Anyone own a MINI (the car, not the iPod)?

Discussion in 'Community' started by Foxer, Jul 17, 2004.

  1. macrumors 65816

    Foxer

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #1
    Hey all. I'm seriously considering buying a MINI Cooper S (to replace my Expedition... quite a switch), and I was wondering if there were any MINI owners out there that might want to advise. I've test driven, and am generally very impressed. Plus, I get a real "Apple" kind of feeling from all the marketing material I've seen - which is nice.
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #2
  3. macrumors 68000

    Squire

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canada
    #3
    Do you like it?

    I have this warped idea that I'll buy some kind of convertible when I move back to Canada and drive from the west coast to the east coast with my wife and two kids. I'm always thinking about what car would be best for the trek. The new 6-series convertible would be nice but I'm not that wealthy. The new MINI convertible has crossed my mind. How much room do they have anyway?

    Squire
     
  4. Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #4
    I love it, but then I am single :D There are back seats, but there really isn't hardly any room at all back there, so if you're a short family and you will have your front seats right forward then you'll be ok, if not then...um...well...
     
  5. macrumors 68000

    Squire

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canada
    #5
    Well, my kids are one-and-a-half and three years old. Legroom wouldn't really be an issue for them now. Depending on when I move back (could be 2 years, could be 10), the MINI might be the animal.

    Squire
     
  6. Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #6
    You should be ok then. They are bucket seats as well, best bet is just go go and check one out :cool:
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2002
    #7
    I have one...love it. Plan on driving it for many years to come (Mini's have that classic styling that only gets better with age!).
     
  8. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2003
    Location:
    SF Bay Area / Miami FL
    #8
    Get the car. You won't regret it. I've loved my Mini ever since i got it, actually upgrading to an "S" about a year ago [ yeah it's my second one, like them that much ]

    FIN
    :D
     
  9. thread starter macrumors 65816

    Foxer

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #9
    We don't have kids yet, so the back seat isn't that big of a deal (and my wife has no intention of getting rid of her SUV). I tried sitting in the back of one at the dealership and it was something of a joke.

    How are they for reliability?
     
  10. Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #10
    Had mine over 2 years, never had a problem...oh, other than a *slight* accident :eek:
     
  11. macrumors 68040

    gwuMACaddict

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2003
    Location:
    washington dc
    #11
    i dont personally, but a friend in the city has a mini s and we use it all the time. i love it! very fun little car, nice and zippy... i sit in the backseat when we're taking girls places. i'm 6'1", 170lbs... its tight, but not uncomfortable, granted, we havent tried any long excusions in it
     
  12. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2000
    Location:
    54140
    #12
    My father owns a 2003 MINI Cooper. And I own a 1991 Toyota Corolla... ah well.
     
  13. macrumors 68030

    homerjward

    Joined:
    May 11, 2004
    Location:
    fig tree
    #13
    I WANT ONE!!

    im only 14 so i cant (legally :cool: ) buy/drive a mini but when i turn 16.5 (damn texas laws) im gonna work my ass off at a part time job (kinda oxymoronic(am i using enough parentheses(just curious))) to get one. regular cooper w/ cordoba beige leather sport seats and a usa (or uk, im not sure-the usa is my country *insert shame here* but uk has a better lookin flag) flag on the roof :cool: i say who cares about it's practicality or goodness, it has loads and loads of cool factor. kinda like the ipod mini...small, impractical, but oh so cool, except the MINI doesnt come in metallic pink. i say AFTERMARKET PAINT JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!
    :cool: :cool: :cool: :cool: :cool: :cool: :cool: :cool: pardon my rambling (color green for envy)
     
  14. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2004
    Location:
    Kent, UK
    #14
    I used to own a proper mini cooper, (one of the old style) which I loved to pieces, just can't efford a new one yet.

    edesignuk you going to Southern mini days? If you're not do a search for it. It's a good event
     
  15. macrumors 6502a

    geese

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2003
    Location:
    London, UK
    #15
    Solid cars. I love 'em.

    Remember, they are built by BMW, so reliability and build quality is supposed to be good. They are fun to drive and think how much petrol you'll save.

    I used to own a 1977 Mini 1275 GT 5 years ago, in lovely lime green back when Mini's were proper British cars. Well, when i say lovely, it was a bit of a wreck, but it drove like a go-kart and was twice as much fun.

    Alas, someone smashed into the back of it. And it died. :(
     
  16. macrumors regular

    jrober

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2003
    Location:
    Heathfield, UK
    #16
    I drive a Cooper, (Dearly wanted a Cooper S but company car tax, fuel economy and self preservation - Don't really want to leave behind wife and 2 sons. made me choose the std cooper). It is fabulous, fun and very cool and my family love it. The car of choice in my house. See pic below.
     

    Attached Files:

  17. macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Location Location
    #17
    I've read that many European brands aren't reliable at all, and America is improving to about the same level. Japanese cars rule the reliability ratings. However, this doesn't mean a MINI will break down every week or something. It just means that you may (or may not) have one or two more repairs to sort out for the first year or so of driving it. The MINI had a very poor reliability rating, but it may be better now after a few years of production, just like how the Ford Focus is now above average in reliability.

    Personally, I think a guy driving a MINI has the same social connotations as driving a little Mazda Miata, or VW Cabriolet/Beetle. They're nice, but you're paying so much for novelty and quirkiness-coolness that it doesn't make sense. Lots of better options are available at the price of a Cooper S. And no, I'm not a car guy who mods cars or something. I just like getting my money's worth.
     
