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Mini Cooper: BEWARE!!!! There aren't parts ..



  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,476
    They don't make MINIs in the US they make them all in Oxford, England.

    I never had any problems with my MINI and neither has the person I sold it too. Most of the people I know who have a MINI have not had any problems.

    You got a BAD car which can happen to any person with any vehicle.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I would have to agree with what british_rover said. We do own (lease actually) a '05 Cooper Base CVT. So far, aside from regular maintenance, we've only had to replace 2 burnt bulbs, an O2 sensor, and a leaky engine mount, all under warranty. And the car has not had to be kept overnight once for repairs. So, we haven't had a ton of problems with it. Maybe a bit more than with our other car, an Acura TL, but really, not that much more. But having said that, it is still probably a good idea to heed carla6's advice and avoid the first year model.
  • I am a small independent auto dealer specializing in sport and luxury cars. I have no affiliation with Mini USA or BMW. I do like the Mini Cooper very much and have acquired and sold at least 15 Mini S models in the past year or so. Because I have so many Minis I feel qualified to ad to the conversation.
    I have never had a single problem, electrical or otherwise, besides basic maintenance which for the most part has been covered under the free maintenance program. My Minis have ranged from 800 miles to 30,000 miles.
    I do not doubt that some of the writers have had problems with their Minis which is a shame. But you would think if there were significant electrical or other problems I would have encountered some of these problems with the 15+ Minis that I have driven and sold. I keep in touch with my customers and I have never heard from any of them about problems with their Minis. I currently have 5 beautiful Mini S models for sale but believe me I would not acquire any more if there were significant problems. I have found the Mini S to be a very reliable and fun car that the consumers seem to love.
  • Hi, since I read your reply here, it made me feel much better and more confident to buy MINI cooper S 2007. I just love it since I tested drive. It will be my first car so that I need to make sure it is reliable. I use for commute so that I don't have a second car.

    Since I have been into this forum, mostly I found only the problems occured with this model car. But I've hardly seen any good or support comments of owners.

    If you have any suggestion to me pls light up the way for me. I will be appreciated. If you have your own business website, pls let me know. I 'll check it out. Thank you very much.
  • There are many websites that have started up for people to express their disatisfaction with their cars and local dealerships. I have seen them for just about every car make. It doesn't matter if it is a Mercedes, BMW, Lexus, Mini, Toyota, Honda or all the domestic makes.
    Most of these people complaining I am sure have legitimate complaints. But I have also seen consumers have complaints that are unjustified and unreasonable. One person even wanted Mini USA to reimburse him because he wanted to take his Mini to his mechanic because he no longer trusted the Mini dealer. That is an unreasonable expectation.
    To find positive comments or reviews from the public you will have to go to websites like Edmund's and look under reviews. They usually will have a long list of positive as well as any negatives. There are other sites as well.
    My local Mini dealer is part of the local BMW dealership. They have given me excellent service. They give me a free loaner if they have to keep the car overnight and they will sometimes do the warranty service while I wait.
    I wouldn't be afraid to purchase a new '07 Mini or even a nice low mile used one. I have had great luck with all of mine and I have many happy customers. Good luck with your new Mini.
  • We have an 06 S Conv for a bit more than a year now with 7k miles. Here are some cons and pros of owning a MINI:


    1. When we took delivery of the car we notice the big gap between the bonnett and the main frame, then we checked out other MINIs on the lot, they are all the same. Contacted our dealership and MINIusa to see if they can adjust it. Told us we have to pay for it. I finally got mine adjusted at a local body shop.

    2. I have notice an increasing noise under the hood recently. Much lounder than our lexus and honda.

    3. The factory maintance is a bit weird, especially if you own the car and plan to keep it in a long run. Other mfg suggest the first oil change in 5k, but our local MINI dealership won't change the oil till the 'oil meter' reachs below 1k, still have 3k+ left, so that brings the first oil change at about 10k+. Not sure if it's a good way to maintain the car.

    4. Paint chips, the shape of the hood made it weak against flying rocks on the freeways. I have 2 big ones and 5 smaller chips already. Although, i tried to keep distance with the cars at the front.


    1. Of course, the cute looks. I bet you get more eye balls than any conv Benz or BMW in a MINI.

    2. Fun to drive, just like a little GO cart.

    3. Easy to park.

    4. Haven't test its resell value yet. But my 71 MINI is worth 2x more than I paid 5 years ago. Can't beat that. :o)
  • As far as the paint chips, did you get a clear bra put on the bonnet?? I did and hope that it makes the difference. So far so good after 5 months...I am curious if others have had good luck with the bras.
  • I bought one on ebay and it does not fit perfectly.
    Asked the local detailers, they charge about 200-300 for the job. Decided not to go for it: 1. it doesn't look too good. 2. it won't last more than a year. probably cost less to repaint the hood after couple times.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Hmm....we have not suffered any paint chip on our '05, but then we almost never drive it on the highway.

