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MINI Cooper



  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    To stryder - Good idea. I know management is working on something like that. So we don't take this discussion off topic any further, please email me if you have any more questions/thoughts about this. People can also submit their ideas on this feedback form. Thanks for your patience.
    To ontheroadagain - Congratulations on your Indie Blue Mini! We look forward to hearing more details.... ;-)

    Happy motoring!

    Host of Hatchbacks & Wagons
  • ozone1ozone1 Posts: 87
    Aside from the color what options did you choose? Did you get the CVT?
  • Slowly I'm getting better at keeping track of this kind of info:

    CVT, yesiree!
    DSC, dual sun roof, leather lumbar standard seats for my sacroiliac, 16" runflats with 5 star standard wheels, aux. output in glovebox for the iPod I don't own yet, rubber mats ;-), and, umm, I think that's it. Figured I spent the most on the seats and CVT but I "needed" those leather seats! Oh yes, fog lights and chrome bumper inserts, too.

    It's a very tempting car to keep running up the options on, but I controlled myself fairly well.
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 18,586
    Does it do the job of keeping that motor on the boil?

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • ozone1ozone1 Posts: 87
    No complaints with the does the job.
  • stryderstryder Posts: 140
    Did you get the cold weather pack? If your back hurts, heated seats are a very nice deal, regardless of where you live. (And cheap at only $300)

    Also as another extra option, the rubber mats are great in winter, but you probably want a pair of carpet ones for summer, they just feel better on your feet. You can always pick those up though.
  • Yes, stryder I did get the "cold package". My back doesn't really hurt, I'm happy to say...that was just my small attempt at humor. :-)

    I'm sure you're right about carpet feeling better in summer.

    You know, the base price of this car is so relatively low that all those options are awfully seductive. Since I didn't know much about Xenon lights, except that I'm guessing they might be what blinds me when an SUV is barreling down upon me or heading towards me in the opposite direction, I skipped them.

    I also let the MFSW go too as I figured I really didn't need it... I'm much more of an NPR listener than anything else..though I do switch back and forth between two commercial stations for traffic news while commuting into Manhattan.

    It's amazing all the things that one can get for their MINI if they so desire!

    In re their roof rack - is it removable? I've heard it can create some unseemly noise if it's not "in use" while you're driving.
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    Unless they've changed it, the roof rack itself is of course removable but 4 ugly mounting points are permanently attached to your roof. There are better aftermarket ones, try Thule and Yakima.
  • stryderstryder Posts: 140
    You want MFSW, its so cheap its worth it. Even if you only rarely adjust volume or stations, its just so much easier. Some people (like Hpulley) get along without it, but its really addicting once you have it, and the buttons on the radio are so small anyway, its just simplier to be able to use your fingertips, and you can pre-set your NPR + commerical stations, so its just a tap of your left fingers to switch.

    And don't forget you don't get cruise control if you don't get MFSW.

    Xenons are the bright blue lights that blind you. More commonly you'll notice them on BMWs and some GMC Suv's. The blue is the thing, not the blinding actually. I usually get blinded by the sheer stupidity of the designers who put the headlights 4 feet off the ground on an SUV. Headlights are only blinding when they're in your face. They should light the road, not cars, and as Xenon's and all MINI lights are self levelling, so you shouldn't be blinding anyone.

    I know the options are really appealing if you have the money... I keep thinking of getting all of them except Parking and Nav (parking because it screws up the look of the bumper, and Nav is ugly) on my next MINI
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    Music in my car is almost always from my MP3 player using a line-in jack so aside from volume (which I find speed sensitive to be enough most of the time) I wouldn't use the steering wheel controls. When not using the MP3 player, it is a bit annoying to switch stations or skip tracks and the MFSW would be nice for that. I don't have much use for cruise control (have it in our family wagon and even in that car it doesn't get used much, just not a lot of cruising on Ontario, Canada highways).

    All that said, if I'd had a choice I likely would have got the MFSW (it was on the car I test drove and I thought it was a cool idea) but I got mine off the lot (impatient) and the only one available didn't have a MFSW.

    Next one I get I'll probably get the MFSW and the computer, even though I'm not sure they'll see much use. Both could be retrofitted to my current car but the price to add it now is so much more than the original option price that I can't bring myself to pay the difference.

