Mini Hatch 2.0 Cooper S Exclusive II Automatic 3 door Hatchback (2019) available from Doves Vauxhall Southampton

This vehicle is currently in stock at County Motor Works Vauxhall and can be purchased from Doves Vauxhall Southampton.

02381 630 543

£17,000

WAS £19,000, SAVE £2,000

New Shape Union Jack Mini Cooper S - Finished in Melting Silver Metallic paint with MINI Driving Modes, includes Leather Heated Seats, Chrome Line exterior, Chrome Line interior, Comfort Plus Pack and Navigation Pack as optional extras. Standard features includes 6.5 inch multi-function display screen, Automatic smart card/key includes keyless start, Bluetooth includes phone connection and music streaming, Media control wheel, Steering wheel mounted remote audio controls and much more.

29/03/2019

13507

Automatic

Petrol

SILVER



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Emissions and Fuel

CO2:
128 g/km

MPG:
49.6

WLTP CO2:
141 g/km

WLTP MPG:
45.6

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* Price does not include road fund license

V5 Document

V5 Document

Manuals

Manuals

Body Glass

Electric front+rear windows, Heated rear window, Heated windscreen washer jets, Rain sensor window wipers, Rear window wiper, Sun/heat protection glass

Brakes

Anti-lock braking system (ABS), DSC - Dynamic Stability Control, Front and rear disc brakes, Hill start assist

Communication

Compatible mobile phone bluetooth with audio streaming, Mini E-call

Driver Aids

Electro-mechanical speed dependant steering assistance, MINI Driving Modes - centre toggle switch to control driving setting (sport, mid and green)

Driver Convenience

Automatic start/stop function with brake energy recuperation

Driver Information

Instrument cluster, MINI TeleServices, On board computer, Service interval indicator

Embellishment Trims

Chrome line interior

Engine

Double Vanos system, Fully variable valve control, High precision injection

Entertainment

6.5" touchscreen with LED ring, FM tuner and DAB digital radio

Exterior Body Features

Bonnet scoop, Chrome border honeycomb structure radiator grille with S badge, Chrome plated fuel cap, Metal door sill strips with Cooper S imprint, Model logo Cooper S on right of tailgate, Radiator grille bars, tailgate handle, lower front grille grating, rear central fog light in chrome, Side scuttle panel with integrated indicator, Two central exhaust tailpipes with chrome finisher

Exterior Lights

Automatic headlight activation switch, Dynamic brake lights, LED headlight with closed ring and daytime driving lights, Rear fog lights, Rear LED lights with union jack design, White indicator lenses

Heating/Cooling/Ventilation

Manual air conditioning

Interior Features

12V Accessory socket in centre console, 4 lashing eyes in luggage compartment, Air vents, gear lever base, speakers in doors, door handles in chrome, Carbon Black colour line, knee roll and door armrests, Chrome interior highlights, Cupholders, Glove compartment, Height and length steering column adjustment, Leather gearshift lever and handbrake gaiters, Mini logo projection on floor from drivers exterior mirror, MINI Yours leather steering wheel with silver contrasting stitching with MINI Yours badge, Multifunction steering wheel, Storage compartments in doors, Tool kit

Interior Lights

Interior lighting with 12 basic colours selectable via toggle switch in roof, LED reading lights, vanity mirror lights, front foot well light and spotlight on front seats

Safety

3 point seatbelts on all four seats, 6 Airbags - front, side, head and seat belt tensioners, Two tone horn, Tyre pressure monitoring system

Seats

60/40 split folding rear seat, Front and rear head restraints, Front and rear isofix with front passenger airbag deactivation, Mechanical seat adjustment, driver seat height adjust, forward/back and front seats backrest, Storage pocket on back of front seats

Security

Alarm system with tilt sensor, monitoring doors, bonnet interior and tailgate, Electronic vehicle immobiliser, Start/stop toggle with keyless go

Transmission

Gear change indicator display, Performance Control, Steptronic sport transmission with double clutch and steering wheel paddles

