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MINI Cooper Lease Questions



  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Welcome Grant. You absolutely should be able to negotiate a lower selling price than MSRP on the Mini that you're interested in. The selling prices of leased vehicles are negotiable, just as if you were paying cash for or financing them. Negotiate as low a selling price as possible on the Mini that you're interested in and then have the dealer calculate your monthly payment using its buy rate lease money factor of .00230.

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  • pilotman5pilotman5 Posts: 20

    Can you please let me know what the current residual value and money factor are for a 2009 Clubman S? (Michigan, i.e. Midwest region).

  • I went to the Princeton, NJ Mini dealer yesterday and had a less than favorable experience. I inquired about the national lease deal and they confirmed my understanding (once on the phone, and then again in person when I went into the dealership). $999 up front (security, down payment and first month's payment) and $249 per month (plus taxes, tags, etc.) After the test drive, when it was time to talk numbers, I ended up at $340 / month and $200x up front. The $90 monthly was made up of taxes and fees. The extra $1000 in up front was primarily made up of $925 in 'bank fees'. Best I can tell, this is not included in any of the literature, and is not even included in the potential list of additional fees not included (taxes, registration, dealer fees are included as additional).

    Has anyone else had a similar experience? I guess, more specifically, has anyone walked away with $999 up front?

    Overall, a very unpleasant experience. I'm not sure how much of it is due to dealer shennanigans (at a minimum, they definitely handled poorly from a relationship perspective) a or legitamiately poor / unclear advertising by mini on the lease deal.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,724
    The advertised deal is for a MINI Cooper with an MSRP of $21,700.. 36 month term @ 12K miles/yr. The $999 doesn't include dealer fees, tax or registration (which is all in the disclaimer). However, it does include the acquisition fee...

    If the actual car you leased had an MSRP of $21,700, then the variables are taxes, fees and that acqusition fee...

    By charging you the acquisition fee upfront, when it was included in the advertised lease deal, they basically made an extra $925 on your deal. To add insult to injury, the base acq.fee is $725.. they even marked it up for an extra $200 (typical, actually).

    I think tax in NJ is 7% on the total payments, charged upfront... they most likely rolled this into the lease payments.... That probably represents around $23/mo.. 3 yrs registration, paid in advance (typical of NJ) probably adds another $400? So... maybe $40/mo tops for tax and registration..

    The other $50/mo.? Jacking up the money factor on the lease is also typical, and likely, since they did the same to the acq.fee.. That would add around $15/mo... The rest probably comes from bumping the selling price by $1000.

    So, unless you added a lot of aftermarket accessories that weren't included (Ipod connectors, floor mats, etc..), then they took you for around $2700 over the advertised deal..

    Other possibilities:

    1) MSRP.. Did the car they quoted have a higher MSRP than the ad car?

    2) Accessories.. Items not on the sticker are paid for 100% over the lease term.. $500 in accessories adds $15/mo. to your lease payment.

    3) Mileage allowance.. Did you ask for 15K miles/yr? That would add about $13/mo. to the lease payment.

    I'm assuming that you haven't taken delivery of the car... If you don't like the deal, then turn it down... It certainly seems as though they are going for the maximum mark-ups... Even taking into account taxes and registration, you should be able to get under $300/mo, with $1100 due at signing on a car that is identical to the ad car..

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  • Thanks for the reply. They were clear that the MSRP had to come in at $21.7. That's the price we based the numbers on.

    Sounds like they were just trying to make a buck.

    I'll resume my search at a different dealership. I had heard bad things about the BMW dealership that's in the same building...sounds like the Mini side needs some work, too.
  • jadynsdadjadynsdad Posts: 1
    I just got the June special on a Clubman S. I'm in So. Cal so keep that in mind.

