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Archive for the ‘Mini Cooper’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Mini Cooper Oxford Edition

Mini just introduced the Cooper Oxford Edition. It is a special edition Cooper intended for full- or part-time students, postgraduates or those who graduated in the past year. Albeit being the cheapest Cooper on offer right now, the car actually packs more gear than the entry-level Cooper Classic. Small fun hatch is available in three-door and in five-door form with the prices starting at $19,750 (destination charge excluded). The five-door is a $1,000 more expensive.

PostHeaderIcon 10 Most Affordable New Sports Cars for 2018

Although it’s easy to get lost in the deluge of noise surrounding fully self-driving, electron-powered commuter bubbles, there’s still a strong number of gas-powered sports machines out there to enjoy. And we aren’t talking about six-figure unobtanium supercars either – nope, we’re talking about loads of driving goodness to be had in the far more reasonable $20k to $30k price range. As such, we put together the following list of the 10 Most Affordable Sports Cars on the market today.

Looking over the list, some of you out there will undoubtedly point out how several entries aren’t your typical “sports car,” whether it’s the body style, drivetrain layout, or both. Regardless, every single one of these models comes packed with maximum smiles per miles, and for a lightweight price tag to boot. As such, we’ve included a few hot hatchbacks, a rally car, and a few others that fall outside the traditional sports car spectrum. Of course, there’s plenty of RWD coupes in there as well, so fear not and read on.

Continue reading for the full list.

PostHeaderIcon MINI Special Edition Gets a Not-So-Mini Name

Wish it was as simple as saying, “Bond, James Bond,” but MINI planned to give a long name to its car, and also price it exorbitantly high. The special edition car is based on the JCW Hardtop, and it comes with a bright orange shade, which is described as a “bold color historically used to make great feats of engineering and aerospace design stand out.” It is set to debut on July 14th at the MINI Takes The States rally.

PostHeaderIcon MINI Special Edition Gets a Not-So-Mini Name

Wish it was as simple as saying, “Bond, James Bond,” but MINI planned to give a long name to its car, and also price it exorbitantly high. The special edition car is based on the JCW Hardtop, and it comes with a bright orange shade, which is described as a “bold color historically used to make great feats of engineering and aerospace design stand out.” It is set to debut on July 14th at the MINI Takes The States rally.

PostHeaderIcon MINI Special Edition Gets a Not-So-Mini Name

Wish it was as simple as saying, “Bond, James Bond,” but MINI planned to give a long name to its car, and also price it exorbitantly high. The special edition car is based on the JCW Hardtop, and it comes with a bright orange shade, which is described as a “bold color historically used to make great feats of engineering and aerospace design stand out.” It is set to debut on July 14th at the MINI Takes The States rally.

PostHeaderIcon Mini Cooper 1499 GT

It’s a funny thing what a special edition car can do to polish an automaker’s shine. Nobody knows this better than Mini, which has created its fair share of special edition models, including one that it had just announced for the French market: the Mini Blackfriars Edition. Now, it’s doubling down on the SE goodness with yet another offering called the Mini 1499 GT.

In essence, the 1499 GT is not a special edition model that was concocted out of someone’s imagination, but rather, a tribute piece to one of the most iconic Minis to have hit the pavement: the 1971 1275 GT. Most of the functioning 1275 GTs have probably been lost in the sands of time and rust, but the 1499 GT is now here to breathe some life back to the legacy of the legendary hatchback. Between exterior features that pay homage to the classic Mini to suspension tweaks that ensure that it can perform as well as advertised, the new Mini 1499 GT is a stunning example of the best of what Mini can come up. The only downside is that only 1,499 units of the car will be made, and worse, all units will be sold exclusively in the UK market. It’s a bummer, sure, but don’t let dampen your spirits. It’s rare enough to see a special edition tribute car that properly pays homage to the car it’s supposed to be tipping its hats to. It’s even rarer to see one that takes the inspiration to a level that makes people actually reminisce about the classic. The 1499 GT does that, and then some.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Mini Cooper 1499 GT.

