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MINI Cooper



  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    The '05 had the CVT auto which was jerky, and sluggish off-the-line. Once it got going it was pretty smooth. The new 6-sp steptronic eliminated the jerkiness, and it is fairly peppy off-the-line. Overall it performs well, although at times when you're caught in too high a gear and need to kick it down, it can be a bit slow and harsh in doing so. One other thing is that I find first gear is quite short, so that it is good only to launch, and then you would have to quickly ease off to get it to shift into second gear. Otherwise you would be redlining it, with lots of noise but not much forward motion!

    We got the auto primarily because my wife does not know how to drive a manual. But now that my son will soon be getting his licence, I'm a bit tempted to get another one with a manual and teach him how to drive a stick, although 2 Mini's in the same family seems excessively impractical!
  • duke15duke15 Posts: 161
    Judging by the 163 number quoted in the original post, I am thinking the survey was the one posted on MSN today: QualityCars.aspx
  • duke15duke15 Posts: 161
    Thanks for the reply. The 2nd mini might be a bit impractical, but it would be less so if it were a third car... (tell your son to send me a check in the mail) :)
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    I'll let him know, but be forewarned that he writes rubber cheques! :blush:
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,564
    I research MINI reliability TO DEATH when I was thinking of buying one, and finally decided that if you avoided the very early ones, that these were pretty good cars overall. I also drove LOTS of them, in all configurations.

    I like the newer transmission 6 speed, and the newer BASE engine over the old trans and old base engine (rough), but I liked the older SC engine over the new one (more responsive).

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • coupahcoupah Posts: 18
    I agonized over ths for a month!
    I read every post at MINI2 and tirerack.
    Finally, decided to ditch the runflats and went with Goodyear Eagle F1 GS-D3 summer tire. Good year is a US company and the tires I bot were made in Germany. i lked that!
    I have dunlop snows (although i decided NOT to drive this Mini in snow) so I have one in my garage if I needi t. I also bought a can of flat-tire sealer.
    I think the quality of the F1 is such that i HPOE I won't get a flat!
    The performance is NIGHT and DAY!
    Even if you don't get summer-only tires, DITCH the RUNFLATS! Buy goodyears!
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    I can confirm all of that. I did much the same thing before I bought my 2004 MINI Cooper S new.

    The early cars could be troublesome but nothing was more troublesome then a base MINI with the CVT trans. The base 5 speed was better but not by much.

    Slightly off topic but still relevant is this... I sell what is supposed to be the lease reliable vehicle line in the US Land Rovers and I don't see nearly as many cars coming in broken as you would think. Sure the older ones come in but anything pre-2003 is a completely different vehicle to what is sold now. I have customers in Land Rovers that supposedly have three or four faults per vehicle on average that have never been in for warranty work in three or four years of ownership.

    Two people in particular that I sold Range Rover Sports to have over 75,000 miles on their vehicles and for the most part have only done routine maintenance on them. I think those two people both had one warranty repair each but they were both minor problems that didn't cause driving problems. We are talking about things like squeaky brakes and rear hatch supports that won't hold the lift gate up.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Just drive the car. I don't care if there's a spare.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    That survey's a little misleading as any problem you report gets listed. For instance, my Cooper arrived with a few problems and I filled out the JD Power.

    ABS/DSC lights flickered on at stop lights. CEL goes on every few weeks and then turns off for no reason. Brakes squeaked/grinded once in awhile. Rear hatch had cosmetic damage. Two of these things were fixed rather quickly. Another took a few months for me to bother asking Mini to fix it. Finally, CEL makes no difference so I don't bother reporting it. I also complained that the HVAC always blows hot air and that the runflats are steaming piles (repeated this constantly in the survey).

    Overall, 4 problems on delivery. HVAC was the same on my last BMW so it seems it's just a thing now for HVAC when off to seemingly always blow warm air unless one shuts it all down tight. The RFTs were my issues and I handled that. In reality, most of the problems were easily handled and only a single one really impacted my enjoyment of the car (RFTs).

    But on JD Power's listing, that means I had 6 problems within 3 months. I'm four times the average per buyer. And I'm picky!
  • ninawinnninawinn Posts: 2
    I'm thinking of buying the MINI COOPER -S after seeing one driven on street. Immediately I fall in love with the body shape & color of that cute car. It looked so classic and unique. But after reading quite a few messages in this forum, I feel a little bit of hesitation. Any advise?
    I did place an order last Sat. and dealer didn't require any deposit. It takes 6-8wks for delivery.
    Nina Winn
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257

    Follow your heart. If you like it, get it.
  • ninawinnninawinn Posts: 2
    I did ask the salesperson, he said MINI has designed the tires that allow driver to continue driving on flat tire up to 80miles to find a repair store @ max. 55mph. Therefore there is no spare tire for MINI.
  • eashleyeashley Posts: 8
    My 2003 has been a joy...go for it, and don't look back.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Minis use run-flat tires, just like BMW. Run flat tires (RFTs) a're rough riding, expensive to replace and prone to damage (thus requiring replacement). In a nutshell, they're horrible.

