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MINI Motoring

It's a MINI blog adventure.

Break in ... Almost over!

Thursday, July 28, 2005
5km to go! I plan to go for a little spin this evening to get it out of the way. :-)

I still have to be gentle, but not so damn anal that I have to pay more attention to engine revs than just doing what feels right. So much for my 6.7L/100km (35mpg) fuel economy. That's going to take an absolute shit now.

Here's to not having to watch the tach in 1st and 2nd gear!

2005 MINI Cooper S Cabriolet Road Test - Automobile.com Mini Car Review

2005 MINI Cooper S Cabriolet Road Test - Automobile.com Mini Car Review:
A Literal Breath of Fresh Air

Its coming up on a 12-hour work day. Im tired and I just want to go home. But home is another 45 minute drive away. Sigh. Yet, as I walk to the parking lot and spot my 2005 MINI Cooper S Cabriolet, the exhaustion and stress of my tedious job melt away (and Im not talking about my writing gig). In fact, I run up the parking lot stairs in excitement because, after a day of scattered showers and sunny patches, the sunny patches remain enabling me to drop the top of my test MINI for a breezy and speedy drive home.

If someone were to ask me if I could sum up the MINI Coopers personality in one word, a while ago I would have said fun. Now I would say rejuvenating. Rejuvenating? Yes, the MINIs personality taps into the tank of extra energy and excitement I thought I had exhausted throughout the day. It puts the smile back on my face and makes me look forward to driving no matter what the circumstances are, except maybe for rain, because then I cant go topless.


New into Old: BMW Reproduces the Cult Car of the 1970s

News & Press Releases - Overview - BMW North America:
New into Old: BMW Reproduces the Cult Car of the 1970s

BMW Museum at the Olympic Tower gains an attraction: BMW is building a replica of the 2002 tii from new parts+++Visitors to the museum can track its progress in the Glass Workshop

Munich. The “cult car” label is one that is popular and frequently bestowed. But there’s one car that really does merit this epithet: few models embody the spirit of the early 1970s like the BMW 2002. It is this zeitgeist phenomenon that BMW Mobile Tradition is now reproducing with the aid of new parts. And the best thing about it is that visitors to the BMW Museum at the Olympic Tower can follow its progress on a daily basis thanks to the museum’s Glass Workshop.

In the beginning was a number
The project was inspired by the fact that Mobile Tradition, the heritage division of the BMW Group, is now able to provide an estimated 90 percent of all spare parts for the BMW 2002. This is an outstanding parts supply for this classic, which can, incidentally, be viewed on the Internet at www.bmwmobiletradition.de. The idea of reconstructing a BMW 2002 tii developed rapidly. The core of the project is an original bodyshell from the ’70s. The small number of spare parts not available from the Mobile Tradition range are being provided by a donor car or remanufactured by hand. With the creation of the Glass Workshop at the BMW Museum Exhibition next to the Olympic Tower, the perfect venue for the task has been found. For the 250,000 or so visitors who come here annually, it offers a unique opportunity to follow the car’s progress live. Should the 2002 tii ever need to leave the Glass Workshop for specialized work, there will be an immediate, suitable replacement in the form of a BMW 3.0 CSL undergoing restoration. Scheduled to continue until the end of the year, the 2002 tii project is in the expert hands of master mechanic Arthur Heimann and the head of the BMW Group Mobile Tradition workshop, Klaus Kutscher. Mr. Heimann will be using several thousand Original BMW parts to build a new car more than 30 years old.

Cult car – cult color

This new four-wheeler, model year 1973, will be equipped with a strong heart: a 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine generating 130 hp will be installed in the BMW 2002 tii. In the era of the Beetle, a top speed of 190 km/h (118 mph) with moderate consumption of 9 litres/100 km (26.1 mpg) was a highly commendable figure. A zero to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) acceleration time of 9.4 seconds brought tears of delight to the eyes of family men and drove them straight to the sales office of their nearest BMW dealer. This dream car came with a price tag of DM 14,400. The “historical hue” of the day was reflected in the range of paintwork colors available: verona, golf and colorado were among the bright finishes on offer, but the hallmark shade of the day was inka – a strong orange. And it is this color that has been chosen for the 2002 tii currently under construction and destined to be a true shining jewel of the 1970s.


Oops ... I got my MINI!

