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MINI Cooper



  • Thanks for the insight hpulley4. I would hate to get the car, and then regret it in a February snow storm.
  • 5000 mile oil changes is an overkill. The oil companies and oil changing companies are selling us on that garbage so we buy more oil and more changes. 10,000-12,000 is plenty good enough. 7,500 if you feel especially paranoid.

    How Mini gets up to 15,000 I don't know...I think 15,000 would be pushing most cars and most oil products. The synthetic oil though can handle higher temperatures before breaking down because they are a "purer" product...I'm sure you've seen the commericials. Funny how when the manufacturer pays for the oil change it can go 15,000 miles but when the consumer pays for it, it only lasts 5,000....I call that captalism.
  • crcoxecrcoxe Posts: 72
    If MINI does come out with a soft top, and perhaps a 4-door model, they could do some serious damage to the VW market share in the US. And I could get even longer items in the back!!! (Yes, the 8' chair rail was solid pine - ran it all the way from the closed hatch to the floor on the passenger side)

    FYI - I just got back from a road trip and averaged around 35 mpg and squeezed out over 450 miles on one tank of gas (93 octane). City mileage is still a little less than expected from such a small car, but I was happy with the MC's performance on the long haul. Speaking of gas, MINI suggests running premium only. My dealer said it really doesn't matter, but I am hesitant to go less than 93 octane based on my limited knowledge of these things. Any suggestions?
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    And with modern knock&ping sensors even 87 probably wouldn't damage the car but I'm running with at least 91 here so the computer doesn't have to retard the timing to avoid knocks&pings.

    Wow, that's great mileage! The best I've got on a tank so far was 7.0L/100km which is 40MPG in our English gallons or around 31MPG in US gallons if my calculations are correct. You're right about city mileage being harder on it -- if you really drive it hard the mileage drops a fair bit.

    I've found the gas mileage is a bit better with 91 than with the 93/94 stuff but that might be because all the 93/94 stuff I've tried so far has had 10% ethanol which doesn't pack as much energy as gas by volume.
  • segestasegesta Posts: 27
    Remember, running cheaper gas means you may get worse gas mileage, thus negating the lower cost of the cheaper gas. Just a thought.

    And I have only been getting 32 mpg on the highway, never as high as 35. Good work, crcoxe (but then, I wonder if at 75 - 80 mph the Mini's aerodynamics start to work against it... I should try a highway trip at 60 - 65, if I can stand it, and see if my mileage improves).

    Finally, I think the Mini schedule is 10,000 miles for the first oil change, not 15,000.
  • crcoxecrcoxe Posts: 72
    We had the cruise set at 75 the whole way, but most of the time it was cool enough to keep the A/C off, which of course helps mileage. My mileage number is from the trip computer. I didn't do the math myself, so it's possible the computer was a little off. I'll still say I got 35 mpg though. By the way, I don't think I could stand it at 60 either.

    And yes, the first service (including oil) is at 10,000. Every 15,000 thereafter.
  • Hi Guys,

    Are dealers still extracting premiums on car sold these days. When I originally ordered in the spring the dealer nicked me for an additional $550 fee. Is that still happening around the country?

  • mgreene1mgreene1 Posts: 116
    My local Mini dealer is adding a required package ($595 for Mini and $795 for Mini S), but dealers out of state will sell at MSRP with a longer wait (about 6 months). I've ordered a Mini S locally and will give the devil his due, mainly because I'm an impatient [non-permissible content removed], and some of that extra cost is what I want anyway in accesories, except for the worthless paint and sealant protection. ;)
  • footiefootie Posts: 636
    I have been watching ebay auctions for Mini's for the past few months. It seems to me that there are more and more showing up 'truly used' 4K, 5K miles on them. Also the premiums are just about gone. For the first time in the last few weeks, cars aren't meeting reserves and going unsold in the auction.