Vanity Mirrors

Sunvisors with vanity mirrors

General

Badge Engine CC: 2.0
Badge Power: 192
Based On ID: N
Coin Description: N
Coin Series: Cooper S Exclsv II
Generation Mark: 3
Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07: 29E
Man Corrosion Perforation Guarantee - Years: 12
Manufacturers Paintwork Guarantee - Years: 3
NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %: 79
NCAP Child Occupant Protection %: 73
NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09: 4
NCAP Pedestrian Protection %: 66
NCAP Safety Assist %: 56
Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage: 999999
Standard manufacturers warranty - Years: 3
Vehicle Homologation Class: M1

Emissions - ICE

CO: 0.228
CO2 (g/km): 128
HC: 0.051
HC+NOx: N
Noise Level dB(A): 69
NOx: 0.023
Particles: N
Standard Euro Emissions: EURO 6
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb: 141
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Max: 146
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Min: 140
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High: 136
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High - Max: 143
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High - Min: 135
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High: 118
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High - Max: 123
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High - Min: 117
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low: 206
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low - Max: 211
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low - Min: 206
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium: 141
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium - Max: 145
WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium - Min: 140

Engine and Drive Train

Camshaft: DOHC
Catalytic Convertor: True
CC: 1998
Compression Ratio: 11.0:1
Cylinder Layout: IN-LINE
Cylinders: 4
Cylinders - Bore (mm): 82
Cylinders - Stroke (mm): 94.6
Engine Code: B48A20M1
Engine Layout: FRONT TRANSVERSE
Fuel Delivery: TURBO INJECTION
Gears: 7 SPEED
Number of Valves: 16
Transmission: SEMI-AUTO

Fuel Consumption - ICE

EC Combined (mpg): 49.6
EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies: True
EC Extra Urban (mpg): 55.4
EC Urban (mpg): 42.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb: 6.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Max: 6.4
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Min: 6.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High: 6
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Max: 6.3
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Min: 6
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High: 5.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Max: 5.4
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Min: 5.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low: 9.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Max: 9.3
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Min: 9.1
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium: 6.2
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Max: 6.4
WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Min: 6.2
WLTP - MPG - Comb: 45.6
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Max: 44.1
WLTP - MPG - Comb - Min: 45.6
WLTP - MPG - Extra High: 47.1
WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Max: 44.8
WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Min: 47.1
WLTP - MPG - High: 54.3
WLTP - MPG - High - Max: 52.3
WLTP - MPG - High - Min: 54.3
WLTP - MPG - Low: 31
WLTP - MPG - Low - Max: 30.4
WLTP - MPG - Low - Min: 31
WLTP - MPG - Medium: 45.6
WLTP - MPG - Medium - Max: 44.1
WLTP - MPG - Medium - Min: 45.6

Performance

0 to 62 mph (secs): 6.7
Engine Power - BHP: 192
Engine Power - KW: 141
Engine Power - PS: True
Engine Power - RPM: 5000
Engine Torque - LBS.FT: 207
Engine Torque - MKG: 28.6
Engine Torque - NM: 280
Engine Torque - RPM: 1350
Top Speed: 146

Test Cycles

Emissions Test Cycle: WLTP

Tyres

Alloys?: True
Tyre Size Front: 205/45 R17
Tyre Size Rear: 205/45 R17
Tyre Size Spare: TYRE REPAIR KIT
Wheel Style: ROULETTE SPOKE
Wheel Type: 17" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

Height: 1414
Height (including roof rails): N
Length: 3850
Wheelbase: 2495
Width: 1727
Width (including mirrors): 1932

Weight and Capacities

Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres): 44
Gross Vehicle Weight: 1635
Luggage Capacity (Seats Down): 731
Luggage Capacity (Seats Up): 211
Max. Loading Weight: 420
Max. Roof Load: 60
Max. Towing Weight - Braked: N
Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked: N
Minimum Kerbweight: 1215
No. of Seats: 4
Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb: 10.8

SUPERSIZE ME (new2) 20/12/2013

This third generation MINI 3-Door Hatch has been usefully improved - though not beyond recognition. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.

Ten Second Review

Fresh technology, smarter connectivity and sharper looks are amongst the highlight changes made to this revised MINI 3-Door Hatch model. If you liked it before, you'll really like it now.