Wednesday, July 27, 2005
I've been having far too much fun to post anything other than a news article. I got my MINI on July 12th, about a week and a half ahead of schedule. As you can see from today's date, I have had the extreme pleasure of driving it for the past two weeks.

I really don't know how to describe how this car just seems to know what you want and eagerly executes your commands. The only reason I even slow down to turn corners is so that I don't look like a complete jerk (or scare people who think any car going that fast will lose control). I really don't have to slow down, thanks to the absolute lack of body roll, stiff suspension and tight steering. But I do anyway. For the most part.

I'm still breaking the engine in within the first 2000km (1200mi), so I can't go over 4500RPM or 150km/h. The more I drive the car, the harder it is to do. Every one of the 6 forward moving gears has a good power band. And oh, what beautiful music the supercharger's whine makes.

Now that I'm no longer driving a SUV, I find that people aren't scared into respecting my space on the road. I think that the smashing appearance of the car does that instead. ;-) I have found that people are too busy picking their jaws up from the floor of their car to do things like cut me off or not let me merge when a lane is ending in heavy traffic.

Things are so different now. I do little things like refill my washer fluid or get some gas, and people start talking to me. At work, half of the people are on strike. It's pretty tense with security guards at the building 24x7, etc. Somehow though, the picketers come over to the car to tell me how much they love it. One of the security guards too. He tells me that he'll probably get fired for checking out the car every day, but he doesn't care. Little kids pull their parents over by the arm so that they can see the MINI. Other MINI drivers wave to each other on the road ... Man this is strange.

P.S. I just finished waxing the car about an hour ago. It looks as good as it did in the showroom, but my digital camera is terrible. I can't even show anyone the fruits of my labour! I'll see what I can do. If it gets dirty before I take a picture, I'll just have to wax it again. And again and again!

Atlantic British Ltd. Launches MiniCarParts.net – Offering a World of Parts and Accessories for the

Sunday, July 24, 2005
Atlantic British Ltd. Launches MiniCarParts.net – Offering a World of Parts and Accessories for the:
(Clifton Park, NY) - Atlantic British Ltd. launched a new product division today, focused exclusively on the new generation Mini Cooper (2002-on) retail and wholesale automotive market. The new division offers a wide range of parts and accessories for Mini Cooper, including numerous performance upgrades, customization accessories as well as range of genuine Mini Cooper parts. With the launch of this new division, the company has also launched a new commerce website, www.MiniCarParts.net, which offers the company’s complete product line for Mini Cooper. Atlantic British Ltd. has been a leading independent catalog supplier of parts accessories for British-made vehicles since 1970; offering a full line of parts and accessories for Land Rover, Jaguar and now Mini Cooper brand vehicles.


Three Oceano friends die in wreck

Thursday, July 21, 2005
San Luis Obispo Tribune | 07/21/2005 | Three Oceano friends die in wreck:
One was a 20-year-old aspiring rapper, another a 'natural caretaker' for her family; the driver and a fifth passenger are moderately hurt

By Sarah Linn and Mark Cornejo

The Tribune

Three childhood friends from Oceano died early Wednesday in Arroyo Grande when their car crashed into another vehicle.

The 1:47 a.m. crash killed Manuel Medina, 18, Gabriel Gonzalez, 20, and Jessica Jacome, 19, who had known each other since preschool. Two other friends, driver Andre M. Quintanar Sr., 19, and Lupe Castillo, whose age was not available, suffered moderate injuries.

All five grew up in the same Oceano neighborhood and attended Arroyo Grande High School together, friends and family said.

Quintanar told authorities he was driving south on Oak Park Boulevard south of Meadowlark Drive when a small animal ran in front of his Honda Accord, said Officer Scott Peterson of the CHP.

Quintanar swerved left across the northbound lane -- right into the path of an oncoming Mini Cooper.

The impact caved in the right side of the Honda, killing Gonzalez, who was seated in the right rear of the car, and Jacome, in the middle. They were not wearing seat belts, authorities said.

Medina, in the front passenger's seat, was wearing a seat belt and suffered major injuries. He was pronounced dead at Arroyo Grande Community Hospital.

'It was plainly a case of (driving) inexperience more than anything else,' Peterson said, adding that investigators don't believe drugs or alcohol were factors in the crash.

Quintanar may face misdemeanor manslaughter charges because investigators believe he caused the crash, Peterson said.