    Maybe the 'new' and 'buzz' is wearing off.
  • rickroverrickrover Posts: 602
    My MINI dealer has their cars delivered to the BMW dealer. I was in getting the oil changed on my X5 and wandered onto the back lot while I was waiting to see what was there. I saw 20 MINI's and 14 of them were S.
  • What has been your experience driving long distances in your MINI? Comfortable? Do you have the standard seats or leather seats with 2-way adjustable lumbar support?
  • I've done 2 hour trips in it no problem. I test drove standard and sport seats and much prefer the sport seats, though mine are just leatherette so mine don't have the lumbar support but I don't think I'm missing anything. I have the heaters which are nice for warmth or a massage.
  • stryderstryder Posts: 140
    I drove a 4 hour trip, 8 1/2 each way round trip twice (two different directions) and a 1 1/2 each way round trip. I found it especially compfy, and I have standard leather seats. As I got more towards the middle of the drive I would move the seat farther back so my legs could strech out (I have a tendancy to drive close to the wheel for better control) and depending on the time, I would ocasionally drive without shoes. (something I have never done before). For whatever reason, there's little toe space in the footwell, so I end up hitting the pedals very sideways, which becomes much easier with either small sneakers (converse allstars) or socks.

    Random thought: (I haven't posted in a while, but I've noticed this for a while) Why is it that refuses to actually call the car a MINI and instead calls it a Mini? I realize its a MINI just because BMW decided it should be to distinguish from the previous model, but if you're going to oblidge BMW and HUMMER, as well as looking at the badge on the car, shouldn't it be listed correctly?
  • I've been on a waiting list in VA since March. My sister knows someone who just walked in to a dealer near her and bought one off the lot. I called and have ordered one from them. So I have to visit my sister to pick up the car, not such a sacrifice. I've driven several MC and the MCS twice. I settled on a 2003 MCS in White over Yellow, Sport Package, but with 16" wheels. I don't like the look of the 17" and think the 16" are better in snow. Now the waiting begins. I'm told it will be late October, but that's better than the March '03 date in VA. I'm paying MSRP and not a cent more.
  • footiefootie Posts: 636
    What dealership did you go with?
  • I was thinking of buying a Mini but the articles I've read about the recalls have me a bit spooked.
    (Also, local dealers are still playing games charging more than MSRP!)

    Those of you who have Minis, what problems have you had to endure due to the recall or due to other quality problems?

  • stryderstryder Posts: 140
    I haven't had any problems with my car besides a loose rear grab handle, I got the recall done (courtesy of info from MINI2 and the wall street journal) well before it was official, so that avoided it actually breaking (I think the official notice was it was about 3500 cars in the US it affected, who knows how many actually broke before the recall). If you actually look around, the vast majority of people have only had minor problems with their cars, those who had really early cars that were seriously broken have been replaced. Certainly they're not approaching the quality of a Toyota, but its not generally horrible, and everything that's been a real issue has been fixed at the factory for new cars. As far as charging more then MSRP, depending if you want a Cooper or an S, you may have to wait a bit, but plenty of dealers around the country will only charge MSRP, and then you'll have a roadtrip to pickup your car and save lots.
  • The top of the back of the driver's seat popped off and wouldn't stay on. The dealer replaced it. The replacement is also off a bit but I guess that's the way it is (haven't asked for a second replacement yet, not sure I will as the new back is just off a bit, probably only I would notice). I guess I could ask for a whole new seat but right now I'm not worried about it.

    I got the gearbox fix done as a precaution. It didn't go on me or anything during 6700km of driving. The take the battery out when they do this fix and they were a bit sloppy about it, forgetting to reset my clock and not putting the battery box lid on properly. Not what I expected of a MINI/BMW service department. I complained about it, they fixed the lid for me no problem but I hope the next time I'm there (hopefully for nothing but the oil change) will be better. They didn't even give me a free coffee mug or anything and I left my old "GM Goodwrench" mug in the car as a hint too! ;-)

    So, for a first-year car (mine was built in February) I'd say one interior issue and one recall is not bad. Time will tell how well it holds up over years of service. Newer cars (built May and later) have new gear linkage and seat designs so supposedly those problems are not found in recent deliveries.

    It is still a wonderfully fun car to drive over 4 months later (too much fun, perhaps, as I really learn where the edge is while cornering), it still gets admiring looks from owners of cars costing 2-4 times as much and interesting questions from strangers in gas stations and mall parking lots.
  • on the road yeasterday. There seems to be 4 or 5 Coopers in my area (one a couple blocks from my house) and now this S. It still had the temp tag on it.

    Hpulley - I'm on my 4th BMW - You will never get a freebee from a BMW dealer, you'll pay for everything, and their service techs are hit and miss as well. If you run accross a good service tech you can request that they only let him work on your car. I have a favorite tech at my BMW dealer - he is the only guy that touches my X5.
  • The BMW service consultant mentioned how 10/10 is a pass and 9/10 is a failure on the JD Power Surveys but they need to pay attention to details if they really want 10/10! Our other car is a Saturn and so far I know why they are rated #1 for service!