    I hear the 2005 MCS will have an optional limited slip differential. Sounds like that might be a good reason to upgrade from the reports of people who've put Quaife LSDs in their current cars... though I still might wait for the Peugeot engine specs to at least be announced before I decide.
  • crcoxecrcoxe Posts: 72
    ... if you have ever had one. After 1 1/2 years with the MFSW and the computer, I had the first chance to drive a MINI without them and I felt lost. It was a loaner from the dealer (airbag light was on and they had to replace a harness under the passenger seat), and fortunately I only had it for one day. If for no other reason, the MFSW is so great in this car because the radio controls are so small and are way below eye level. I was so used to keeping my eyes on the road while changing channels, changing between radio and CD, or adjusting volume, that once I couldn't do it anymore, it just didn't feel right. Yep, this car has spoiled me. Almost to the point at which I will have to have a MFSW on any new car I buy. At purchase, I also did not think I would get much use of the MFSW or the computer. In fact, I only got them because they were included in the premium pkg. I am now VERY glad I have both. Wouldn't have it any other way.

    Oh and by the way, the repair was under warranty. They said I got a loaner only because I purchased the car there (MINI of Towson, MD).
  • Well, I really appreciate everyone's detailed replies - the only downside is that now I really think I'll try to add on the MFSW, if it's not too late. Everything you're saying makes sense and, stryder, I do go between NPR and the various traffic report stations that never seem to be talking about the highway I'm on! ;-)

    Just sent an email to my "MA" today toa dd on the Xenons after reading both these posts and some on MINI2. I keep rationalizing that 1. I'm saving so much money by not buying a more expensive car (base price wise) and 2. when I trade it in or sell it down the'll be worth more.

    hpulley4, thanks for that info re the roof rack - I'll look into Thule.

    OK, one more question: I can't remember if there's a retractable cover for the boot/luggage compartment? You'd think there would be but I have a nervous feeling there is not. I did see one advertised through a British company...but it just seems insane that MINI wouldn't have this as a standard part.
  • Yes indeed! The MINI comes stock with a solid panel boot cover (not a soft retractable one) that has two ropes connecting it to the rear lift hatch for "automatic" lifting action. The boot cover can be cleverly stowed behind the front seats when the rear seats are reclined. Very cool design!

    Also, good call on the MFSW. It is a huge value.

    Personally, I find the stock halogen lights to be very bright. The $500 price of the Xenon's just wasn't worth it to me. I guess it depends on when and where you drive.

    Congratulations on your new MINI.

  • Thanks for that - I think I can finally stop worrying!

    You're all very responsive and I'll have to think about the snow tires and rims... next. :-)
  • eman5eman5 Posts: 110
    Any audiophiles out there care to comment on this? Specifically, can you notice a difference between the base stereo and the HK while driving around town? Mostly I'm listening to NPR; every now and then my teenagers like to crank their stuff up, too. I'd appreciate the advice.
  • ozone1ozone1 Posts: 87
    I haven't heard too many complaints. I don't have it, personally. I mean, there are some better 3rd party systems you can buy for sure. The only complaint that I've read about is that some people have experienced door rattles because of the deeper bass.
  • rsunicorsunico Posts: 82
    Has anyone had the rear fog light retrofit switch installed? If so how much were you charged? My dealer wants $90 bucks or so for the install and $75 for the part/
  • kat101kat101 Posts: 14
    Ok - I've decided to get a MCS, but I'm still not so sure on some of the options.

    DSC - I figure I'll push my Mini from time to time and this seems like a nice feature to save me if I ever push a little too hard. Just curious as to other's thoughts around this. Instead of being a 'fun killer' figure it will actually increase the amount of fun I can have as I will be able to push a little harder without worries.

    Sunroof - The sunroof seems great, my only concern is the sunshade may not provide enough protection on really bright days. I sometimes will close the sunshade on my wifes car as I find the light to be too bright. Anyone with a sunroof have any thought on this?

    Automatic Air - never had this feature on car, but it seems nice. I notice that it only changes the temp by 2 degrees F, and I was a little concerned that this might not be enough control. Thoughts on this and autoair in general?

    I've already got some great info from others in this group. I look forward to people's thoughts.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    The cost/benefit tradeff is completely subjective, so don't let anyone tell you that anything is a "must have". Having said this, here's my $0.02.