  18. Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2002
    Location:
    London, England
    #18
    Yeah, BMW, Merc, Audi, VW, they all have awful reputations :rolleyes:
    Where is this information from?
    You're paying for what is essentially a "mini" BMW, you will always pay a premium for that.
     
  19. Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #19
    I recently drove a Cooper S -- could some of you who own one give me some feedback on one particular issue? I found that the shift linkage did not guide the shifter smoothly into the correct gear at all -- I was constantly hunting for gears during down *and* upshifts even at speed. In particular, almost every time I tried to go to 2nd for a turn, I ended up in 4th instead. I am used to 5 speeds more than 6, but I have not had this trouble on other 6-speeds I have driven, such as the Miata's, the Acura TL and RSX type S 6 speeds, the MB C230 6 speed, etc. It was really the most trouble I've ever had with this issue.

    Anyway, I haven't had a chance to drive a base Cooper yet. So first: have any of you noticed this issue on Cooper S models (I am wondering if this was build quality on the particular unit I drove, or typical), and how about the 5 speed on the base Cooper?

    Thanks!
     
  20. macrumors 6502

    belair

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2004
    Location:
    Luxland
    #20
    needs some adjustements

    I drove a Mini cooper and I thought the driving experience was a little poor. However it was an automatique transmission wich slows it down considerably. But thats not my point.

    If you get one check out if you can change the seats. I think they are really crap. They are too bulky and they are too much like a bench. I spent my time sliding from side to side.

    I think in a Mini Cooper S, the seats and the suspension, are better and you get the real "Mini feeling". I owned an old mini wich was really great.
     
  21. Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #21
    This is all US info, but....

    In the US, the dominant metric for this is the JD Power Initial Quality Survey. The survey measures problems users had in the first three months of use. The survey metric is essentially equivalent to 100x the number of problems the average user will have in the first three months, so if the metric comes out to 100 for a brand, the average user will have one problem.

    In 2004, MINI came out at 142 vs. an industry average of 119 and best-in-class of high 80s or 90s (87 for Lexus, 93 for Cadillac, IIRC the best-in-class number has typically been in the high 90s over the past five years or so). What this means is that a MINI is slightly more likely to have issues making a non-routine dealer service visit necessary than the average car. Compared to best in class, the average owner has another half a problem in this time frame (142 vs 87-93). Note that since the number for Lexus is still close to 100, even many Lexus owners are likely to have ~1 problem in the first 90 days.

    Anyway, this roughly corroborates what Abstract was saying. Out of interest, BMW (109) is much better than MINI (142), and BMW, Audi, MB and Volvo all edged out Acura. True to reputation, Volkswagen was 2nd to last -- losing only to Hummer. :)

    To put it in perspective also, MINI is closer on the list to Kia than to Lexus. But that's more of a testament to the strides Kia has made than an indictment of MINI. Also Hyundai was another brand that beat out Acura....

    Link: http://www.jdpa.com/presspass/pr/pressrelease.asp?ID=2004037
     
  22. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2002
    Location:
    Jersey
    #22
    i don't know
    i'm personally against the mini, as it has become a fad...i detest "trend" cars...(see: honda element, pontiac aztek(sp?), hummer H2, caddilac escalade, scions)...they just seem to go for shock appeal and lack any real substance....

    hopefully, HOPEFULLY, i will one day be able to get a mercedes benz e55 amg.....beautiful car....

    but i give dirty looks to mini's and their owners...sorry for the biased opinion...but just to give you an idea what you are in for, because i assure you i am not the only one...

    -adel
     
  23. macrumors 65816

    Timelessblur

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2004
    #23


    um you can get it before you 16.5. The law is you have to have you permit for 6 months. You can get you permit when you are 15. Oh and personly I think it is a good law. To many stupid 16 year old who think they know how to drive on the road so there is a need to have a permit for 6 month before hand
     
  24. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2003
    #24
    VW has a bad rap for being expensive after purchase
     
  25. macrumors 68000

    Squire

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    Location:
    Canada
    #25
    Actually, part of what Abstract wrote is true. Just because it's a Bimmer doesn't mean it's immune to reliability issues. In fact, the BMW X5 (I can't find the article) topped some list of recalled vehicles last year, I believe. And, again, as Abstract wrote, American manufacturers are finally getting their act together in reliability. (It only took what? Thirty years?)

    So here you have it- the JD Power and Associates Initial Quality Survey results:

    2004 IQS Results


    Lexus**************** 87
    Cadillac************* 93
    Jaguar*************** 98
    Honda*************** 99
    Buick**************** 100
    Mercury************ 100
    Hyundai************ 102
    Infiniti*************** 104
    Toyota************** 104
    Mercedes-Benz* 106
    Audi***************** 109
    BMW*************** 109
    Oldsmobile******** 110
    Volvo*************** 113
    Acura*************** 117
    Chevrolet*********** 119
    IND. AVERAGE******* 119
    Chrysler************* 120
    Dodge*************** 121
    Lincoln*************** 121
    Pontiac*************** 122
    Subaru**************** 123
    GMC***************** 127
    Ford****************** 130
    Mitsubishi*********** 130
    Saab****************** 133
    Jeep******************* 136
    MINI***************** 142
    Land Rover******** 148
    Saturn**************** 149
    Suzuki**************** 149
    Kia********************** 153
    Nissan***************** 154
    Mazda**************** 157
    Scion******************* 158
    Porsche*************** 159
    Volkswagen********* 164
    Hummer*********** 173

    Squire*************297
    http://www.thecarconnection.com/index.asp?article=7086
     

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