What makes the Mini Cooper 1499 GT special?


2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737857
“There’s a lot to like about the Mini Cooper 1499 GT, especially if you count yourselves as fans of the original 1275 GT”

There’s a lot to like about the Mini Cooper 1499 GT, especially if you count yourselves as fans of the original 1275 GT. I may not be old enough to remember the latter’s rise to fame, but I do remember riding in one when I was a little tot. It wasn’t the most luxurious car to begin with, and the interior space was literally unbearable even for a petulant child. But boy, oh boy, the old 1275 GT had character, something that a lot of today’s cars continue to lack. Not only that, but the 1275 GT also attracted plenty of attention, something I’m confident the 1499 GT will also have in droves.

The biggest and most important styling cues of the 1499 GT can be found in the exterior where customers are given a choice of getting the special edition hatchback with either a Pepper White finish or a Midnight Black paint. Here’s the catch though: depending on the color, the color of the distinctive graphics on the body will also change. Should customers opt for the Pepper White version of the 1499 GT, the graphics will be featured in pure black. On the other hand, a Midnight Black body will be treated to gold side stripes, the same exact stylistic feature that elevated the 1275 GT into one of the most famous cars Mini has ever produced. Don’t take my word for it; look at the photo. You’ll see what I’m talking about.


2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737862

Outside of the choice in body color, the 1499 GT also received a slew of aesthetic and aerodynamic upgrades, most notably the inclusion of John Cooper Works front and rear bumpers, spoiler, side skirts, and even bespoke door entry plates. The special edition Cooper also benefits from getting tinted windows, clear indicator lenses, and a set of 17-inch black allow wheels.

Step inside the car and the upgrades to the interior are just as dramatic, maybe even more so than the exterior. Greeting you once you open the door are sports seats dressed up in leather and Dynamic. Just in front of the driver’s sports seat is another JCW transplant: a sports steering wheel with its own Chili Red stitching. There are also scattered Piano Black trimmings throughout the cabin, to go with carbon black details, an Anthracite headlining, and enough JCW badges to emphasize the contributions made by the German automaker’s performance division.


2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737851

2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737853
“Step inside the car and the upgrades to the interior are just as dramatic, maybe even more so than the exterior”

Suffice to say, the Mini Cooper 1499 GT hit all the right spots as far as paying homage to the 1275 GT is concerned. It even has the whole “affordable” spiel down pat, thanks in large part to the car carrying nothing more than a small-capacity Twin Power turbo three cylinder engine that produces a total of 102 horsepower. Powerful it is not, and the 1499 GT shows as much with an acceleration time from 0 to 60 mph of 10.1 seconds and a top speed that’s likely locked in at around 120 mph.

Designed to pay homage to the classic 1275 GT, the car will be limited to just 1,499 units in the UK market. The automaker says just like the car that inspired it, the new 1499 GT is affordable, offers unique styling features and an “entertaining drive.”


2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737854

In other words, the Mini 1499 GT is an affordable Mini hatchback with a unique personality of its own. Don’t confuse it for a road-wrecker because it’s far from one. It does offer a good and hearty slice of Mini nostalgia, something that very few of its kind have been able to do. By that merit alone, the 1499 GT already stands out from other special edition Minis around, including the Blackfriars Edition.

What’s the deal with the Mini 1275 GT?


2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737864

The Mini 1275 GT’s history dates all the way back to 1970 when then Mini owner British Leyland decided to bring Ford designer Roy Haynes into the fold. Haynes, as some of you may know, is the designer of the Ford Cortina Mk II, and his initial responsibility was to revamp the Mini lineup. Tapping into his experience with Ford, Haynes went and restyled the Cooper, giving it larger headlights, a revised bumper, a boxy snout with a fender-to-fender grille section, and was fitted with a set of 10-inch Rostyle alloy wheels. That design eventually came to be the Mini 1275 GT as we know it today.

