DimON

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DimON last won the day on September 14 2019

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  1. The all new 2025 MINI Countryman S is finally making its official US debut. But you won’t see it at an auto show or other large event. Instead MINI USA is bringing the party to 96 MINI dealers around the nation and inviting MINI enthusiasts to experience it first hand. MINI USA is creating a roadshow that will travel from dealer to dealer bringing the new Countryman to the masses. Starting April 9 through the end of May, the roadshow will follow four regional routes concurrently, across MINI’s central, southern, eastern and western region dealer networks. You can find more information and sign up here. The 2025 MINI Countryman S – More Power, Space & Technology The U25 Countryman is a ground-up rethink inside and out. And it’s inside where we see some real revolutionary moves. But before we get to that let’s talk about pricing. The all-new MINI Countryman S ALL4 will have a starting base price in the US of $38,900. There will be no Countryman models below the S in the US market which means the base price has moved up dramatically. But with that comes a huge increase in performance and standard equipment. In the US, the MINI Countryman S ALL4 sees a considerable performance upgrade with an output of 241 horsepower and a blistering 295 ft-lbs. of torque. But it’s not just the power and torque that’s been improved. MINI has reengineered the car to make it more responsive and agile. That’s important because the new Countryman has also grown considerably. The U25 MINI Countryman is all new and based on the same platform as the new BMW X1 and X2. And since those two vehicles have grown, so has the Countryman. But that growth is more about what customers want. MINI tells us that the data clearly points to owners reluctantly moving away from the brand due size. It sounds obvious for a brand called MINI. But the brand feels they can grow the Countryman slightly while still appealing to those looking for something different and smaller in the segment. So MINI’s answer was to increase the size of the Countryman while introducing a new model to bridge the gap from the Cooper. That model is the electric Aceman which will have a footprint similar to the original R60 Countryman. That strategy was key for MINI being able to grow longer by over 5” and taller by 2”. R60 Countryman (’10-’16) F60 Countryman (’17-’23)U25 Countryman (’24-’32)Length4097 mm / 161.3 in4298 mm / 169.2 in4429 mm / 174.37 inHeight1562 mm / 61.5 in1557 mm / 61.3 in1613 mm / 63.5 inWheelbase2596 mm / 102.2 in2670 mm / 105.1 in2670 mm / 105.11 in MINI has a lot to talk about inside starting with that circular display. We’ve used the system in a handful of new MINIs and have come away impressed every time. But perhaps no more so than on the move when we really got to test (and pressure test) its newest feature. From the L2 autonomous driving to the augmented reality navigation, there’s a lot to take in. So we’ll let our recently published demo of the display and MINI OS9 do the talking. Aside from the infotainment system, MINI has made huge changes inside. The brand has moved away from leather and chrome and leaned into new materials in a way that we’ve never seen from other manufacturers. The result is impressive. The new Vescin leather alternative feels better than the typical leather found in MINIs. While it doesn’t quite match the suppleness of the Lounge Leather options, it’s very close. In fact the grade of Vescin on the steering wheel actually feels just as good. You can read much more about Vescin and why MINI has gone leather free in our exclusive report. For much more on the new Countryman, check out our full U25 section and if you’re in the US, you’ll want to see our 2025 Countryman Ordering Guide. To find the nearest MINI Countryman Roadshow event, visit minicountrymantour.miniusaevents.com. The post MINIUSA Debuts the 2025 MINI Countryman S Via An Official Roadshow Coming to Dealers Nationwide appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  2. The BMW Group (which includes MINI) and Rimac Technology have officially announced a long-term partnership. And the goal is truly exciting. To to co-develop and co-produce innovative battery technology for selected battery-electric vehicles. What does that mean for MINI? Surely this is meant for some BMW hyper car right? We think this will be much more and will eventually touch future MINI products. The current J01 Cooper E As with most automotive innovations, we see trickle down into the mass market. And with BMWs stated goal of having EVs account for 50% of global sales, it’s clear all cards are on the table. The BMW Group brings battery and electric drive system expertise amassed over more than 15 years to the partnership starting with the original MINI E. The original MINI E As an integral part of the Rimac Group, Rimac Technology stands out as a Tier 1 supplier specializing in electrification in the automotive sector. Its portfolio consists of high-voltage battery packs, e-axles, as well as electronics and software solutions. Rimac Technology products are designed, engineered and produced in-house to offer advanced technology with a high degree of customization. The long-term partnership with the BMW Group is a sign of the Rimac Technology transition from niche high-performance solutions supplier to high-volume Tier 1 supplier. And that’s where we see not just an opportunity for future electric BMW 3 Series (for example) to benefit but perhaps even a (soon to be) full electric brand like MINI. The Vision Neue Klasse The two partners will release more details about what form the strategic tie-up will take, as well as its scope and content, at a later stage. Separately from the new strategic cooperation, the BMW Group is preparing the debut of the sixth generation of BMW eDrive technology, which will bring another significant leap forward in all customer-relevant attributes, such as range and charging time. We’ll see this tech filter into the next generation Countryman around 2028. The post BMW Group & electric Hypercar Brand Rimac Announce Longterm Partnership appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  3. Who would have thought a video feed of what’s in front of you would be so incredibly helpful? That was our first takeaway as we began to venture out into Lisbon roads in the new MINI Countryman SE. However MINI’s new augmented reality navigation is a legitimate game changer and could make MINI’s navigation system the preferred option over even CarPlay or Android Auto. Before we get into the optional