    MSRP 29,450
    Price paid: 28,650
    Money Factor 0.0023 (same for everyone, approx 5.5% apr)
    Residual 66% (this is for Clubman S, residuals are even higher on the reg. hardtop in June)
    Bank Fees $925 (no way around this)
    Cap Reduction $1514 (this is whatever you want it to be)
    Total Drive Off $2500 (incl. cap reduction, first mos pmt, CA lisc, and related taxes)
    Pmt before sales tax $349
    Miles 12k/yr

    Hope this is helpful. Pretty good deal if you can keep the miles under 12k.

    All of the finance deals at Mini are good right now. Hard to go wrong - depends on your situation on lease vs. buy.
  • isaacyhoisaacyho Posts: 3
    Hi all--

    I'm very excited to be purchasing my first MINI, tomorrow at 5:30pm PST! I jumped on a silver hardtop, base, manual with a few nice options ( multi-function steering, ipod/bluetooth, spoiler ). But before I sign, I wanted to run it by you wise folks ( I've read this thread and you guys obviously know your stuff ) to see if they were trying to sneak any charges in last-minute. For my feature set, Edmunds lists the MSRP as $20,700 + $650 destination charge = $21,350 I talked the dealer down ( in writing ) to $20,300 *including* destination charge. I decided to lease based on the terms of the June lease special.

    Here are the terms the dealer sent me:
    Msrp $20,700 ( correct, destination charge doesn't count as part of the residual calculation )
    Total mileage :36,000
    Residual % 70.00%
    Residual value $14,490.00
    Initial cap cost $20,300 ( car price + destination )
    Bank fee $925 ( same as jadynsdad )
    Lmf: 0.00230 ( same as jadynsdad )
    Total tax $900.55 ( I live in CA )

    Base monthly payment $268.41 (??? - this is higher than $249/mo advertised, even with same money down and lower MSRP )
    Monthly tax $24.83 base on 9.25%
    Total monthly $293.24

    Doc fee $52.00
    Security deposit $300
    License $320

    Drive off:
    First payment $293.24
    Security 300.00
    License 320.00


    So, $913.24 drive off, $293.24/month all-inclusive for 3 yr/12K per. My 3
    a) how can my base monthly payment, before taxes, be higher than the special of $249/mo? My car is worth less than the $21.7K car listed in the special. Is it because they rolled the bank fee into the monthly payment?
    b) The destination charge isn't listed---I assume they are doing what I asked, and rolling into the "Intial Cap cost" of $20,300?
    c) is this a good deal?

    Thanks so much for any insight you can offer!

  • isaacyhoisaacyho Posts: 3
    After calculating the numbers on the above deal, I realized:

    1) The lease special calculates its residual as 70% of the MSRP of the ( car + destination charge + acquistion fees ). However, if you look up the edmunds MSRP valuation, $21.7K for the stated model of an automatic, premium package base hardtop is enough dough for only the car itself + destination charge---there's no room for the acq fee. The residual in the ad is indeed 70% of $21.7K

    This leads to the question of, what is the "bank fee" of $925---does any one know if this is supposed to include the acq fee or not? I'm waiting a response from the dealer on this. If it's the same as the acq fee, then it should be rolled into the calculation of the residual ( which is good for us consumers )---this would lower my monthly payment by almost $20. I bet that they are going to argue that the bank fee is a separate fee from the acq fee, and therefore has nothing to do with the residual, and that the acq fee was someone infused into the vehicle's initial cost. But as seen from paragraph #1, the #'s don't add up--no room for any additional acq fee there.

    2) my lease actually has me putting 0 money down, which is interesting.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,724
    The residual is based on the bottom line of the sticker... including destination..

    A couple of thing about the ad.. First, it doesn't give any information about the selling price... By doing some rough calculations, I'd say it assumes a $700-$900 discount from sticker.. Also, it assumes a downpayment (or CAP cost reduction) of $500 within the $999 due at signing. And... it does include the acquisition fee. (bank fee is acquisition fee)

    Now.. about your deal..

    1) You have a lower MSRP by $350.. You don't save this much, because you aren't buying the car, you are only using a portion of it... This would lower your payment by $4-$5/mo..