    I didn't think you can eliminate the gap between the bonnet (hood) and the fender. That's always a problem with a clamshell style of hood. IMO, the '07 is even a worse problem because the hood edge follows the curve of the wheel well opening, so you see the gap along the whole edge. Almost looks like the hood is ajar! :sick:
  • minisfminisf Posts: 2
    Well, I thought I'd post here since there are some critical comments of the MINI and prospective purchasers might see them and assume the car is not any good.

    I researched the heck out of the MINI before getting my used 2006 cabriolet [non-S] a few weeks ago. Mine has the five speed manual, cold weather package, leather interior, premium sound, silver interior package, lights package, and a host of other options.

    Yes, avoid any model older than 2005, with the CVT [or automatic transmission.]
    Based on all the negatives I saw, I decided to look for a 2005 or later, with a manual transmission.

    As timing would have it, the 2008 Consumer Reports Annual Auto issue came out just before I bought and was conducting research. The MINI did quite well in the ratings. In fact, the MINI got red donuts which means above-average in terms of reliability.

    I do recommend buying as late a model as you can afford and to get one with some manufacturer's warranty remaining [not those bogus extended warranties, but the MINI warranty.] Mine has two years and 27,000 miles left on the warranty so that is a comfort.

    This last weekend I put the car through its paces and gave it a wash and wax. Also scrubbed the interior and conditioned it.

    So far I have not found a thing wrong with it. So after 23,000 miles I can report the car appears problem free. It shifts perfect, all electronics work, the climate control works, the car runs straight, it does not rattle, etc.

    Yes, there are some cars, no matter the brand, that will malfunction or that have their share of problems, but that exists in any car. I have seen sites badmouth Honda Accords, Toyota Camrys, and Mercedes Benz.

    On my BMW 740i that I paid almost $80k for, a fuel leak developed in the engine compartment. Fuel was dripping on a hot exhaust manifold. It took two trips to the dealer to have it fixed under warranty. No, I did not think that BMWs are crap and that my experience meant BMWs should be avoided, even after my 325i needed a new radiator at a cost of $600.

    And before my BMW I had a Mercedes SL. After it ran out of warranty, that car cost me about $2500 in repairs every 8 months or so. And before that I had a Mercedes sedan that blew a turbo and also needed a new transmission.

    After my SL personally I did decide to never buy Mercedes again as I had the most trouble with that brand.

    I mention all of the above to emphasize that some people posting their negative MINI experiences does not mean that the MINI is a lemon or flawed vehicle. Here in San Francisco I see a lot of MINIs on the road and not in the shop.
  • xfloverxflover Posts: 2
    I have a 2003 Mini that is mint, I had more issues with my 06 civic then my current mini, I just ordered a 08 mini and I know that most of them have no major issues, its always a friend, or cousin....never first hand accounts....

    I love my mini and cant wait till the next on is in port!
  • coupahcoupah Posts: 18
    Well nextime, roll the windows UP and CLOSE the roof!
  • I'm getting ready to take delivery of my 09 Mini that I ordered back in August 08.
    How reliable are these cars? I see a lot of negative and I don't want a car that ends up in the shop immediately after I own it. All Mini's can not be bad cars, tell me it's not so!
  • I have an 07 mini cooper S Convt. it took 3 months to get it. I special ordered everything in that car. Ordered it Feb 07 and picked it up at the dealership May 07. One year and 5 months later the car has 12,400 miles and to date, NO COMPLAINTS or problems whatsoever. NO WORRIES!! Enjoy it and have FUN!!
  • carla6carla6 Posts: 8
    When I first got my special ordered '07, I did have some initial issues with the electical system (warning lights randomly going and staying on) and I had to have a part replaced under the hood. It was very stressful and concerning, BUT after those 'glitches' got fixed (and it's been about a year), I have had no problems at all. It runs like a dream. I am crazy about the little car! When I was experiencing the problems with the electrical items, my mechanic told me that certain 'changes' that were made in the '07s had added to the challenge of figuring things out on the mechanics end, for what it's worth. I hope you have no issues and can get straight to the smooth is a FUN car to drive.
  • Just wanted to chime in and give my experience. I have an 02 Mini which is my daily driver (both highway and city driving). I currently have 138k miles on it and the only repair (other than normal maintenance) needed to date is replacing the rear hubs. The left wheel bearing started making noise at about 100K miles. I had both the left and right replaced. Fairly inexpensive and quick repair. I know others with newer models and they have had little to no problems as well.

    I smile everyday I climb in it! Enjoy!!!

    P.S. I test drove an 09 last week... I'll order a new one as soon as I can bring myself to part with this one.
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