Background

For a car that's been so successful, the modernday MINI seems to have nevertheless disgruntled quite a few people. "Look at the size of it," snort its detractors. "That's no Mini. It's a front-wheel drive BMW in disguise," they scoff. They might well have a point and if you're to embrace and enjoy the current day 3-Door hatch version of this MINI, it's best you think of it as a car completely different to the original, merely cribbing some of its design cues. That's because the modern era MINI has grown, since it was re-launched at the turn of the century and even more since this MK3 model was first introduced in 2014. That it now measures 3821mm in length and it's 1727mm wide which will have some up in arms, but let's keep a sense of proportion. It's still shorter than a 1990s Ford Fiesta, a vehicle hardly recognised as a leviathan amongst cars. The key themes in developing this current car have been to retain the look while improving quality, refinement and efficiency. Some smart technology has crept in which is sure to be popular. Although it looks much the same, be under no illusions: this latest model is a massively improved vehicle.

Driving Experience

The key update with this most recently revised model is that it's now possible to order it with adaptive damping - an important option given this car's go-kart-like firm ride, especially with larger wheels. Otherwise, it's as you were, all based on a chassis that's BMW's clever UKL1 platform, which also underpins a number of front-wheel drive BMW models. There's a base 1.5-litre model, the One, with 102hp, but if you want your MINI to have a bit of zip, you'll need to start your search for one at Cooper level, where an uprated version of that 1.5-litre petrol unit offers an eager 136hp, gets you to 62mph in 7.9s and arguably represents the sweet spot in the range. Then there's the Cooper S, with a 2.0-litre petrol engine putting out a useful 192hp, a lot of poke for something so small, with 62mph just 6.8s away. The flagship option in the mainstream range is the 231hp John Cooper Works variant. MINI also offers the option of a 7-speed dual clutch auto gearbox. In recent times, the brand says that minor changes have been made to its TwinPower Turbo Technology across the board, improving engine electronics, oil supply, intake air ducting, the cooling set-up and the exhaust system.

Design and Build

The styling doesn't look all that different, but close inspection will reveal a range of subtle updates. The front-view is dominated by a larger radiator grille with a black, hexagonal surround, flanked by the hallmark round MINI headlights. The position lights have been replaced by vertical air inlets to optimise aerodynamics and the central bumper strip is now in body colour, rather than black. The wheel arch has new contours, the side indicators have been redesigned to feature LED technology and at the back of the car, the fog light is now integrated into the rear apron as a narrow LED unit. Otherwise, this third generation MINI 3-Door Hatch retains the basic overall body shape that we all know and love, with its squat, purposeful look, helped by the tapered glasshouse. It's a touch larger than you might expect inside too - or at last it is provided you haven't been consigned to a rather cramped seat in the back: if that's an issue, you ought to be considering the alternative five-door version of this model - or perhaps the MINI Countryman SUV. Still, access to the rear isn't too bad and the rear bench seat splits 60:40. Boot volume is a supermini-like 211-litres. There's also decent interior stowage space, with cupholders and storage cubbies. Interior updates include the standardisation of MINI's largest 8.8-inch centre touchscreen display and Piano Black high-gloss surfacing. Chrome elements have been significantly reduced throughout the interior with the two outer air outlets framed by black panels. The internal air vents have been completely redesigned and are now embedded to be flush with the interior surface. Plus the sports leather steering wheel has been redesigned and conventional analogue instrument dials have been replaced with a digital display.