    The Mini is a car focused on simplicity, light weight, and great handling, and as much as possible, it is best to stay true to the spirit of the car, and thus make the benefit bar from options relatively high. Loading it with luxury features seems a little like lipstick on a seven-year-old. And while a $20K MSC seems like a great buy with virtually no competition, a $28K loaded MSC with all three packages, nav, and a few other options seems like a very poor buy compared to something like an Acura TSX.

    Having said this, DSC, in my mind is above the bar because it is a valuable safety feature and with a very small car like the Mini cruising around in the land of SUVs, you want all the safety you can get, especially active safety that will prevent an accident to being with. The steering on the Mini is also very quick, so you could make the argument that steering errors that might be forgiven in another car would spin the Mini.

    On the sunroof, I doubt you'll have much issue with the shading - the shade blocks most of the light. But you do want to keep in mind that a sunroof is a source of squeaks/rattles, may leak, steals headroom, and reduces body rigidity. All these make it well below the bar for me. If you're tall, I'd definitely forget it.

    Good luck with your choices. I ended up with a sport pkg MCS with metallic paint and that's it. I'd would have forgone the sport pkg if I didn't want DSC and Xenons (safety thing again), and when you price them ala carte, the sport pkg wheels and fog lights are virtually free when you get the pkg.

    - Mark
  • I concur with Mark's opinion regarding DSC. Believe me, you can still have a blast with the handling of a DSC-equipped Mini. I've only had mine kick in once, and that was on an emergency avoidance maneuver in a rain slicked curving tunnel exit.

    Regarding the sunroof, the shade does it's job. As a matter of fact, I like the fact that the interior still receives daylight with the shade closed. Here, we don't get as many cloudless skies or the intense heat of places like Phoenix, so perhaps someone from the southwest could comment.

    I had a minor sunroof rattle (common, then) when the car was new, but it was the the folded wind deflector rattling against the closed sunroof panel, and I fixed it with a small circle of the soft half of an adhesive-backed velcro fastener. No other problems in the last year.

    Regarding the climate control, I just set it and forget it for the most part. But then, I did that with my old car's basic air-conditioning system as well. Truth be told, my car had the Premium package as I wanted the sunroof and the Multi-function steering wheel and hadn't really felt that strongly about the Auto A/C (but it and computer were in the package for almost the same cost). My feeling is that I have enough control with the Auto A/C, but standard A/C would have been fine.

    Good luck!

  • My buyer's opinion, based on test drives only, is that the sunroof is great!! There is a ton of headroom in this car and I can't see how, unless you're 6' 8", you'd be bothered by the roof being slightly lower... However,markjenn obviously feels differently. For me, I really like the feeling of openess it gave to the back seat as well - those rear windows don't open so this helps counter that closed in feeling. The sun shade seemed fine to me on a sunny, fall day in Connecticut.

    It's funny but my view of options is very different, too. I say if you can afford it and think it's something you want, do it. For me it was the sunroof, DSC for safety!, and leather seats with the lumbar, the cold weather package because quite frankly I'm used to it on my current Subaru and it's wonderful on those cold, icey, winter mornings! At the last minute I've tried to include the Xenons and MFSW but don't know if they'll make the cut or not as the order was already placed.

    I chose Xenons because I read about their amazing light and I drive twisty highways at night without street lights...and I'm not as great at night driving as I used to be.

    I chose MFSW at the last minute because of what I've read about upcoming improvements and the use of iPods and other things...and felt it might increase the resale value of the car as well.

    Also included fog lights and 16" runflats...again to put my anxious saftey concerned mind a bit more at ease.

    For me a fancier stereo didn't matter... And I fool around with the air conditioner temperature too much to want automatic AC...

    So, it is - as always - a matter of personal taste. To me, the MINI is an amazing car with tremendous built in safety features, great handling, wonderful looks, the perfect size for parking in Manhattan, fun to drive and the initial price tag is low enough that I could afford to add on these extras - whereas another car's base price would have been substantially higher and I could never have afforded these luxuries and extra saftey features.

    There's my $1.50's worth of advice! ;-)

    Good luck and keep us posted!
  • t33t33 Posts: 5
    After a few months of reading people's opinions and test driving, I finally ordered my MCS (Indi Blue, black roof) this weekend. Hurrah! I went for the custom car with the options I thought were essential (DSC, fog lights, rain sensing wipers and auto dim mirror) and fun (premium and cold weather packages, HK).

    In one MCS with HR that I test drove, the doors did shake, but then I was pushing the radio to see what it had. I've since test driven cars with HR and didn't notice any shaking.