The driver of the Mini Cooper, 22-year-old Jasmine Axelsen of San Luis Obispo, walked away with minor cuts and bruises, Peterson said.

Quintanar and Castillo were released from Arroyo Grande Community Hospital on Wednesday after treatment.



Reported and Web Produced by: John Matarese
Updated: 07/12/05 16:54:20








MINI owners help Kennedy-Donovan Center

TownOnline.com - The Register - Arts & Lifestyle:
MINI owners help Kennedy-Donovan Center
Thursday, July 21, 2005

The Kennedy-Donovan Center of Dennis has received a donation of $5,420 from the sale of raffle tickets at the third annual MINIs on Top event.
The event, the largest gathering of MINI Cooper owners in the Northeast, included as a prize a two-year MINI lease donated by Herb Chambers MINI of Boston, a model MINI signed by MINI owner Trot Nixon of the Boston Red Sox, and two tickets to a New England Patriots home game. The raffles were held June 18 at the base of Mount Washington during the MINIs on Top car event.
MINIs on Top was started by a group of like-minded souls who enjoy each other's company and the cars in which they motor. The organizers met on an Internet forum dedicated to the MINI Cooper and the suggestion made there of a run up Mount Washington to view the sunset during the Summer Solstice has turned into the premiere MINI event in the Northeast.
Steve Barnatt, Dennis resident and MINIs on Top event coordinator, along with much of the volunteer staff, presented the check to Beth Von Staats, program director of the Kennedy-Donovan Center, which assists children, adults and families with developmental difficulties and unique challenges.


BMW Group Wins Award for Outstanding Design Quality

Wednesday, July 20, 2005
News & Press Releases - Overview - BMW North America:
BMW Group Wins Award for Outstanding Design Quality

First prizes in the 'Industrial Designer' and 'Manufacturer' categories of Ranking: Design.

Munich. Once again, the BMW Group placed at the top of this year’s “Ranking:Design”, an established best-of list in the design industry which selects the 100 most outstanding industrial designers and manufacturers each year. The company won awards for top design quality in both categories.

With two first places in the categories “Industrial Designer” and “Manufacturer”, the BMW Group took the lead for the fourth time in a row in the product group “Transport and Special Vehicles”.

DesignworksUSA, a subsidiary of the BMW Group with studios in Los Angeles and Munich, also achieved one of the sought-after places among the top industrial designers, ranking sixth.

Since the first “Ranking:Design” in 1996, the BMW Group has consistently ranked among the first three places in the product group “Transport and Special Vehicles”. Since 2001 it has even managed to continuously hold first place among the industrial designers and manufacturers in this group.

Moreover, the unbroken string of first place rankings catapulted the Munich automobile manufacturer into the first place of the so-called “Hall of Fame”, which sums up the Ranking:Design awards of the previous years – far ahead of other competitors in the branch.


Mini offers maximum cool factor

Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Mini offers maximum cool factor:
Import delivers great performance, comfortable ride.
Monday, July 18, 2005

Exiting a sandwich shop and returning to my car, I noticed a middle-aged woman and two children walking through the shopping center parking lot. The trio, about 100 feet ahead of me, walked directly to a dark silver metallic Mini Cooper S Convertible accented by a pair of white racing stripes on its hood.

It was my Mini -- or at least the one I was testing. As I approached the car, I saw them stop in front of it and begin talking and gesturing. Then they started circling the Mini, checking it out from different angles and peeking at its interior.


MINI Cooper Convertible Review | Part One

Sunday, July 17, 2005
MINI Cooper Convertible Review | Part One:
The MINI is ingrained in British culture and even though it is now owned by BMW its spirit remains British through and through. BMW have taken this motoring icon of the last four decades and transformed it into the most advanced and entertaining car of its size on the market.

Since its launch in 2001, the MINI adventure shows no sign of slowing down and with the introduction of the Convertible model in July 2004 you can now enjoy the MINI experience topless.

Statistically, only two in every 100,000 MINIs built could be exactly the same. This figure is reached based on the variety of interiors, exteriors and options that can be specified on a MINI. As MINI UK registered its 100,000th MINI in April 2004, it is quite possible that only two cars in the whole of the UK are exactly the same, such is the choice offered to MINI customers. We do wonder if some owners are worried about future re-sale values with over the top customisation.