    2) The acquisition fee is a separate line item, and added to the CAP cost. It is the same way in the ad, only you don't see the calculations. However, the base fee is $725, and your dealer has marked it up by the maximum $200.

    3) In the ad, the $999 due at signing includes a $500 downpayment that you aren't making ($249 1st payment, $300 security deposit, $500 downpayment).

    So.. between the $200 markup on the fee, and the $500 less you are contributing, you have $700 more to pay on your car (vs. the ad car).. Thats about $21/mo. on the lease... subtract $4/mo. for the lower MSRP, and we are right in the ballpark of the ad numbers...

    Remember... the ad doesn't include any dealer fees, title, registration or taxes.. So, even the doc fee adds a little bit, if you didn't pay that upfront.

    I'd say you have a pretty decent deal... Within $5-$10 per month of the best you could do...



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  • isaacyhoisaacyho Posts: 3
    Ok, today I bought the car! And I did so after getting their finance guy to come clean about the lease special, item-by-item. Thanks to kyfdx for his insight, as it made me realize that I was paying more than I should for the bank fee as well for the car itself: as he figured out, there is a dealer incentive worked in to make the $249/mo work out.

    So, here are the #'s for the lease special:
    $21700 MSRP incl dest charge
    $750 dealer incentive (? partial dealer/factory, said the dealer, who knows )
    $725 acq fee
    .00230 money factor
    $15,100 residual
    $500 down ( against the cap cost ) + $250 sec. + first month

    This comes out to $249.89/mo + sales tax. + doc fee/title ( I verified this ).

    So in my case, I got them to give me the straight bank fee of $725, not $925. Then, instead of $20,300 for $20,700, they took off the full $750. I opted to put $0 down. This worked out to a lease payment of
    $252.69 + $23.37 in sales tax = $276.06. Again, $0 down! Not bad! I got the full benefit of the national special as advertised, but on a lower-priced car, and thus, a slightly lower overall cost.

    You can see that these clarifications knocked almost $20 off the initial price they quoted me in previous posts. They tried to play it off like they didn't know what was going on, and "had never done this deal before", but I'm not really that naive. They only changed their tune once I called them on it. I do give them props for even agreeing to do all the exchanging of #'s via email. It made my life much easier to be able to calculate stuff in my own sweet time on my own, and hear advice from you folks!

    Hope this info helps some of you all, this national deal baasically is good because it ineffect wipes out the bank fee, and you get a 70% resid and 5.5% interest rate on a 3-yr loan. I went to MINI of Concord in the Bay Area btw...
  • atrajanatrajan Posts: 27
    Dear car_man & kyfdx:

    Is this a good deal

    Copper HT :
    MSRP : $20,300
    Negotiated price : $19550
    Residual: 71%
    MF : .00230

    3 year/30,000 Miles

    $958 initial (Deposit + first month + DMV)
    and $261/Month
  • atrajanatrajan Posts: 27
    Dear car_man & kyfdx

    Do you know the MF and residuals for the july program?

  • minookaminooka Posts: 6
    I know the terms but not sure what everything means yet so bear with me.

    I can't find the car I want on one of the 2 lots here in Atlanta so am going to order my Mini. My wants are pretty basic (sunroof, cloth seats, hardtop s) and my one have to have is a 'fun' color (which I've decided is laser blue).

    My question this morning is really on negotiating the price. The car isn't going to be sitting on the dealer's lot and tying up any of their money for long (if at all?) and I had read that MSRP-$1000 is pretty standard. What about if I order a car? Is -$2K too cheeky?

    Is the Residual and Money Factor standard across dealerships and do they change periodically (monthly?). What numbers should I be looking for when I go out to talk to them?

    Sorry for what might be basic quesitons but I haven't dealt with this in 15 years and I deal with stress by researching.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,724
    You have a few things going for you...

    1) The MINI sales model involves most buyers ordering their car... so, you won't get that push-back from the sales staff to buy something on the lot, today..