Market and Model

MINI these days offers three distinct spec packages with its models - 'Classic', 'Sport' and 'Exclusive' - though you'll only get the first of those if you choose the entry-level MINI One. Prices have risen slightly, which means that the entry-level MINI One in three-door form will cost you from around £16,800; there's no longer a diesel version. For a Cooper Hatch 3-Door, you'll need closer to £20,000 as a minimum. Equipment levels across the range feature items such as ambient lighting, auto headlamps and wipers, ISOFIX child seat fixings front and rear and Bluetooth. The MINI hatch buying proposition has always been about tailoring the car to your personal tastes, so you might well indulge in extras like body stripes, a John Cooper Works spoiler and contrasting mirrors. You can also choose from technology such as a head-up display, a MINI Navigation System, MINI Connect telematics and traffic sign recognition. The MINI Touch Controller allows you to write individual letters that the system then recognises when you're trying to input a sat nav destination for instance. MINI has standardised its bigger 8.8-inch central colour infotainment touchscreen, plus auto headlamps and wipers and two-zone automatic air-conditioning. Options include a new multi-tone roof. And heated front seats, a panoramic glass roof, a visibility package including windscreen heating, rain sensors, automatic light control, a Harman Kardon hi-fi speaker system and a sports leather steering wheel. You can also spend your money on Park Distance Control, electrically heated and folding exterior mirrors, and an automatic anti-dazzle function for the interior and exterior mirrors. As you can see, the base retail price is just an opening gambit.

Cost of Ownership

Manufacturers can't launch a car these days without trumpeting on about lighter weight, lower emissions and better economy - and so it proves with the latest MINI. The MINI One and the MINI Cooper register up to 51.4mpg combined cycle economy and up to 126g/km of CO2. The punchy Cooper S is fitted with a bigger engine but even here, combined cycle economy is rated at up to 45.6mpg and up to 141g/km of CO2. It's also worth noting that the automatic gearboxes don't impose a huge penalty in efficiency. A further innovation lies with the MINI Driving Modes, another optional extra. Using a rotary switch at the base of the gearstick or selector lever, drivers can swap from the default MID mode to either SPORT or GREEN. The three choices offer a set-up which is either performance-oriented, comfort-biased or geared towards fuel efficiency. The latter includes a coasting mode when the driver removes their foot from the accelerator pedal. MINI Driving Modes also influence the ambient lighting, shift characteristics of the automatic transmission and the Variable Damper Control - if that extra cost option is selected.

Summary

So what's happened to this MINI hatch? It's become better finished, the adaptive damping option is welcome and there are a great many more high-tech options to select from. That said, despite changing so much under the skin, it feels very much a case of as you were, the brand perhaps a little cautious of alienating either existing owners or potential new customers with something radical. Don't let that make you think we're underwhelmed by this MINI. It's still a great hatch and the latest changes give it some legs to continue the success story. The prices look very reasonable at the moment, but to get the best from this car, you'll probably want to throw a few of those high-end options at it, so budget accordingly and take that into account when you're calculating your cost of ownership numbers. The MINI might have grown up but it doesn't look as if it's lost its sense of fun.

COOPERSONIC (new2) 28/03/2014

The latest MINI Cooper S serves as a timely reminder that a new car needn't have the fun engineered out of it. Jonathan Crouch reports.

Ten Second Review

The improved MINI Cooper S is still one of the market's most engaging small hot hatches thanks to its hard-hitting 2.0-litre engine, its talented chassis and the fact that a big helping of fun inbuilt from the ground up. It'll get to 62mph in 6.8 seconds, has an exhaust note that's pure naughtiness and is sure to continue to win plenty of fans. It's even reasonably priced, as long as you don't get too carried away with options.

Background

The MINI Cooper S has long been an exercise in artful compromise, looking to occupy that sweet spot between the warmish Cooper and the incandescent Cooper S JCW. As a result, it's often been the best pick for those who aren't likely to subject their car to a race circuit and instead just want a MINI that's entertainingly quick without incurring huge running costs in the process. The third generation MINI range launched in 2014 saw this Cooper S derivative gain an all-new 2.0-litre turbocharged engine and become a bigger, better finished car than before. That's helped this MINI to make a case for itself against talent like the Peugeot 208 GTI, the Renaultsport Clio 200 and the Ford Fiesta ST. Now, this variant's been subtly improved.