The 1275 GT ended up being a unique car of its own, owing to the fact that it was offered with a 1.275-liter four-cylinder engine that used a four-synchro close-ratio four-speed manual transmission. More to that, the 1275 GT was also the first Mini in history to receive a tachometer, a pretty useful trivia for the next time you find yourselves talking to someone who claims he knows more about the automaker than he actually does. Soon enough, the 1275 GT laid the foundation for what would come to be known as the “People’s Car” in Britain, a status that not a lot of other cars have been able to replicate in the years since. The 1275 GT even proved successful enough that its production ran for nine years before it was replaced by the Austin Metro in 1980. In that time, a total of 110,673 1275 GTs were made.


2017 Mini Cooper 1499 GT - image 737863

Incidentally, one of those 1275 GTs actually went up for sale earlier this year in Los Angeles, California. According to Petrolicious, the model in question came with a Bronze Yellow exterior and a Black Vinyl interior. It also underwent significant restoration, owing to the fact that its owner actually found it “unloved on his brother’s work premises at Somerford Mini” back in 2004. The unidentified owner eventually bought the car and spent good money restoring it, even going so far as to get specialists from Somerford Mini to carry out the car’s complete restoration.

In the end, the car itself sold for $25,000, as good of a deal as you can find for a restored 1971 Mini 1275 GT that, at that time, only had 10,000 miles in it since it was rebuilt.

References

Mini Cooper


2014 Mini Cooper - image 532525

Read our full review on the 2017 Mini Cooper.


2017 MINI Electric Concept - image 732151

Read more Mini news.

PostHeaderIcon Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition

Mini’s pantry of special edition models is stock full of unique creations, adding weight to the thought that the German automaker is no stranger to this fancy exclusives. Even with an inventory that’s bursting at the seams, special edition work soldiers on for Mini with the presentation of its latest creation, the Cooper Blackfriars Edition.

Taking inspiration from the Blackfriar’s section of London where the order of Dominican monks who carry the same name reside, this unique Cooper hatchback is defined by its subdued yet effective upgrades. There’s plenty of black to go around too, a nod to the traditional black robes worn by the Blackfriar’s monks. Inspired color motifs aside, the special edition Cooper also features plenty of unique details in its exterior and interior, not to mention the references to the Blackfriars from where it got its name. It’s not the flashiest special edition Mini Cooper we’ve seen, and it may not even be the most appealing one, but it does stick to the identity of the institution that it takes inspiration from. That’s more than what we can say for other special edition vehicles that lack the connection to what they’re supposed to be celebrating or at least shining a light on.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition

What makes the Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition special


2017 Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition - image 737840
“The focus was put squarely on Blackfriars, an area of central London where the famed Blackfriar monks reside”

Like with most special editions to come out of Mini in recent years, there’s as much importance put on the name it gets as there is on the actual features that make it unique in the first place. The streets of London themselves have turned into a rich pool of special edition versions from the German automaker with past works including the Baker Street Special Edition, Mayfair Special Edition, and Bayswater Special Edition. There’s even been a Green Park Edition, proving that there are no shortages of places in the bustling metropolis that Mini can’t draw inspiration from.

This time, the focus was put squarely on Blackfriars, an area of central London where the famed Blackfriar monks reside. These monks traditional wear black cloaks over their white habits as a way to identify their order. It’s no surprise then that the Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition gets a similar black-ish treatment, albeit without any hints of white in it. The all-black look is the visual highlight of the hatchback. It features a dominant black body color, matte black trim on the B- and C-pillars, and a set of 17-inch Cosmos Spoke wheels with its own dark accents. Typical of Mini’s special edition models, the Blackfriars Edition also comes with identifying badges throughout the body as a way to ensure that nobody confuses it for anything other than a special edition Cooper.