    2) By ordering exactly what you want, you won't have to pay extra for anything you don't want... Those $100 and $250 options add up fast..

    But, you've kind of got the incentive thing backwards... Yes, if you order a car, they won't have any carrying costs, because it is an immediate sale upon arrival.. But, if you aren't buying a car on their lot, that unit keeps accruing carrying costs... they would much rather cut you a deal to get rid of something that continues to cost them money..

    In summary.. I don't think you'll get a better deal on an ordered car.. If you bargain hard, you may do just as well as a car currently on the lot..



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  • minookaminooka Posts: 6
    Thank you for the response.

    Yes, that does make sense. Albeit counter intuitive to my thought process so I'm glad I asked. I'll try for -$1500 and see if I can land at -$1000.

    Can anyone respond regarding the money factor question? Is that a set number or is there a number I should be aiming for?
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 64,724
    Car_man has the inside info on the leasing programs..

    I know that last month, the money factor was .0023, but I haven't seen or heard about July's numbers..

    BMWFS (or MINI FS.. same thing) has a pass/fail system for lease rates.. if you qualify, you qualify... However, dealers are allowed to mark up the base rate by .0004 for extra profit (and, most do). You want to shoot for the base rate, without markup..



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  • minookaminooka Posts: 6
    Again, thank you kyfdx! I found a site that walked me through a calculation so I have a bit better understanding of how it all works.

    I shouldn't have a problem getting a lease, but with the finance markets the way they are, who knows. I'd really rather buy but with the economic climate (job market) the way it is, I'd rather be safe with a lower monthly payment.

    Car_Man if you are out there, do you know the current residual value?

    I'm curious as to how/why it changes every month. Not necessary for actually getting a car, just curious in general.
  • hull22hull22 Posts: 31
    What are the July lease rates for the Mini Cooper Clubman? Also, do the current Mini lease special requiring taking delivery by a certain date, meaning you can't special order a car and get the lease special?

  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Hi pilotman5. According to the latest information that I have seen, Mini's current buy rate lease money factor and residual value for a 36 month lease of a 2009 Cooper Clubman S with 15,000 miles per year are .00230 and 62%, respectively.

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  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Hi atrajan. I have seen Mini's July lease program and I would be happy to fill you in on the details of it. However, its money factors and residual values vary by trim level, term, and mileage allowance. Let me know exactly what these variables are and I will let you know what the program is like.

    Prices Paid: Buying & Leasing Experiences Forum
  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Hi minooka. Mini's residual values vary by trim level, term (aka length of lease), and mileage allowance. Let me know what these numbers are and I'll gladly provide you with the number that you're looking for.

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  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Hello Jacob. Mini's current buy rate lease money factor and residual value for a 36 month lease of a 2009 Cooper Clubman (non-S) with 15,000 miles per year are .00230 and 63%, respectively. I believe that this lease program is scheduled to run through the end of the month. Having said this, many manufacturers' captive finance companies allow consumers who order vehicles to lock in the lease program that is available at the time that they place their order. If you're interested in doing so, make sure to ask the dealer if this is an option.

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  • smithsongasmithsonga Posts: 123
    what are the lease rates for a Cooper S Convertble? 10k and 12k miles, thx.
  • Hi there. I'm stuck and I need help. I was trying to get credit approval on the Mini website and it kept asking me for my birthday. But nowhere on the page do I see anything pertaining to birthdate. Please help! Has anybody had this problem?
  • gobsarvgobsarv Posts: 1
    Good morning car-man,

    just wondering if i got a good deal or an acceptable deal on the car i leased yesterday.

    MSRP on Cooper S + equipment = 27036
    other charges such as dealer fees/tax = 1381.72
    trade in of = 3000

    which equalled to unpaid balance of 25417
    cash due at signing is = 1510.26

    which all equalled to = 314.30/month

    would you consider this as a good deal or just acceptable???