Driving Experience

Since this third generation Cooper S variant was launched in 2015, this hot hatch MINI derivaive has stepped up its game. Of course it needed to given that even a humble MINI Cooper these days has a perky 1.5-litre turbo engine that can spirit it from rest to 62mph in around 8 seconds. Hence the requirement for the 2.0-litre 192hp four cylinder turbo unit that was inserted into MK3 model versions of his variant and which can now drive through a more sophisticated 7-speed Steptronic auto gearbox with paddleshifters if you don't want to swap cogs yourself with the usual 6-speed manual stick shift. The manual features a rev-matching mode on downshifts so it'll sound like you have the most flawless heel and toe technique. As before, this powerplant certainly shifts a bit, thanks to the MINI's light weight and the fact that this unit develops 280Nm of torque from just 1,250rpm. This engine loves to be revved and, in its 'Sport' mode, it even puts a few crackles into the exhaust note on the over-run. This Cooper S dispatches the sprint to 62mph in 6.8 seconds and runs on to 146 mph. This 2.0-litre lump is much the same as that we've seen in the BMW 1, 3 and 5-series, although here it's mounted crossways in the car.

Design and Build

There have been one or two grouses about this MK3 MINI Hatch's styling, with some saying as it's got bigger, this generation MINI has become a bit ungainly, especially around the front end. The styling of this revised model doesn't look all that different - as before there's a choice of three and five-door body styles. Close inspection will reveal the addition of standard-fit LED front and rear lights, plus there's now extra scope for all-important personalisation. Get out the tape measure and you'll find that this MK3 design is actually larger than you might think, thanks to a wheelbase exension of 28mm over its post-2014-era predecessor. These proportions give it quite a squat, purposeful look, helped by the tapered glasshouse. The interior features sports seats and black chequered interior surfaces, with piano black and dark silver highlights. The plectrum-shaped starter is a very nice touch and while I love the fact that the speedometer is these days positioned properly in front of the driver, there are other ergonomic glitches such as the fact that you can hardly move the infotainment controller when you're parked with the handbrake on. It's a touch larger than you might expect inside too - or at last it is provided you haven't been consigned to a rather cramped seat in the back: if that's an issue, you ought to be considering the alternative five-door version of this model - or perhaps the MINI Countryman SUV. Still, access to the rear isn't too bad and the rear bench seat splits 60:40. Boot volume is a supermini-like 211-litres. There's also decent interior stowage space, with cupholders and storage cubbies. Various fresh trimming options are available and a 6.5-inch colour infotainment screen and a multi-function steering wheel are both fitted as standard.

Market and Model

Prices start at around £21,000 for the Cooper S three-door hatch with the five-door version bumping that up by £700. There's a £1,360 premium for the Steptronic auto gearbox. That's for base 'Classic' trim which hardly an Cooper S buyers will want. Most will find the extra for either 'Sport' or 'Exclusive'-spec. At first glance, all this seems like a touch more than you'd pay for rivals like the Ford Fiesta ST and Volkswagen Polo GTI but when these competitors are properly specced-up, there's not a lot in it. Equipment includes full-LED lighting, hip-hugging black cloth sports seats, a DAB stereo, a three-spoke sports steering wheel, air conditioning, Bluetooth and keyless start. This being MINI, there's a huge amount of personalisation options, so you might well indulge in body stripes, a John Cooper Works spoiler and contrasting mirrors. You can also choose from technology such as a head-up display, MINI Navigation System, MINI Connect and traffic sign recognition. Standard safety fittings include front and side airbags as well as curtain airbags for the front and rear seats, automatic passenger airbag deactivation and front and rear ISOFIX child seat mounts.

Cost of Ownership

As you might expect with BMW pulling the strings in the background, this MINI Cooper S features some faintly otherworldly efficiency measures. The quoted combined fuel economy figure is up to 41.5mpg and up to 145g/km of CO2 for the 3-door version. And 40.9mpg and 148g/km for the 5-Door variant. An innovation lies with the MINI Driving Modes set-up, an optional extra. Using a rotary switch at the base of the gearstick or selector lever, drivers can swap from the default MID mode to either SPORT or GREEN. The three choices offer a set-up which is either performance-oriented, comfort-biased or geared towards fuel efficiency. The latter includes a coasting mode when the driver removes their foot from the accelerator pedal.

