersales and product strategy for Mini, in Woodcliff Lake, N.J. “We were getting dinged by quality at the service level.”

    The shared service areas were a fact of life Mini had to deal with, says Steinberg. “We knew we could not do brick and mortar,” he says. “So we looked at facilities, personnel and branding.”

    Even the waiting area made a difference, he says.

    “A lot of the Mini guys didn’t like waiting in the white-and-gray BMW area watching the BMW guys watching CNN, so they’d wander back into the Mini showroom.”
  • chloefiddle - after my experience with mini cooper, i would look for another car. Marty13
  • Thanks again, but Mini "does not care". Sales is their only concern. $$$$$. If Mini cared, this never would have happened in the first place. marty13
  • Sorry to hear about your problems but we'd like to keep the forum open to solving issues and exhanging information, so once you've posted your complaint a time or two please refrain from "brand-bashing" with a lot of repetitive posts. We appreciate your disappointment and frustration but other people, especially newcomers, need space and time here to present their own issues, and to form their own opinions about the MINI.

    Of course if you make progess with your MINI problems, please let us know the outcome.

  • Sorry, but that's the issue, I have made no progress. I will stay off your site, thanks for the time to vent. Marty
  • good luck Marty, come back anytime and hope something good comes out of all this for you.
  • Please go to the group top level and create a discussion that fits your comments/questions or post in an existing discussion.

    MINI Cooper

    Karen-Edmunds Community Manager

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