    I agree with ontheroadagain that the sunroof adds an openness to the car that's appealing. I found that I still had enough head room (which isn't what I've found in other cars with sunroofs) and the screen offered enough shade while driving on a sunny day.

    Not much has been written about the rain sensing wipers lately. I discovered that MINI has intermittent wipers, however there is one setting that is dependent upon the speed you are traveling. In other words, the wipers go less often at slower speeds and more often at faster speeds; there is no other settings. The dealer I spoke with thought they were well worth the cost. So, for someone like me who this will be their first manual car, I thought the more help I can get the better!

    Thanks to everyone for their help and opinions.
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    All MINIs get speed sensitive wipers. You don't need rain sensors for that. Rain sensing ones you leave on intermittent all the time (except in car washes) and when it rains they come on by themselves dependent on amount of rain and car's speed.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    Of course, any option you want is a good one. But ...

    Rain-sensing wipers? Sorry, this is one I just don't get. You see the windshield getting wet and you flip on the wipers. Do we really need a $150 gizmo to do this for us? (In fairness, the $150 also gets you auto-dimming mirrors which seem a bit more useful to me.)

    I've also heard that it complicates windshield replacement and MC's tend to be stone chip/crack magnets due to their lack of windshield rake, the way the hood is shaped (it has more "draw" than any other hood produced) and proximity to the front of the vehicle.

    Finally, asking dealers whether an option is worth the money is like asking a stock broker if it is a good time to buy stock.

    - Mark
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    While we're debating options (some of us have nothing better to do while waiting for our cars than 2nd guess our choices and drive our dealers crazy), does anyone out there have any direct experience with the heated seats?

    I like heated seats, but have heard that the MC's don't work very well - they tend to get hot very quickly so you end up oscillating between hot/cold which makes them more annoying than useful. But I'd like to get other opinions.


    - Mark
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Posts: 591
    I think they're a worthwhile option but if you live in Florida you can probably skip them unless you have back pain.

    I have the seat heaters and I really like them. They have two settings. One push of the button puts them on setting two which is very warm, good for heating through layers of winter clothing. Pushing it a second time lowers it to setting one which is just nice. In addition to the two levels, the seats initially come up to a higher temperature to warm you up and then come down to a constant level where it just keeps you warm.

    If you turn them on and off you'll actually make them hotter as they'll never reach the constant level I mentioned. The low level's constant heat is not bad. Level 2's initial heat is high but when you are sitting there in the car shivering, it is nice -- if you turn it on at other times you'll find it is too hot.

    I sometimes put the low level heat on just when I have a bit of a sore back. My wife uses it all the time during summer on the high setting for her back (though I think that's a bit much). This far into fall I sometimes use the low setting in the mornings because of the cold, not due to my back.
  • t33t33 Posts: 5
    In fairness to the sales people I have delt with, not one has pushed an option. In truth, if I had followed their recommendations, I would have purchased a less loaded and consequently cheaper car. I have been very pleased with my experience with the MINI dealers and sales people I have dealt with.
  • markjennmarkjenn Posts: 1,142
    Well, any generalization will have exceptions, but my experience is that car sales people push optinons since they make more money that way. I understand this and discount their advice accordingly. I don't expect them to give good advice because they have a vested interest in the outcome.

    In fact, I discount all information they give, particularly about the local market conditions, what their competitors are selling for, strengths/weaknesses of other competing models, etc. Their focus is on selling cars, not giving good advice. Some of the things I've had car sales people say are so absurd, it takes tremendous control not to burst out laughing.

    Mini sales people may be a little more laid back than most - the have about the easiest sales job in the world, at least for the moment.

    - Mark
  • kcr2kcr2 Posts: 10
    I'd love to hear from anyone who uses an iPod in their Mini. Where do you put it? We normally put ours in one of the cup holders. The AUX jack is mounted behind the cup holders so it works pretty well. Has anyone found a good iPod mount/holder?
  • Looking ahead to snowy New England winters, today I inquired of my Connecticut dealer about run flat snow tires. The parts man said I require new rims, as they cannot guarantee the original (16" aluminum five-spoke) wheels will survive run flat tire changing. Also, they do not offer 16" snows. So what I am offered is 15" run flats on new aluminum wheels for $251 per corner or $1004 per Mini! That's about double what I planned to spend. Say out there - does this sound kosher? alanmini
This discussion has been closed.