Spy Shots: ’08 BMW X6

Sunday, July 10, 2005

The Car Connection - Spy Shots: ’08 BMW X6 - A crossover four-door coupe blurs the lines even further.:
Here are first photos confirming BMW's official statement made at the last Geneva Motor Show. The Bavarian carmaker is about to extend the X5 model range with an additional 4x4 'coupe,' based on the same platform.

In this case, the word 'coupe' does not mean a two-door, but, as in Mercedes CLS500 marketing jargon, refers to a sporting model with coupe-like roofline, even if it has four doors.

Definitely a new style for BMW! Okay, maybe not. Go read the article.


Oh behave!

Friday, July 08, 2005
I decided to sneak around at the dealership today. I saw a really hot looking MCS. The owner must have really good taste. Oh wait, it's MINE!


I absolutely love the anthracite headliner. This is the first one I've seen out of the 30 MINIs I have seen at dealerships all over the place, so I was a bit nervous about ordering it. The chrono pack isn't in yet, and I'd guess that the iPod isn't either. Now that it's here, the waiting gets REALLY hard.

Yeah I know. The pictures suck but I took them at dusk with my cell phone. The first picture isn't so bad because I converted it to B/W.

Vehicle to autonomous biped robot conversion for the Mini Cooper r50

Wednesday, July 06, 2005
Vehicle to autonomous biped robot conversion for the Mini Cooper r50.

I first had the vision to build a robot while working as an engineer on the old Mini Coopers in the late 1960s. There were no real robots at the time of course, so it was purely science-fiction. But I always believed a robot would be the most natural complement to the automobile - a full biped, intelligent version having great strength, dexterity and a library of mechanical knowledge. I imagined a robot with the ability to repair vehicles, direct traffic and watch over high-accident crossroads to preempt accidents.

This ambition started to look possible when work began on the new Mini. I've always believed BMW overbuilds many of their parts, so the over-building of certain Mini applications for my robotics use went unnoticed. In 1998, I began tests in a remote location outside Oxford.

In 2000 I thought my formal connection to Mini might be severed when Rover was sold by BMW. Luckily, BMW chose to retain the Mini brand. Subsequently, a few engineers would need to stay in England - Oxford to be exact. I was slated for retirement and was originally from the Oxford area so it raised little suspicion when I offered to stay. From then on, progress was swift.

I don't buy this, but check it out!


Mini Mania, Inc. Announces Best Warranty Program for Automotive Aftermarket for BMW MINI Cooper

Mini Mania, Inc. Announces Best Warranty Program for Automotive Aftermarket for BMW MINI Cooper:

Nevada City, CA – July 6th, 2005 Mini Mania, Inc.(tm), the market leader in distributing and manufacturing lifestyle products and high quality performance aftermarket parts for the “classic” Mini(tm) and BMW MINI Cooper(tm) automobiles is formally publicizing its comprehensive Mini Mania Warranty Program(tm). The Warranty Program was initiated in July 2004 as trial program and in the intervening time frame has met with tremendous overwhelming support from the company’s customers! As a result of this significant feedback from hundreds of customers, Mini Mania is now making the program an integral part of all of its business and communications processes.

“We wanted to send the right signal to our customers by offering a comprehensive “factory style” warranty to let them know we stand behind our products. The Mini Mania Product Warranty complements the original manufacturer’s warranty by providing customers with peace of mind even for cars modified beyond what the manufacturer is willing to support,” said Don Racine, President of Mini Mania, Inc. “The Mini Mania Warranty Program is the absolute best program of its kind in the MINI aftermarket industry – we want our performance customers to know that their upgrades and performance aftermarket additions receive product protection that matches and/or exceeds the warranty that is offered by the car’s original manufacturer!”


More mini than a Mini

More mini than a Mini:
More mini than a Mini
Royal Ford, Boston Globe
July 7, 2005 MICRO0707

They will swarm and flit into Boston like gnats, snarling and buzzing, blown here by a wind from the past out of Germany, Italy, England and countries that don't exist anymore.

These cars were smart before there was a brand called Smart.

They are microcars and minicars, and a microcar is to the modern Mini Cooper as a Mini Cooper is to a BMW X5. They are coming this weekend for the 10th annual Micro and Minicar Club gathering of New England aficionados, and as part of the 14th annual meeting of the national organization.

These are vehicles typically less than 13 feet long, with micros having engines of 500 cubic centimeters and smaller, and minis dropping from 1,000 cc.