Summary

While I'm yet to be convinced that today's MINI Cooper S is as pretty a car earlier generation versions, there can be no doubt that it's a better all-rounder. It's more spacious, better built, features some fascinating technical features and seems to have been engineered to offer more driving fun on one hand and lower bills on the other. Just make sure you don't fit huge alloy wheels to it as it rides firmly already. The key change with this revised version is that an automatic gearbox is now a credible option thanks to the additon of that more sophisticated Steptronic 7-speeder. You could pay a little less for a Fiesta ST and I think the Ford would be purer, more focused experience on a back lane. Alternatively, you could also pay similar money for a Volkswagen Polo GTI and get a car that's more comfortable and relaxing. Smack in the middle of those two is the Cooper S - and its appeal lies somewhere between them too. If you want a big serving of fun but like to see where your money has been spent, it's a decent choice.

FLYING THE COOP (new2) 28/02/2014

The latest MINI Cooper reprises an old theme but adds polish. Can it still play the entertainer? Jonathan Crouch reports.

Ten Second Review

For an object lesson in how to improve a model, look no further than this latest MINI Cooper. Fresh technology, smarter connectivity, the option of adaptive damping for the first time and some extra personalisation alternatives; what more could you ask for? Lower pricing? It's good to know that MINI isn't utterly infallible.

Background

Following a vehicle as successful and as adored as the original Mini Cooper was always going to be a tough task but judged in terms of sales, BMW's rebooted 21st century MINI Cooper has to be judged a success. We've rapidly evolved to this third generation design, originally introduced in 2014 and here usefully improved in facelifted guise. While it's gradually become smarter and slicker, the Cooper can't afford to lose any of its likeability. As a warmish sports hatch, this one ought to be able to shift stock purely on the way it drives, but let's get real. This car's as much about design as dynamics. The key themes in developing this current Cooper have been to retain the look while improving quality, refinement and efficiency. Some smart technology has crept in which is sure to be popular. Although it looks much the same, be under no illusions: this latest model is a massively improved vehicle.

Driving Experience

The key update with this most recently revised model is that it's now possible to order it with adaptive damping - an important option given this car's go-kart-like firm ride, especially with larger wheels. Otherwise, it's as you were, all based on a chassis that's BMW's clever UKL1 platform, which also underpins a number of front-wheel drive BMW models. The Cooper's 1.5-litre engine puts out 136hp and develops peak pulling power from just 1,250rpm, helped by a tiny turbocharger. It even sounds good and BMW's engineers have worked at giving this version the sort of mid-level throttle response that you'd expect of a normally-aspirated engine. The sprint from zero to 62mph takes 8.0 seconds in either manual or auto guises. The manual has a neat trick up its sleeve though, namely automatic rev matching for smoother downshifting. The multilink rear suspension achieves decent bump absorption and supple body control, thanks to a layout that helps ride compliance without sacrificing roll stiffness. That's a win-win for the keen driver. MINI says that minor changes have been made in recent times to this unit's TwinPower Turbo Technology, improving engine electronics, oil supply, intake air ducting, the cooling set-up and the exhaust system. Perhaps most significant though is the news that the brand offers a proper dual-clutch auto gearbox for those wanting a self-shifter, this now a 7-speed unit.

Design and Build

The MINI Cooper Hatch rides on some quite dinky little 15-inch forged alloy wheels, which have low weight and excellent aerodynamics. If you think that is entirely too much tyre sidewall to be going on with, you can specify rims of up to 18 inches in diameter as options, but do bear in mind that the car's ride will suffer as a result. The styling of this revised model doesn't look all that different, but close inspection will reveal a range of subtle updates. The front-view is dominated by a larger radiator grille with a black, hexagonal surround, flanked by the hallmark round MINI headlights. The position lights have been replaced by vertical air inlets to optimise aerodynamics and the central bumper strip is now in body colour, rather than black. The wheel arch has new contours, the side indicators have been redesigned to feature LED technology and at the back of the car, the fog light is now integrated into the rear apron as a narrow LED unit. Otherwise, this third generation MINI 3-Door Hatch retains the basic overall body shape that we all know and love, with its squat, purposeful look, helped by the tapered glasshouse. It's a touch larger than you might expect inside too - or at last it is provided you haven't been consigned to a rather cramped seat in the back: if that's an issue, you ought to be considering the alternative five-door version of this model - or perhaps the MINI Countryman SUV. Still, access to the rear isn't too bad and the rear bench seat splits 60:40. Boot volume is a supermini-like 211-litres. There's also decent interior stowage space, with cupholders and storage cubbies. Interior updates include the standardisation of MINI's largest 8.8-inch centre touchscreen display and Piano Black high-gloss surfacing. Chrome elements have been significantly reduced throughout the interior with the two outer air outlets framed by black panels. The internal air vents have been completely redesigned and are now embedded to be flush with the interior surface. Plus the sports leather steering wheel has been redesigned and conventional analogue instrument dials have been replaced with a digital display.