2017 Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition - image 737842
“On the interior the treatment is largely similar with the use of black leather and fabric upholstery”

Move inside, and the treatment is largely similar with the use of black leather and fabric upholstery to dominate the interior. Those who end up buying this special edition model will also be treated to a navigation system, a 6.5-inch touchscreen, and a panoramic sunroof.

Unfortunately, not all variants of the Cooper will be given the Blackfriar’s treatment as only the lower trims of the Mini Hardtop, including the Cooper, Cooper D, One, and One D, will be available with the Blackfriars special edition. Worse, and somewhat ironically, the special edition Cooper will actually be exclusive to the French market. That means that despite the car being inspired by an area in London, those who live in the UK aren’t unlikely to get the car for themselves.


2017 Mini Cooper Blackfriars Edition - image 737846
“The special edition Cooper will actually be exclusive to the French market”

It may seem strange to think of it in those terms, but Mini’s history of naming its special edition models after different streets and areas in London isn’t a prelude to these models being sold exclusively in that market.

What were the other special edition Minis that were named after places in London?


2012 MINI Cooper Baker Street Special Edition - image 434769

There’s been a lot of them over the years, but some of the most prominent ones were the Bayswater Edition, Mayfair Edition, Baker Street Special Edition, and Green Park Edition.

The Bayswater and Baker Street Special Editions were introduced back at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. Yep, that’s how long Mini has been hustling on this front. As expected, both SEs came with unique styling touches. The Bayswater Edition, for example, featured an exclusive Kite Blue metallic finish with optional Midnight Black and Eclipse Grey finishes available for the Cooper S and SD models. In also received special racing stripes on the hood and side mirrors, a black-finished roof, and a new set of 17-inch wheels.

Meanwhile, the Baker Street Special Edition was presented in Geneva with a Rooftop Grey metallic finish with special racing stripes on the hood, black mirror caps, and a new set of 16-inch alloy wheels. Optional paint finishes – Pepper White and Midnight Black – were also part of the offering.


2012 MINI Cooper Bayswater Special Edition - image 434754

Note: photos of the Mini Cooper Bayswater Special Edition.

If Mini isn’t naming its SEs after streets in London, it’s doing so with specific – and popular – areas in the metropolis. One such example was the Cooper Green Park Edition, which also arrived in 2012. This particular Cooper SE was defined by a
Pepper White paint finish complemented the company’s traditional British Racing Green finish on the roof. Aside from the fancy two-tone color, the Green Park Edition also had with an interior dressed in the same Pepper White color with seats that came in either black or Polar Beige.


2012 MINI Cooper Green Park Edition - image 450342

Note: photo of the Mini Cooper Green Park Edition.

References

Mini Cooper


2014 Mini Cooper - image 532525

Read our full review on the 2017 Mini Cooper.


2017 MINI Electric Concept - image 732151

Read more Mini news.

PostHeaderIcon Jennings Motor Group Renders 10 Everyday Family Cars As Supercars

From wide body kits to free flowing exhaust kits, carbon fiber interior vinyl wraps to oversized rear wings, there’s no shortage of aftermarket options when it comes to making the family errand-runner as close as possible to looking like a full-fledged supercar. But what if we could snap our fingers and turn that commonplace commuter into a seven-figure eater of worlds capable of hanging with the best from Ferrari, Porsche, and Koenigsegg? That’s exactly what Jennings Motor Group did with these 10 everyday family cars, now rendered to supercar stardom.

Included in the list are favorites from the likes of Mini, Renault, Fiat, Honda, Volkswagen, Toyota, Smart, Kia, Tesla, and Lada, each of which was blessed with the traditional supercar stance and more sharp ends than a needle factory. Some make a little more sense than the others, but regardless, we think the renderings look badass, and wouldn’t mind if the respective automakers took the hint that more supercars are indeed always welcome. Of course, we want to know – do these renderings for it for you as well? Which is your favorite? Let us know in the comments, but before you post, check out all 10 renderings after the jump.