MINI brand records 3rd consecutive all-time best sales month

MINI brand records 3rd consecutive all-time best sales month:
Press Release Source: BMW Canada Inc.; MINI Canada; Auto Sales

MINI brand records 3rd consecutive all-time best sales month
Monday July 4, 4:52 pm ET

BMW Group Canada reports best half-year sales in history
WHITBY, ON, July 4 /CNW/ - BMW Group Canada (BMW and MINI brands combined) retailed 2,302 vehicles during the month of June, a decrease of 5.8% when compared with May 2004 sales. Year-to-date, BMW Group Canada's automobile sales are up 8.5% over last year with 10,728 BMW and MINI models sold.

BMW brand: BMW 5 Series leading strength in sales. BMW Motorrad sales up.

In the month of June, the BMW brand reported a 10.6% decrease in sales with 1,891 vehicles retailed to Canadian consumers. Year-to-date, sales of BMW vehicles are up 6.5% with 9,007 units sold in the first half of 2005.

June sales were led by the 5 Series, including the all new xDrive All Wheel Drive equipped sedans and touring models, with 246 units retailed, representing an increase of 95.2% when compared with June 2004 sales. Year-to-date, BMW X3 Sports Activity Vehicle and 3 Series sales continue to be strong with 1,776 units (+99.3%) and 4,532 units (+3.7%) sold respectively. BMW Certified Pre-Owned sales were up 39.4% in June to 322, and up 70.4% (2125 units) for the first six months of 2005.

BMW Motorrad Canada had a very strong month powered by the R1200GS, totalling 155 BMW Motorcycles, an increase of 19.2% when compared with June 2004 sales. Year-to-date, BMW Motorrad sales are up 22.5% with 680 motorcycles sold.

MINI brand: Another all-time best sales month.

MINI Canada reported a third consecutive all-time record sales month with 411 new MINI Cooper, Cooper S and Convertible models retailed. This represents an increase of 24.5% when compared with June 2004 sales. Year-to-date, 1,721 new MINI models have been delivered to Canadian customers, up 20.3% over 2004.

'We had our best first half sales results in BMW Group Canada history," noted Lindsay Duffield, President & CEO. "June was the best month ever for the MINI, with particularly strong MINI convertible sales, On the BMW side, we've just launched new 2006 - 3, 5 and 7 Series' models. These new launches have gone extremely well, with strong customer demand and numerous accolades from the automotive press. We see the momentum continuing through the rest of the year as we introduce more new 3 Series, 5 Series and M5 models."

BMW Group Canada, based in Whitby, Ontario, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BMW AG and is responsible for the distribution of BMW luxury performance automobiles, Sports Activity Vehicles, Motorcycles, and MINI. BMW Group Financial Services Canada is a division of BMW Group Canada and offers retail financing and leasing programs on new and pre-owned BMW and MINI automobiles, as well as retail financing for new and pre-owned BMW Motorcycles. A total network of 36 BMW automobile retail centres, 18 BMW motorcycle retailers, and 20 MINI retailers represents the BMW Group across the country.

For further information

Kevin Marcotte, Corporate Communications Manager, BMW Group Canada, (905) 428-5005, kevin.marcotte@bmwgroup.ca


A Three Year Affair - er - Report

Monday, July 04, 2005
A Three Year Affair - er - Report:
Here's another three year report from a frequent MotoringFile contributor. As you'll seen find out, Rob has a specific style of writing that truly transports the reader:

Marlowe had a name for the place back in the day Bay City”; not the real name of a hard little place, hard by the City of Angels, but one of the nicer ones. I had been there a few times before, looking for the elusive “New MINI”, but by then I’'d been down a lot of other dead ends, running down rumors of sweet deals that turned to into bad dreams. That was why I was walking into Big Tony’s backroom, ready to sign on the line, or, if the play turned sour, walk.