    Some of us remove them and go with normal tires - cheap to repair, last longer, less damage prone. The downside: if we get a flat we're stuck.
  • coupahcoupah Posts: 18
    Like the other poster said, ii YOU like it, get it. If you decide you don't like it you will have NO problem selling it as they are in VERY high demand. I TRADED my '05 for an '06 and I got ALMOST what I paid for it!
    You did right in getting the "S" model.
    Just remember, the MINI S is a real "Driver's Machine" and you can't EVER have enough fun driving it!
    take delivery and go motoring!
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    You did a trade-in and only lost a couple grand? Seriously?
  • coupahcoupah Posts: 18
    It was a base convertible, red and it was late spring. The dealer had literally 3 cars on his lot and was even buying cars on Ebay just to have something to sell.
    I got suckered into the S when i went for a demo ride. then I went for a ride in a friend's S and then I went online and had one built MY way!
    I paid $30K and right now I can sell it for 26! here is a pix of a similar unit but I'm sure it doesn't have the options mini does.
    If you want some help in re-specking yours, (it's not too late to ammend your order, I'm sure) I'll send an email address...
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Well, ok, you traded a convertible for a coupe. With the convertible, you benefitted from perfect timing in that it was just going into convertible season, and the dealer obviously wanted inventory. Otherwise, no matter how much the car is in demand, it would be hard to believe you would only lose a couple of grand after a year.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Sadly I learned tonight that I may have to sell my 07 Cooper S in December. I was just fascinated at the concept of losing only a few k. Right now my car seems to be down about 13% from my purchase price but it's only 15 months old.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Why do you suddenly have to sell? What happened?
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    simple as this:

    1. I have limited mobility
    2. Number 1 means that the options on baby seats is limited to 1 option and it's not the small, easy kind
    3. Cooper's got the ability to fit even the large seat but see 1
    4. Must drive the kid - to be born in late November - daily to grandmas starting in January.

    Loaded with about 15 lbs the car seat I can use (the buttons on most carseats were designed by odd folks - why would you push a button down into your child?), simply is too unwieldy to comfortably lock in and remove from the back of the Mini. Fitting in the back is not the problem. My physical ability to pull the carseat out and put it into the back of the Cooper without causing the kid major trauma..that's the problem. I don't want my poor kid to feel like every trip is a cause for much cursing and jostling.

    I knew going into the Mini I only had a two year window. The baby production was a bit easier than anticipated (we read most couples "try for 6-12 months" but we tried for one weekend!). So it seems the Cooper's realistic shelf-life for me will be about 20-21 months. Shrug. But that means 3-4 years later, I'm in a 1 series (unless something more entertaining arrives).

    :D Now do you see why I'm interested in real-world resale? The gas crunch is probably helping resale on Coopers.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    "we read most couples "try for 6-12 months" but we tried for one weekend!)"

    Hey, never underestimate the power of Viagra! ;) :P

    Congrats on the baby!
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Thanks. I guess I should be happy I don't have more kids running around; or that this is my wife's first kid. Regardless, I'm alternately excited and despondent. I really don't want to see the Cooper go but I also don't want to scramble my kid getting him in and out of the car. :)
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Would the Clubman be the answer to your dilemma?
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    I'm contemplating it, that's for sure. :)
  • tslbmwtslbmw Posts: 172
    FWIW, that is the reason I bought my Clubman in April. I have a 5 and 3 year old and the seats are easy to install with the "clubdoor" open, the LATCH hooks are very easy to access, and my boys have plenty of room back there.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    That's encouraging. My wife suggested checking out the clubman further too. This time I can get the features I want... comfort access again. Yahoo!
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    I noticed at the mini dealer that their lot was almost empty. A salesguy told me that they had sold 9 cars between Thursday night and Saturday afternoon at 1 pm. He said they can't currently keep the Cooper in stock.

    I know the dealership, as I bought from them and visited on many occasions over two years. I've never seen their lot so empty. It was almost creepy. They had a total of 2 convertibles, 2 demo clubmans (2 were sold and waiting to be picked up), a handful of Coopers and S models. Wow.
This discussion has been closed.