Continue reading to learn more about 10 everyday family cars rendered as supercars.

PostHeaderIcon Mini John Cooper Works GP Concept

I suppose we should’ve expected something like this from Mini. Give the company an inch, and it’s more than happy to take a mile. Take the new John Cooper Works GP Concept for example. On the surface, the concept’s objective is pretty simple: pay tribute to its conquest in the Monte Carlo Rally back in 1967. But like everything that Mini does, it’s as interested in simply giving homage to a rally car as it is in making a statement and going above and beyond what’s needed. That attitude gave birth to the Mini Cooper S with John Cooper Works GP Kit and the Mini John Cooper Works GP from 2006 and 2012, respectively. Now, Mini’s back with a new randy concept called the John Cooper Works GP Concept, and wouldn’t you know it, it looks positively stunning.

Nobody’s going to ever accuse Mini at being bashful, but even the JCW GP Concept seems to have been done with a simple purpose in mind: get a Cooper JCW and drown it in aerodynamic bits. Even Mini boss Peter Schwarzenbauer describes the JCW GP Concept as “driving fun in its purest form,” and it’s hard to even come up with a reasonable argument otherwise. The end result is a car that can make even the most demented of tuning firms blush with pride, though I suppose getting that kind of reaction is already old hat for Mini. Good to know then that after all these years, the BMW-owned automaker still has what it takes to grab everyone’s attention the way very few of its peers in the business are able to.

Updated 09/18/2017: Mini John Cooper Works GP Concept looked even more aggressive on the Frankfurt floor. Check our gallery for more images from the show.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

PostHeaderIcon MINI Electric Concept

The modern Mini Cooper was launched in 2001, some 42 years after the British firm launched the original model. This time build under BMW Group ownership, the Mini became more of a fashion statement rather than an affordable, people’s car, but this is exactly what turned it into a big hit. Redesigned in 2006 and 2013, the Cooper grew larger and larger and gained more technology with each generation. In 2017, Mini introduced its first hybrid model, the S E Countryman All4, and it’s now looking to launch its first-ever electric car. And it just unveiled the Mini Electric Concept ahead of the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Designed as a preview for a production model that will be introduced in 2019, the Mini Electric Concept arrives almost ten year since Mini built its first EV, the Mini E. More of a demonstration vehicle rather than a production car, the Mini E was produced between 2009 and 2010 in the form of a three-door Cooper. More than 600 cars were deployed in several countries for on-road testing in a project that eventually led to a couple of BMW trial cars and finally the i3. A modern reinterpretation of the Mini E, the Electric Concept moves Mini one step closer to joining the EV market. It’s a bit late to the party, but as they say, better late than never.

Updated 09/19/2017: We added a series of new images taken during the concept’s debut at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini Electric Concept.

PostHeaderIcon TopSpeed’s Top 5 Convertibles That Won’t Break The Bank

Well, it’s officially summertime, and that means it’s the right season to get out and enjoy the warm weather. And, if you have the means, that should also include breaking free from the confines of a fixed hardtop roof and enjoying unlimited blue-sky headroom. Unfortunately, getting behind the wheel of a convertible isn’t always the cheapest proposition around, but fear not, because we’ve assembled five of our top picks for going topless without breaking the bank.

Of course, there are plenty of other options out there at this price range, but we decided to cut out the flab and only keep those droptops that you’ll actually want to drive. That means each offers something interesting under the hood, all while maintaining that fun in the sun factor. Of course, no roof means you’ll get a little extra slop in the corners, given the lack of chassis rigidity, but that’s okay – you’ll be enjoying your time in the elements all the same. Let us know which you’d have in the comments!

Continue reading to learn more about TopSpeed’s Top 5 Convertibles That Won’t Break The Bank.