    Had a look at the last-year of Saturn's 'original' SC2 coupe while I was looking into the MINI but it is just too old tech. now and the new ION replacement just wasn't attractive either (beam-axle rear suspension, rear drum brakes, yucky interior). If only BWM/MINI could learn a thing or two about service they might get that 10/10 they desire...
  • In my experience BMW dealers only pay lip service to JD Power and C.S. scores. It's obvious they only go through the motions and don't have the slightest intention of "dazzling" the customer. I get the "take it or leave it" message loud and clear from sales to service at my BMW dealer. My friends and business associates that drive Bimmers have similar opinions. No big deal - just an annoyance that I have to put up with, it wouldn't keep me from owning a BMW.

    My customer survey's always reflect my dealer experiences by the way.
  • I bought thru Mini of the Hamptons in Southampton, NY. They seem to have a lot of cars available, but all are loaded. As a serious Honda fan, I too considered carefully before straying from the safety of Japanese quality. But after careful reading of several Mini owner websites I decided that the overall assembly quality (for a totally new vehicle) was pretty good and getting better with each passing month. Regarding recalls, none appear to required serious redesigning of systems. I also note that Mercedes and BMW too have their share of recalls. Today all cars are so complex that things do need to be corrected after the fact. What would scare me away would be serious engine, tranny or electrical problems. I note that the Mercedes SUV has had these sorts of problems. IMO for a new car the Mini does very well.
  • has anyone put carseats in the back of their mini?
    any problems?
  • We have an Evenflo Odyssey 5-point Comfort-touch seat for our 17-month old son (we've used it since April) and it fits fine. It is an old seat-belt style one, not one of the new LATCH ones.

    Only little niggle is I have to remove the rear headrest of else the top of the seat doesn't sit flush -- this is simple, just tilt the seat forward, pull the headrest up while pressing the little button in and it comes right out. I leave the headrestraint in the trunk while my son's seat is in place.

    Getting my son inside is not a problem either. The doors are large and there is so much headroom that I can stand in the back while buckling my son in. He loves watching the speedometer in that car!
  • I test drove the car with a booster seat and didn't know about the headrest. The booster seat didn't seen to fit right. now i know why. thanks.
  • eman5eman5 Posts: 110
    Any news about getting a dealership in TX?
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 11,265
    Is anybody on the board leasing their Mini Cooper? With its high residual & free maintenance, this looks like a car that would be very attractive to lease.

    2001 Prelude Type SH, 2011 Pilot EX-L 4WD, 2015 Infiniti G37x Q40 AWD

  • I'm leasing. The payments are good compared to cars with crummy residuals. That said, I'm leasing more because I wasn't sure about the long-term reliability of a 1st-year car. If it is not great after the term is up, I'll return it -- if it is still a great car then I'll likely keep it unless the depreciation changes (which might occur if they are poor in the long run) and the buyout is much more than I would spend on a similar used one. That's my current thinking, anyways.
  • I was at the BMW dealer today for service on my car. I had fun walking through the MINI dealer (just opened in the past month). They had an S in the showroom that appeared to be loaded (leather, double sunroof, no nav). The asking price was $25,000. Is this in the ballpark?? Please advise what you are seeing for S prices (w/ leather, etc but no NAV). I am debating trading in my 540i for a MINI - my wife thinks I'm nuts, but what else is new!!

    BTW - great input on child seats - that is ONE of my wife's hangups with the MINI. She is also a BMW car snob (which she readily admits)!
  • Perhaps your username is the answer to my obvious question -- why trade a 540i for a MINI?? Granted, I love my MINI and all, but these two cars couldn't possibly be any different. If you don't mind the massive downsizing into the MINI, I highly recommed the move. That is, of course, as long as you can convince the wife to go along with it. When we got ours, the only convincing I needed was to let her test drive it. Now we fight over who gets to drive.

    Oh, and $25K for a loaded S sounds about right. They start around $19K or so. Add leather ($1250), premium pkg w/sunroof ($1250), sport pkg ($1250) and a few other goodies and you are right up there at $25K. We found it all to easy to also load up the car with extras like bonnet stripes and lo-jack, but I wouldn't have it any other way. Just don't let the dealer require add-ons that you don't want.
This discussion has been closed.