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JohnC

Mini One Petrol

My car was in today for its first service and I got a dark battleship grey Mini One 5 door as a courtesy car. It is a 1.2 litre turbo petrol I believe and it was well capable of keeping up with traffic and performance was really quite acceptable. No photos I am afraid but it was a dreadful colour, totally in keeping with the dark skies and torrential downpours today. Very depressing I would imagine even with the sun splitting the sky.

The main comment I would make about the engine is that it sounds a bit rough and gravelly but no vibrations or roughness make their way into the cabin. It just isn't an aural delight. Once over 3,000 it moves along pretty well and at low revs it still pulls pretty strongly. The car was showing a long term average of 42.5mpg although that couldn't have been too long given that it was a 65 plate with just over 2,000 miles.

The gearbox felt as though the central springing was almost too strong and was a bit clunky if I tried to change gear quickly. It was much more satisfying and felt more mechanically sympathetic to slow down the change a bit. The clutch was also a bit heavier than I had expected but was not excessively so - just not the light clutch you get in a French or Japanese car.

I hate to say I was a bit taken aback to find no cruise control or steering wheel controls. I paired my phone easily but with no buttons I have no idea how I would have answered or made a call. The speedo is terribly small and the car picks up speed very easily which could be a problem if the speed cameras are a bit sensitive. I ended up changing the screen so that the speed was shown in numbers as well, instead of trying to rely on a speedo which appeared to have only about half an inch between 30mph and 40mph.

One thing I noticed was that the windscreen seems to be miles away, the wipers small and the rear view mirror tiny but the seats were very comfortable. The steering was fairly heavy but it had a bit of feeling on the few occasions I was able to tackle a corner at more than walking pace and the firm suspension certainly gave the impression that the tyres would hang on for a very long time. I found it quite a good interaction with the driver.

It was too wet for me to try the back seat or any other features but I did open the boot and whilst it's pretty deep in height terms its strength would lie in accommodating a few shopping bags, not suitcases, unless a flight case counts.

In summary, it looks awful IMHO, the engine needs to be more refined but it feels a well built car which could be fun in the twisties and it has decent economy and performance. Just don't buy it in grey!

I have to say the whole service of my car was very well dealt with and finding I have a 5 year service pack which I didn't know about left me feeling rather odd as I walked out with an invoice that had zeros all over it and nothing in front of them!
Frank Bullitt

I'm a huge fan of 3-pots but agree, our friends MINI Cooper (1.5T) sounds oddly raspy in an unpleasant way - it never really goes away to be honest.

I think the current car is a retrograde step from the last one. Looks awful too, but I might have mentioned that before!
PR

Frank Bullitt wrote:
I think the current car is a retrograde step from the last one.


Can't agree with that. In terms of ride, handling, refinement, performance, interior ambience and quality the new one is a significant advance over the previous car. I also think the triple is a tremendous engine - it reminds me of half the engine in the 130i.

It's just a shame about those awkward looks. I could live with a 3dr on black 17s but we don't want to lose the extra practicality we enjoy in the current Clubman. The 5dr might be better in that respect but I really can't come to terms with the Maxi-esque styling, weirdly square doors and loss of frameless windows that results in an ugly strip of body colour on the inside.

My dad had a new Clubman Cooper S on loan for a couple of days last week and really liked it.
JohnC

I'd obviously left my anorak at home because I totally forgot that the engine was a 3 pot - that might account for the slightly odd sounds and the fact that it sounded (but didn't feel) rough. It did perform more than adequately and I was impressed with the mpg. The conditions didn't allow me to try it out properly or to extend the engine beyond about 4,000 but it all makes a bit more sense now. I will be better prepared next time to try it out properly.
Martin

It's a real shame about the styling, as the rest of the package looks great.  Having seen a few new Clubmans for real, I think it's a decent looking car (better than in pics) and still the pick of the range.  Even more so if the rumours of a 300hp/4WD version are true, but I won't hold my breath.
BeN

I really like the Mini One. I found it peppy and eager and willing to please, like a small car should.

I don't even mind the looks.
PG

The shock of the new is dissipating and I'm becoming used to the looks of the new 3 door. Still not so sure about the 5 door, but for people who don't remember the Austin Maxi, it may not be so bad.

I've yet to see a new Clubman on the road.

Comparing the 1.2 and 1.5 triples to the 2.0 S, I wonder just how much more economical they are in the real world?
Chris M Wanted a V-10

Re: Mini One Petrol

JohnC wrote:
I paired my phone easily but with no buttons I have no idea how I would have answered or made a call.

Is there a touchscreen on any of the display panels?

Personally I'm looking forward to the rumoured 300+ BHP version of the new Clubman especialy if it turns out to be AWD
JohnC

No touch screen. There is a large screen in the middle of the dash with buttons under it but I wouldn't want to have to stretch over there whilst driving, to make or answer a call.

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