2012 Mini Cooper Coupe and Roadster First Drive

by under Review on 06 Mar 2012 09:30:50 AM06 Mar 2012
-AA000C36E6
2012 MINI COOPER
Price Range
$25,500 - $74,500
Fuel Consumption
3.8L - 8.1L/100km
4RATING
PROS

Styling, Fun Drive, John Cooper Works, Go Kart Handling

CONS

Not much, Luggage Space, Stiff ride

Mini Australia has made the right decision to bring the all new Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster to our shores. Built at their UK plant in Oxford the Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster are now the 5th and 6th models in the Mini Cooper line-up, with the roadster being the first Mini open-top two-seater in its history.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


The Mini Coupe and Roaster are available in two trim levels – the Cooper S and the more powerful John Cooper Works. The great tradition of Mini continues. 

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Overview



The Mini Coupe and Roadster are packed with a long list of standard features, including automatic climate control, Bi-Xenon headlights, electrically adjustable exterior mirrors, Park Distance Control, height-adjustable seats and an audio system with MP3-compatible CD player and AUX IN connection. 

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


Options include Xenon Adaptive headlights (Lighthouse package), black headlight housing – Comfort Access and the Always Open Timer. The MINI Roadster can be upgraded to include the excellent MINI Connected infotainment and communications functions which includes Sat Nav.


The Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster full range is:
Mini Cooper S Coupe - $42,990
Mini Cooper John Cooper Works Coupe - $52,600
Mini Cooper S Roadster - $45,500
Mini Cooper John Cooper Works Roadster - $55,100

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Engine


Each of the Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster come with a choice of two fun and sporty engines. Each of the 1.6-litre engines have twin-scroll turbocharger and petrol direct injection, the first engine is a 135kW and is fitted to the Cooper S models and the other is a 155kW engine that is fitted to the John Cooper Works variants.

 
On our launch drive we spent time driving the John Cooper Works Roadster and the Cooper S Coupe. Both engines are quick and responsive and great fun to drive. We drove both the standard 6-speed manual and the optional 6-speed auto.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


The Engines Specs across the range are:
Cooper S Coupe – 135kW at 5,500 rpm and max torque 240 Nm at 1,600 – 5,600 rpm with an additional 20Nm on overboost under hard acceleration. Fuel Consumption is 6.3 liters per 100kms and Co2 Emissions 146 g/km. While you will get from 0-100km/h in 6.9.seconds


Cooper S Roadster – 135kW at 5,500 rpm and max torque 240 Nm at 1,600 – 5,600 rpm also with additional 20Nm. Fuel Consumption is 6.4 liters per 100kms and Co2 Emissions are slightly more at 149 g/km. While you will get from 0-100km/h in 7.0 seconds


John Cooper Works Roadster – 155kW at 6,000 rpm and max torque 260 Nm at 1,850 – 5,600 rpm also with additional 20Nm. Fuel Consumption 7.3litres per 100kms and Co2 Emissions 169 g/km. The JWC is also a quick it will fire you in topless fun from 0-100km/h in 6.5 seconds.

John Cooper Works Coupe– 155kW at 6,000 rpm and max torque 260 Nm at 1,850 – 5,600 rpm again it has the extra 20Nm available. The Coupe is slightly less thirsty than the roadster drinking only 7.1litres per 100kms and Co2 Emissions of 165 g/km. The JWC coupe is the quickest from 0-100km/h at 6.4 seconds.

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Interior


There is no mistaking what car you are in as soon as you jump inside this compact two seater. The layout inside is typical Mini from the large center mounted speedo to the rev counter mounted behind the steering wheel, the Mini’s is like no other. The car has a functional layout with traditional Mini switches focused around the center of the cabin.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


With no rear seats the front seats are comfortable and come with a choice of cloth or leather  with five colour trim options. Headroom in both the Coupe and Roadster is surprising – adequate enough to accommodate someone who is 6’2”.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


The boot space in both the Coupe (280 liters) and Roadster (240 liters) has enough for a weekend away or a trip to the supermarket, but not much else.

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Exterior & Styling


The Mini Coupe measures 3734mm in length (5mm longer than the Mini Hatch), It is also shorter than the Mini Hatch measuring 29mm less in height at 1378mm.

The Mini Roadster is off similar sizing to the Coupe coming in at 3734mm in length (5mm longer than the Mini Cabrio) however it is 21mm shorter than the Mini Cabrio at 1,393mm. 

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER



If you know about the history of Mini’s you will know that they previously been a two box design the Coupe and Roadster is a three box design. By that it means the three distinct segments: engine compartment, passenger compartment and boot.

The Mini Coupe and Roadster is a great looking small sports car, with short overhangs, styring over-the-wheel stance and high waistline typical of MINI. The car is different to any Mini you have seen before yet unmistakable you can tell it is part of the Mini family.

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster On The Road


Another day another adventure is the slogan that accompanies the launch of the Mini Coupe & Roadster and driving the car is a great adventure. When tackling twisting roads as expected the car has very little body roll and we experienced no under steer. However the backend did have a habit of stepping out under hard acceleration in corners.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


Fun, Fun, Fun is what the Mini’s are about and the Coupe and Roadster has it by the bucket load. The new active rear spoiler produces an extra 40kg of down force and is activated once you 80km/h to help keep the car stable at speed. The spoiler will retract once you slow below 60km/h, you can also activate the spoiler manually.


Both the Cooper S and the John Cooper Works come with a sports button that when activated makes a noticeable difference. The engine revs harder and the steering becomes move responsive. There is also a cool engine blip on the downshift that is only audible when sports mode is activated.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


Road noise was less evident in the coupe than the roadster, where it was a little on the nosier side. The run flat tyres that are a $200 option produce a stiff road that crashes over bumps.

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Challenge


When driving in the roadster you may find the road noise a little on the annoying on side – but it is a soft top. Even though you don’t lose any space with the manual rag top you won’t be lugging huge amounts in the boot.

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Verdict


Both the Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster are great additions to the current Mini line-up. Every time you get behind the wheel of this little dynamo you will have a smile on your face. If you are looking for a fun, two seater, sports car then the Mini Coupe or Roadster then you should take the Mini on a test drive.

Mini Coupe and Mini Roadster Competition


During their presentation at the national media launch Mini Australia earmarked a few cars they have in their sights and we agree the following should also be on your test drive list.:

A CarShowroom top pick and also a popular choice with new car buyers the top selling Mazda MX-5 ($42,460 to $53,655) has been around so long because it so good.

2012 MINI COOPER 2D ROADSTER


The Peugeot RCZ ($54,990 to $63,347) is a tough act to follow; this RCZ is one of the best looking cars on the road and is hard to bet on style


The Audi TT ($65,450 to $139,990) is the car that gave us European style in an affordable sports car but compared to the Mini it’s a fair bit more expensive.

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