PostHeaderIcon David Brown Revives the Classic Mini Cooper with Modern Tech

Introduced in 1959, the original Mini Cooper revolutionized the city car market and became so popular that it remained in production until 2000. The nameplate was purchased by BMW and relaunched in a more modern form in 2001, but most enthusiasts agree that things haven’t been the same. Nearly two decades have passed since the original Mini was discontinued and David Brown Automotive is bringing it back to life.

Called Mini Remastered, the new old Cooper is more than just a reproduction replica. While carefully crafted to resemble the original car from 1959, the small hatchback has been remastered to “meet the demands of modern day life.” The exterior may not give away the modern production process of the car (unless you look closely), but the interior has been redesigned to include all sorts of high-tech features, including a premium infotainment system.

The original engine has also undergone a complete transformation. Not only more powerful, it also runs smoother than Mini’s original unit, while returning improved performance and fuel economy. David Brown Automotive says that over 1,000 man hours go into creating each Mini Remastered. Let’s find out why.

Continue reading for the full story.


PostHeaderIcon Compact Hatchback Battle Royal – Finding The Best In A Six-Model Slugfest

Here’s the scenario – you want a car, but it has to be the right car. It’s gotta be practical and comfortable, but it can’t be a complete snooze-fest behind the wheel either. You don’t want a crossover, and a sedan isn’t gonna cut it. What you want is a hatchback, something with a little zest and personality, but something that won’t break the bank. Thankfully, there are plenty of options out there, but which to choose? To help you decide, we’ve gathered six of the top contenders and put them head-to-head in the following comparison article. Let’s get ready to rumble.

To keep it all apples-to-apples, each of the entries in our comparison comes packaged in a five-door body style, gets standard FWD, and is instilled with at least a hint of sportiness. Each is also tagged with an MSRP around the $20,000 mark. With criteria like that, we decided to include the Ford Focus ST, Honda Civic Hatchback, Hyundai Elantra GT, Mazda 3 Hatchback, Mini Cooper Hardtop Four-Door, and Volkswagen Golf GTI.

While all six of these hatchbacks are solid choices in their own right, the question remains – which is the best? Read on for our take.

Continue reading for the full comparison.


PostHeaderIcon Mini John Cooper Works Clubman

Mini showed off its new design language in the 2014 Mini Cooper, and since then, Mini brought us a four-door version of the hatch and revamped the Mini Countryman. Then in late 2015, Mini finally pulled out all of the stops and offered the next-gen Mini Clubman for the 2016 model year. The biggest change came in the size department as the Clubman is now 12.4-inches longer and 4.6-inches wider than before. Other styling changes include things like larger headlamps and fog lamps, new taillights, and exhaust pipes that are integrated into the rear bumper. At launch the Clubman was offered with a 1.5-liter three-cylinder or a 2.0-liter four-banger in the Clubman S. The latter offered 189 horsepower and a 6.9-second sprint to 60 mph. That’s great and all, but there was still room for something better, and Mini has finally made it happen with the new John Cooper Works Clubman.

Powered by a twin-turbo, 2.0-liter, the JCW Clubman delivers 228 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque which makes it the most powerful and torquiest production car that Mini has made to date. As is the usual case with JCW models, the new Clubman gets its own unique features like Black 18-inch wheels, performance seats, and tuned suspension. It also comes equipped with Mini’s latest iteration of the ALL4 all-wheel drive system to help keep things from getting squirrely during spirited driving or extreme maneuvers.

Thomas Felbermair, the VP or Mini of the Americas, said,” Performance and versatility are part of our DNA and our heritage so naturally there has always been a plan in place to bring the John Cooper Works variant to the Mini Clubman model. The addition of the John Cooper Works design and performance enhancements and the new ALL4 all-wheel drive system to the already versatile Mini Clubman model we have once again raised the bar in the premium compact segment.”

With that said, let’s dive on in a take a look at all the finer details of the Mini JCW Clubman.

Continue reading to learn more about the Mini John Cooper Works Clubman.