Market and Model

There are three trim levels on offer here - 'Classic', 'Sport' and 'Exclusive'. You'll pay from just under £20,000 for the MINI Cooper 3-door hatch in 'Classic' form, with about £1,500 more necessary if you want automatic transmission. That's a lot more than a Cooper used to cost with this body shape, but it isn't too much of an exorbitant sum for such a quick and capable car. Equipment levels feature items such as ambient lighting, auto headlamps and wipers, ISOFIX child seat fixings front and rear and Bluetooth. The MINI hatch buying proposition has always been about tailoring the car to your personal tastes, so you might well indulge in extras like body stripes, a John Cooper Works spoiler and contrasting mirrors. You can also choose from technology such as a head-up display, a MINI Navigation System, MINI Connect telematics and traffic sign recognition. The MINI Touch Controller allows you to write individual letters that the system then recognises when you're trying to input a sat nav destination for instance. MINI has standardised its bigger 8.8-inch central colour infotainment touchscreen, plus auto headlamps and wipers and two-zone automatic air-conditioning. Options include a new multi-tone roof. And heated front seats, a panoramic glass roof, a visibility package including windscreen heating, rain sensors, automatic light control, a Harman Kardon hi-fi speaker system and a sports leather steering wheel. You can also spend your money on Park Distance Control, electrically heated and folding exterior mirrors, and an automatic anti-dazzle function for the interior and exterior mirrors. As you can see, the base retail price is just an opening gambit.

Cost of Ownership

The latest MINI Cooper 3-Door Hatch registers a respectable fuel economy - expect between 51.4mpg and 55.4mpg, depending on wheel size and transmission choice. Emissions are rated at 126g/km for manual models - a decent showing for a car offering this kind of performance. An innovation lies with the MINI Driving Modes, another optional extra. Using a rotary switch at the base of the gearstick or selector lever, drivers can swap from the default MID mode to either SPORT or GREEN. The three choices offer a set-up which is either performance-oriented, comfort-biased or geared towards fuel efficiency. The latter includes a coasting mode when the driver removes their foot from the accelerator pedal. MINI Driving Modes also influence the ambient lighting, shift characteristics of the automatic transmission and the Variable Damper Control - if that extra cost option is selected.

Summary

So this improved Cooper 3-door hatch is smarter and slicker, with more of the juvenile design elements removed as the car matures. So has it lost some of its cheekiness and charisma? Maybe. The MINI is no longer a car that seems to occupy its own niche. It's been too profitable for that and many others have muscled in as a result. This Cooper model more than makes up the difference with an engine that's tuneful and revvy. Couple that with decent efficiency and a sharp chassis and it's hard to argue that this latest Cooper hasn't improved by a useful degree. Its rivals have played a high stakes game but MINI has just laid down some more aces.

MINI'S NO MOUSE (family) 12/02/2021

The improved third generation MINI 3-door Hatch purports to blend the retro chic of the original with cutting edge technology. June Neary reports

Will It Suit Me?

Let's face it, I don't have a large family to cart about daily. Only a partner who uses me as a taxi service. So something MINI-sized would suit me nicely. So when I heard all the hype about the improved third generation version, I determined to try one. When the car arrived at the office in 3-Door Hatch form, I at first thought they'd sent the old one: it really didn't look that much different. Still, the press pack assured me that it was and a seat inside revealed a quality cabin with technology promising much.

