Subcompact hatchbacks made for running around in tight spaces, easy to park, and great fuel economy are great for city driving but one thing standard models lack is the fun aspect of their higher end trim counterparts; the 2016 Mini Cooper changes that. While the Mini costs more than your typical subcompact, it does deliver bang for your buck as it hits all the right marks for being a subcompact, as well as having the fun aspect lacking in the segment’s base models.
The 2016 Mini Cooper Aims to Have it All
Compared to the original Rover Mini, the BMW-built 2016 Mini Cooper nowadays has grown up literally as it is obviously larger than the old school Mr. Bean mini back in the day. Coming in with large 15 inch alloy wheels as standard. The body is still boxy while offering subtle curves to make the car look modern such as the streamlined headlights. The Mini comes in different engine offerings and for our review unit, it’s equipped with a turbocharged 1.5-liter three cylinder engine that delivers 134hp paired to the light body it makes the car surprisingly peppy while still being economical. The engine is mated to a six speed manual powering the front wheels.
The interior of the Mini Cooper is such a delightful place is it combines sophistication with simplicity and also a touch of the old school while keeping everything luxurious. To keep it short, the interior screams premium the moment you open the doors. Soft touch panels that can be customized to your preference, ambient lighting, the gorgeous 8.8 touch screen on the center console providing the most intuitive control over the car’s features in a pleasant looking user interface. Front passenger space is comfortable while the rear seats might be a bit limited for taller passengers. Cargo space in the four door hatch is just 13.1 cubic feet and expanding to 40.7 with the rear seats down.
Driving the Mini even if it’s not an S model or JCW model can still be fun. The suspension although very comfortable is tuned on the stiff side to offer stability as well as feedback for the driver keeping things interesting when tackling curvy roads. Pair the sporty suspension to the car’s inherent small size, low center of gravity, and light weight, then you’ve got yourself an agile and playful little runabout.
The 2016 Mini Cooper actually keeps things in balance offering quality, performance, as well as economy in a single package. When buying your Mini, it’s great to have choice in making your car, your own. However, it’s a bit more expensive compared to the competition. Stiff ride may be jarring on longer trips. Still, even for a lower end trim can deliver fun, character, quality, and economy all at the same time albeit for a higher asking price.