PostHeaderIcon MINI Cooper by AC Schnitzer

The Mini Cooper belongs in arguably one of the most competitive markets in the industry these days. When that is the case, auto tuners often find themselves in a similar position as they’re compelled to build programs that compete with their contemporaries. That’s the case with AC Schnitzer, the renowned tuner of all things Mini that just presented its new tuning program for the Mini Cooper in response to a number of other tuners building their own kits for the hatchback. In order to differentiate itself, AC Schnitzer is offering tuning kits for numerous variants of the Cooper, including power upgrades for the coupe, convertible, Cooper S, and Cooper John Cooper Works, the last of which now gets 265 horsepower.

In typical AC Schnitzer fashion, the German tuner is offering plenty of complementary pieces to this program. From the cosmetic side to the aerodynamic side, there are subtle modifications here and there that provide a unique tuning experience for the Cooper. New wheels are also being offered, as is a new suspension kit that improves the car’s handling in the wake of all the modifications on the car’s body and engine.

It’s a complete program in a lot of ways, and one that Mini Cooper owners will appreciate. It’s not going to turn the Cooper into a rocket on four wheels, but it should be able to push all the right buttons to improve the driving experience of the car.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.


PostHeaderIcon Mini Cooper John Cooper Works by B&B Automobiltechnik

The Mini Cooper John Cooper Works is the range-topping version of Mini’s iconic Cooper line. It boasts 228 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque, all coming out of its 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. For a hatchback, those numbers are impressive, but not so much when you’re talking to an aftermarket tuner. Manhart Racing thought so and it went about and gave the Cooper JCW a 300-horsepower upgrade. Now, it’s B&B Automobiltechnick’s turn, and just like Manhart, the German tuner has an upgrade that takes the Cooper JCW’s output in the neighborhood of 300 ponies.

Of course, B&B’s tuning program doesn’t stop there. The tuner is actually offering a three-stage engine kit that adds different amounts of ponies on the four-cylinder. It also a platter of chassis and suspension upgrades, all included to provide the Cooper JCW with improved grip and handling, not to mention the benefit of enhancing the performance hatchback’s sporty looks.

It may not have any exterior and interior modifications like what Manhart Racing is offering, but for what prospective buyers are getting, B&B’s program for the Cooper JCW is kind of kit that every type of owner of the hatchback can enjoy, all at affordable prices to boot.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.


PostHeaderIcon Mini Seven

Mini’s history runs all the way back to 1959 when British Motor Corporation released the Morris Mini-Minor and the Austin Seven – two nearly identical models that offered “an unusually generous amount of space for passengers and luggage within a minimum surface area.” The current generation of the Mini Cooper and Cooper S is said to embody the latest version of this principal, so Mini has decided to announce a new special edition model that it believes can pay homage back to the days when the Austin Seven came to be. The special edition is offered on two- and four-door variants of the Mini Cooper and Mini Cooper S, but don’t get too excited yet because there isn’t a whole lot to talk about.

In Short, the Mini Seven is nothing more than a Cooper or Cooper S with a small selection of unique exterior colors, some new trim, and of course the old “Seven” name. That’s it. Mini isn’t offering any extra power, technology, or any weight savings. Be that as it may, we’ve decided to take a closer look at the Mini Seven anyway. So, grab yourself a soda, and take a little journey down the page with us as we discuss the Mini Seven and the little things it brings to the table.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Mini Seven.


PostHeaderIcon Mini Cooper John Cooper Works F300 by Manhart Racing

Mini may forever be known as a company that’s predisposed to quirkiness, but it did itself a lot of good by introducing the John Cooper Works, considered as the most powerful Cooper that Mini has developed in its lifetime. The debut of the Cooper JCW not only showed Mini’s willingness to engage the hot hatch market, but more importantly it proved that it could actually do it. But as good as the Cooper JCW is on the road, there’s always the potential for the car to be better. That’s where Manhart Racing, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary, comes into the picture.