Practicalities

If you remember the original British Leyland Mini, it was an engineering breakthrough, a marvel if you will. In its own way, the first generation BMW-engineered MINI that launched here at the turn of the century also set new standards, becoming a small hatch that executives brought in their droves as a second car runabout. Here was something that really did have big car quality and small car cheek. The MK2 version that followed continued this trend. With this improved third generation version, the styling doesn't look all that different and you might feel a bit short-changed at this design's lack of head turning ability. It's only when you park it next to an older model that you can see how the styling direction has evolved. The longer, wider and only a little bit taller proportions give it a squatter, more purposeful look, helped by the tapered glasshouse. This facelifted model gets brighter LED headlights and trendy Union Jack-style LED tail lamps too. Stepping inside, I found I'd forgotten the way that the third generation version of this MINI hatch is so much more spacious inside than its predecessors. Despite the dinky size, there's actually very reasonable shoulder space across the back and bigger foot wells. The front seats have been given a wide adjustment range and a lengthy base for additional comfort and support. Access to the rear can be a bit awkward though, thanks to the low roof, but there's reasonable space for two on the back seat; leg room's a bit cramped, but if you need more, MINI will suggest you look at the five-door version of this design. I don't think I'd need to. The rear bench seat splits 60:40 and there's 211-litres of boot volume. Owners for the British original Mini would thank you very kindly for this amount of travelling space. The big centrally mounted circular speedometer of previous models was long ago ditched in favour of a more sophisticated multi function display, with a more conventional speedo flanked with a crescent-moon rev counter in the main instrument binnacle.

Behind the Wheel

The driving experience is a pleasant one, with the steering rack relatively direct, transmitting road feel to the driver. Visibility is good and all of the controls are logically placed and easy to get at - even in the pitch black (undeniably the worst time to take your first drive in an unfamiliar car). Comfortable seats will ensure that even longer journeys are a pleasure and plenty of height adjustment allows even lanky passengers to fold themselves in well enough. The engine range starts with the 102bhp 1.5-litre three cylinder petrol unit now fitted to the entry-level MINI One. If you really want your MINI to have a bit of zip though, you'll need to start your search for one at Cooper level, where an uprated version of that 1.5-litre petrol unit offers an eager 136hp, gets you to 62mph in 7.9s and arguably represents the sweet spot in the range. As before, there's also a Cooper D diesel option, using a 1.5-litre three cylinder diesel with 116hp, scuttling you to 62mph in just 9.2 seconds. Then there's the Cooper S, with an improved 2.0-litre four cylinder petrol engine putting out a useful 192hp, a lot of poke for something so small, with 62mph just 6.8s away. A John Cooper Works hot hatch variant tops off the range, using the same engine tuned out to 231hp. MINI customers also get to choose between three different transmissions. There's a manual 6-speed 'box and also two automatic transmission options on offer, a conventional 7-speed dual clutch auto and, on the top JCW version, an optional 8-speed sports auto which enables even shorter shift times, features rev matching on downward shifts and can be operated in manual mode using shift paddles behind the steering wheel. The suspension of this generation MINI has been extensively revised, both in design and in materials used, with much of it built from aluminium to save weight. There's also Variable Damper Control. Available as an option, it offers drivers a choice of two distinct set-ups, a more comfort-oriented response or a focused, sporty feel.

Value For Money

I thought this car would be more expensive than it is to be honest - though most owners apparently compensate for that by loading their cars up with pricey extras. For 3-Door Hatch models, you'll pay just under £16,000 for a MINI One. For a Cooper Hatch you'll pay just under £17,500, with another £1,000 getting you Cooper D diesel. At the top of the range, you'll need to allow a budget of nearly £21,000 for the Cooper S Hatch, once you've allowed for a few well chosen extras. Still, that doesn't seem too much of an exorbitant sum for such a quick and capable car. If you want the five-door body style, there's a premium of around £700. Equipment levels have risen sharply, with features such as keyless go, ISOFIX child seat fixings front and rear and Bluetooth.

Could I Live With One?

I think I could live with a MINI 3-door Hatch. This car still raises a smile. And that, on a dull Monday morning, is always a good thing.


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