  • owl79owl79 Posts: 1
    Hello all. Newbie to this board. I know I should have done all my research before leasing, but I had a busy July. Let's say I want to now learn for a potential 2nd lease opportunity in a few years.

    I just traded in my 2004 Mini Cooper for a 3yr(10K/year) lease on a 2009 Mini Cooper non-S hardtop. I would like some reassurance that I got an OK deal... I know I didn't get the best deal possible. If I got a bad deal, please let me know, too, so that I know to give my business to another dealership in the future :)

    Here are my details of the contract... NOTE it's I negotiated $600 off this worksheet price after I saw the first revision. So, these numbers are from the first revision.


    MSRP + Bank Fee = $23975 ($925 for bank fee)
    Cap Reduction = $6814.68
    Net Cap Cost = $17160.32

    Adj Residual = $15904.50 (69% of $23050)
    Tot Term Dep = $1255.82
    Monthly Dep = $34.88
    Mo Lease Chg = $81.01
    Base Payment $115.89
    CA tax = 9.5% = $11.01
    Tot Mo Payment = $126.90

    Est Fees/Term = $1067.75
    Tot Taxes = $1048.03

    1st Payment = $126.90
    CAP Red = $6814.68
    Sls Tax Upfrnt = $651.67
    1st Yr Fees = $361.75
    sec Dep = $0
    Other Upfnt = $45.00
    Tot Init Pmt = $8000


    My questions:
    1) what is the $651.67 sales tax upfront? I asked for a quote on a no-trade in scenario (in case I wanted to sell my car private party - would have got more, but I've got no time for it at this point in my life) and the upfront sales tax was $4.28) - did I get taken on this "tax"? I didn't think dealers can add extra state taxes at will, so I figured this was part of the trade-in fee?
    2) How is the $81.xx monthly lease charge calculated? It doesn't seem proportional to the monthly depreciation cost.
    3) what is my money factor ratio and how's it compare to what is current? (My Fico is around 800)
    4) For future reference, what other numbers could I have negotiated besides the $200 on the bank fee?
    5) What is "Est Fees/Term = $1067.75"? I'm guessing part of it is the "1st Yr Fees = $361.75" and I understand there's a $350 fee on return of the car. I'm guessing the rest is registration fees for the 2nd and 3rd years?

    Additional notes:
    - MSRP was $23,025
    - I negotiated for $600 off, bringing down the price to $22,425 (so my adjusted numbers different from above come out to be $106/month, after taxes)
    - Found out later (glove box) that car was sitting on lot/showroom since 6/9/2009

    Thanks in advance!
  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Hi smithsonga. Mini is not currently providing lease support on the Cooper Convertible. As a result, if you were to lease one through its captive finance company right now, you would have to use its standard lease money factor. Fortunately, its standard factor is not that bad. It probably varies slightly by region, but it should be around .00250 right now. The 36 month, 12,000 mile per year residual value for an '09 Mini Cooper Convertible S is 60%. The 10,000 mile per year residual would be 1% higher than that.

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  • CarMan@EdmundsCarMan@Edmunds Posts: 38,515
    Hi gobsarv. I personally would not have used the money from my trade as a down payment for the lease (I would have asked for a check instead), but that does not have any impact upon whether this is a good deal or not. The easiest way for me to evaluate this deal would be for me to compare this car's MSRP and its selling price. You already mentioned one of them. Which one is the $27,036 price that you mentioned. Let us know what the other one is and I'm sure that either myself or another knowledgeable community member will gladly let you know what they think.

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  • I'm looking to lease a 2009 mini cooper 2Dr hatchback (not s or clubman). I'm totally new to leasing a new car so please educate me in how I can come up with a competitive price. I'm from Atlanta, and taxes are 7%. Is there any other information that one would need to know before helping me determine a price. I think MSRP is 19200 with destination and handling. I plan on doing a 36 month lease and 10k/ year.

  • I think the MSRP is actually 20450 (with 650 destination charge) and invoice is 18470. I don't think any of the dealers have the car I want though so they would need to order it.
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