MCS Gear Ratios & Top Speeds

Saturday, July 02, 2005
Mini Cooper S Gear Ratios
       <= Jun 2004  >= Jul 2004
Gear Ratio
1 11.425 12.789
2 7.181 7.793

3 5.397 5.651

4 4.407 4.615
5 3.656 3.828
6 2.986 3.126
R 11.13 11.944

Top Speed by Gear

* limited by vehicle top speed
@ 6750 RPM

Build date during or after Jul-04

Top Speed (km/h)
Tire Size
Gear 195/55-16 205/45-17
1 61 61
2 101 100
3 139 138
4 170 169
5 205 204
6 222* 222*
R 66 65

Build date during or before Jul-04

       Top Speed (km/h)
Tire Size
Gear 195/55-16 205/45-17
1 69 68
2 109 109
3 146 144
4 178 177
5 215 213
6 217* 217*
R 71 70

Seven / Park Lane / Checkmate

Friday, July 01, 2005
22 June 2005: UK - This September, MINI will add three new models to the existing hatchback range – MINI One Seven, MINI Cooper Park Lane and MINI Cooper S Checkmate.

Since launch, MINI customers have always benefited from the availability of the cost effective Salt, Pepper and Chili option packages. These packages remain, but the ‘Seven’, ‘Park Lane’ and ‘Checkmate’ models add exclusive equipment and additional standard specification, giving the MINI driver even more choice when it comes to personalising their car.

Andy Hearn, MINI UK General Manager said: "MINI’s desirability in the UK continues to set it apart from its competitors. New and used car sales continue to rise and the arrival of ‘Seven’, ‘Park Lane’ and ‘Checkmate’ adds to the mouth-watering choices for potential MINI buyers. With the new models MINI is set to continue the excitement enjoyed over the last four years by both our customers and the Oxford factory."

All three new MINIs offer exclusive equipment, plus other MINI options as standard.

MINI One Seven

The new MINI One Seven exclusively features Solar Red metallic paint, ‘Seven’ cloth and ‘Seven’ interior trim, MINI Seven decals and 15" Delta spoke alloy wheels.

Additional MINI options which feature as standard on ‘Seven’ are Automatic Stability Control and Traction (ASC+T), sports leather steering wheel, rear spoiler, floor mats, passenger seat height adjustment, storage compartment pack, front foglights, manual air conditioning, on board computer, interior lights pack and white indicators.

MINI Cooper Park Lane

The new MINI Cooper Park Lane exclusively features Royal Grey metallic paint, ‘Park Lane’ leather and interior trim, ‘Park Lane’ decals, silver roof, two-tone sports leather steering wheel, 16" Bridge spoke alloy wheels and silver bonnet stripes.

Additional MINI options which feature as standard on ‘Park Lane’ are ASC+T, rear spoiler, chrome line interior and exterior, floor mats, passenger seat height adjustment, storage compartment pack, front foglights, automatic air conditioning, on board computer, interior lights pack, chrome mirror caps, front sports seats and white indicators.

MINI Cooper S Checkmate

The new MINI Cooper S Checkmate exclusively features Space Blue metallic paint, ‘Checkmate’ cloth/leather and interior trim, ‘Checkmate’ decals, silver roof and mirror caps, 3-spoke two-tone sports leather steering wheel, 17" Flame spoke alloy wheels and silver bonnet stripes.

Additional MINI options which feature as standard on ‘Checkmate’ are limited slip differential, floor mats, passenger seat height adjustment, storage compartment pack, front foglights, manual air conditioning, on board computer, interior lights pack, anthracite headlining and xenon headlights.

The three new models will join the existing seven model line-up of MINI One, MINI Cooper, MINI Cooper S, MINI One D, MINI One Convertible, MINI Cooper Convertible, and MINI Cooper S Convertible.


MINI United 2005


Misano, Italy
28-30 OCT 2005

Get ready for three days of thrills at the action-packed MINI United event. Immerse yourself in the wealth of festival activities, meet up with other MINI aficionados, watch the MINI being put through its paces and maybe even take a spin around the circuit yourself ...


2006 Mitsubishi Eclipse meets Acura RSX, Ford Mustang, and Mini Cooper

2006 Mitsubishi Eclipse meets Acura RSX, Ford Mustang, and Mini Cooper - Automobile Magazine:
Nothing about the Mini Cooper S promises speed, because there's nothing that looks big enough, from the narrow sixteen-inch tires to the 1.6-liter engine. But that's just the point, as the Mini also lacks weight, and its 2668 pounds give it a big advantage in this group. The smooth-running supercharged engine works willingly through the crisp six-speed transmission, and the Mini is quick to the quarter-mile mark, clings very well to the pavement in the corners, and reaches 135 mph.