The German tuner saw fit to commemorate the occasion with the unveiling of the “F300” program for the Cooper JCW. In a lot of ways, the tuning kit’s main focus is to improve the hot hatch’s performance and handling credentials. In doing so, it developed a program that addressed both those things, while also giving the Cooper JCW refreshing upgrades on both the exterior and interior. The result is a fascinating take on the hot hatch that not only highlights Mini’s fascination for the off-beat but more importantly, the Cooper JCW’s understated performance capabilities that fit its status as Mini’s de facto flagship model.

The program also has a few surprises along the way, but why spoil them when you can read the whole thing for yourselves.

Continue after the jump to read the full review.


PostHeaderIcon Mini Launches Hipster Hatch With Instagram Filtered Windows

The original hipster subculture of the 1940s, which referred to aficionados of the jazz music genre, might not have been a big fan of automobiles given their self-imposed poverty, but things changed radically with the contemporary interpretation of the trend. Now composed mainly of affluent or middle class young, the hipster subculture sees the automobile as an important element of its affinity for everything vintage. Mini is now trying to capitalize on that with a special-edition Cooper designed specifically for fans of music bands you’ve probably never heard of.

Suggestively named the Mini Hipster Hatch, the special-edition Cooper is available in three colors named Brooklyn Blue, Organic Pumpkin, and Monochromatic Green, all complemented by red-and-black lumberjack patterns on the front fenders, side mirrors and roof. The three-door hatch also rides on a set of three-spoke alloy wheels that scream “the 1990s called and they want you back” at the top of their lug nuts.

Things become a lot more vintage inside the cabin, where the Cooper received a twin-deck cassette player, a big speaker instead of the infotainment screen, and stonewash denim upholstery on the seats. You know, to match those tight jeans that are so popular among hipsters nowadays. But wait, there’s more. The windows have been upgraded with Instagram filters so drivers can turn “any journey into a nostalgic memory at the touch of a button.” There are 12 pre-loaded filters, including the popular Lo-Fi, Clarendon, and Crema.

The powertrain is also new, with the Hipster Hatch being powered by a fixed-gear drivetrain. Essentially a five-speed transmission with four of the forward gears removed, the concept is inspired by the world of fixed-gear bicycles. Mini says it will “give the driver a greater feeling of control when popping out for a superfood smoothie.” Top speed is limited at only 25 mph to make sure no smoothie will ruin the stonewash denim on the seats.

Continue reading for the full story.


PostHeaderIcon Mini Gets Scissor Doors As Optional Equipment

There is nothing worse than finding the one parking spot available in a parking garage, just to find that once you squeeze into it, you can’t open the doors enough to get out. Mini has decided to combat that scenario straight on and offer scissor doors as an option on Mini models going forward.

According to the brand’s press release, scissor doors will initially be available as an option on the Mini 3 door, Mini Paceman, and Mini Convertible. Come the 2017 model year, the option will be extended to the Mini 5 door, six-door Clubman, and the Mini Countryman. The doors will be electrohydraulically controlled, and will reduce the space needed for parking and easy entry/exit by nearly 30 percent. The Mini 3 door, for instance, will now require a parking spot width of just 1,930 mm when equipped with scissor doors, as opposed to the 2,681 mm that is required with regular hinged doors.

The feature comes standard with the ability to open and close the doors with a remote control, but for an addition premium, the scissor doors can be equipped with “Comfort Access,” which will allow the door to be opened by a button on the door handle. According to Dalf Rietmann, the Head of Special Equipment Management with Mini, the plan is to eventually allow the opening and closing of the scissor doors via a smartphone app.

In the safety side of things, the doors are also equipped with something call Pyrotechnic Emergency Exit (PEE,) which uses powerful propellants to blast the doors off of the vehicle in the event of an emergency, allowing first responders to have easy and fast access to passengers. The new scissor doors will be available at a premium of €1,959, which is $2,230 at current exchange rates.

Continue reading for the full story.


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