2005 MINI Stock Tire Pressures

Remember: Tire pressures listed below are for COLD tires!


175/65 R 15 84 H
175/65 R 15 84 Q M+S

Front Normal Load: 30 psi / 210 kPa
Rear Normal Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa
Front Heavy Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa
Rear Heavy Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa

195/55 R 16 87 H
195/55 R 16 87 H M+S
205/45 R 17 84 V
205/45 R 17 84 V M+S

Front Normal Load: 30 psi / 210 kPa
Rear Normal Load: 30 psi / 210 kPa
Front Heavy Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa
Rear Heavy Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa

175/65 R 15 84 Q M+S
175/60 R 15 82 Q M+S
195/55 R 16 87 Q M+S
205/45 R 17 84 Q M+S
205/40 R 18 82 W

Front Normal Load: 33 psi / 230 kPa
Rear Normal Load: 33 psi / 230 kPa
Front Heavy Load: 38 psi / 260 kPa
Rear Heavy Load: 38 psi / 260 kPa


195/55 R 16 87 V
195/55 R 16 87 V M+S

Front Normal Load: 30 psi / 210 kPa
Rear Normal Load: 30 psi / 210 kPa
Front Heavy Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa
Rear Heavy Load: 35 psi / 240 kPa

205/45 R 17 84 V
205/45 R 17 84 Q M+S
205/45 R 17 84 V M+S
195/55 R 16 87 Q M+S

Front Normal Load: 33 psi / 230 kPa
Rear Normal Load: 33 psi / 230 kPa
Front Heavy Load: 38 psi / 260 kPa
Rear Heavy Load: 38 psi / 260 kPa

175/60 R 16 82 Q M+S
205/40 R 18 82 W

Front Normal Load: 36 psi / 250 kPa
Rear Normal Load: 36 psi / 250 kPa
Front Heavy Load: 41 psi / 280 kPa
Rear Heavy Load: 41 psi / 280 kPa

2005 Mini Cooper S Convertible Review

2005 Mini Cooper S Convertible Review:

2005 Mini Cooper S Convertible

When it was introduced here three years ago, there were questions as to the Mini's possibility of success in the American automotive marketplace. Small cars have rarely proven popular here, and ``premium subcompact'' as a viable American automotive category was a fine example of the mathematical concept of a null set.

Sure, there was an entertainingly cheeky marketing campaign aimed at young, relatively affluent potential buyers, but those were the people most difficult to fool. As it happened, the Mini was a resounding success.

Why? It wasn't nostalgia - most buyers weren't even born when the last of the original Austin/Morris Minis were sold here in the late 1960s. And the number of original Minis sold on this side of the pond was, excuse me, miniscule anyway.


Edmunds.com Announces Most Wanted Awards for 2002 Model Year; Mini Cooper Named Most Significant Vehicle of the Year

Edmunds.com Announces Most Wanted Awards for 2002 Model Year; Mini Cooper Named Most Significant Vehicle of the Year:
Edmunds.com Announces Most Wanted Awards for 2002 Model Year; Mini Cooper Named Most Significant Vehicle of the Year

Santa Monica, CA; October 17, 2001 - Edmunds.com, the Web's leading consumer resource for unbiased automotive information, today announced the winners of the fourth annual Most Wanted vehicle awards and named the Mini Cooper the Edmunds.com Most Significant Vehicle of the Year.

'The Most Wanted awards recognize the current model year vehicles the Edmunds.com editors would choose, for each of 30 popular vehicle categories, if we were spending our own money,' explains Karl Brauer, Editor-In-Chief of Edmunds.com. 'For this task, our demographically diverse editorial staff is guided by passion, not science, choosing vehicles we'd love to have in our own driveways.'


J.D. Power 2005 Vehicle Dependability Study

This study rates the dependability of 2002 models.

JDPowerGraph, originally uploaded by Melindhra.

Well, ouch. MINI is almost at the bottom.

But, in the defense of the car I adore, I will say that this was the FIRST production year of a completely new vehicle. There are bound to be problems. I wonder what the "problems" are though. There were lots of complaints about squeaks and rattles at the beginning of MINI. And let's face it. MINI owners tend to be much more aware of problems with their vehicle than the average car owner. Don't believe me? Take a look at the MINI2 forums under Faults & Fixes.

Kia Sedona was new too, but it's um ... a Kia. What's Volkswagen's excuse though?


New MINI webring