AR functionality, let’s talk about MINI’s new navigation system itself. Built in conjunction with a company called Mapbox, it’s been designed to surpass smartphone apps and typical in-car navigation systems in terms of capability and design. This is particularly evident in the design but also in the way the system renders complex data including 3D building data. In our experience the MINI’s new mapping software and interface is a dramatic improvement and feels as fast with traffic and data that seemed on par with Apple Maps and Google Maps. That’s due to the underlining system’s flexibility to integrate data from numerous sources and providers and push updates continuously. It was particularly interesting to see how it integrated with the electric Countryman SE by showing range prediction and EV-optimized routing. The system was also predictively downloading map data so that in cellular dead zones there was a seamless experience. But it was the design and speed in how it rendered data that was a showstopper. Not only does it fill the entire screen (something neither CarPlay or Android Auto do in their current iteration) but its speed and integration with the rest of MINI OS9 made it feel like the obvious choice as the default mapping software. MINI’s Augmented Reality navigation is enabled by the same array of 12 sensors that powers its autonomous driving features Using the new system in both the Countryman JCW and SE we were amazing at how fluid and intuitive it all felt. And then came its augmented reality functionality. MINI’s new Augmented Reality Navigation How MINI’s Augmented Reality Navigation Works Integrating directly into this new navigation system is the optional AR navigation (option 6UQ). The system helps to orient the driver at the precise moment that a turn is coming up by painting directions on the environment itself via the video feed in the circular display. The augmented reality view sits at the top of the display which we found to be smart placement given that it was closer to our field of view while driving. On the bottom is a top-down map view which is perfectly synced with the video and gives you a full picture of where you are as you get clarity on when and where to turn. It worked flawlessly for us and felt like a game changer for urban environments. Augmented Reality Navigation: Availability and Pricing Depending on market this option either can be had standalone or as part of a package. In the US it’s available on the Countryman (ordering guide) as part of the 7ED Comfort Package Plus ($1500) or 7ER Comfort Package Max ($2400) and the F66 MINI Cooper (ordering guide) with the Comfort Package Plus ($1,500). On the electric J01 MINI Cooper the augmented reality navigation is part of the XL Pack in Germany (8.180 €) on the J01 with the Favoured and JCW Trim. It’s available on the Classic Trim as part of the Large Pack (5.970 €) and unavailable entirely on the Essential Trim. The forthcoming J05 MINI Aceman will have the same option and will likely be handled in a similar way depending on market. The post MINI’s New Augmented Reality Navigation is Real Progress appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  4. MINI is launching an entirely new range of accessories inspired by the new generation MINI Cooper. Check out the full collection, photos of our favorites and MINI’s official press release about it below. Official Release: Commitment to a brand can be expressed in a variety of ways. MINI fans and customers can also underline this outside of their own vehicle in everyday life: with the new MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024, they are always and everywhere connected with their favourite brand. The collection combines brand-typical style and functionality. Graphic details of the MINI Cooper design characterise the new MINI lifestyle products. A high proportion of reclaimed materials characterises the responsible production of the new product line. For example, production waste is collected and reclaimed in the same way as nylon and PET. New textiles for the MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024. The main motifs of the new collection are based on the front of the new MINI Cooper. One of the many highlights is the MINI Car Face Detail T-shirt with a stylised graphic of the typical MINI round headlight. If you like it particularly comfortable, slip into the MINI Outline Print Hoodie. The outline of the new MINI Cooper headlights and radiator grille playfully stretches across the front and back of the hoodie. The colour concept for the MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024 is based on the contrasting colour scheme of the new MINI family. For example, the new MINI Caps combine the bright shade of Rebel Red with the new Vibrant Silver through colour blocking. All garments are made from a mix of organic and recycled cotton or are made from 100% organic cotton. The entire fashion collection is produced in Portugal. Long-lasting companions for everyday life and travelling. Whether for an extended weekend trip or shopping around the corner, every piece of luggage in the MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024 impresses with carefully thought-out details. The timeless MINI Duffle Bag is available for all those who prefer a classic look. The travel companion is made of durable, water-repellent, recycled PET and offers plenty of space in the spacious inner compartment. A two-way zipper makes packing easy. On the go, the travel bag with removable shoulder straps can be carried either by hand or over the shoulder. When traveling, the MINI Cabin Trolley with the embossed MINI logo is a durable and handy companion. Thanks to the four quiet wheels, the lockable hard-shell case can be moved effortlessly and quietly when travelling. The large inner compartments are divided into several areas and allow you to organise your luggage. Like all the inner linings of the new MINI bags, the MINI Cabin Trolley features the characteristic pattern of the seats in the new MINI Cooper. Smaller accessories such as the handy MINI Car Tile Notebook or important documents are safely and stylishly stored in the new MINI Car Face Detail Musette shoulder bag. When shopping, the water-repellent MINI Car Face Detail Shopper offers plenty of space and can be carried comfortably on the long shoulder straps. The brand-new MINI Laptop Bag made of high-quality, recycled nylon reliably protects electronic devices even when you’re on the go thanks to the padded inner compartment. Particularly handy: an open compartment on the back allows the laptop bag to be conveniently connected to the telescopic handle of a trolley. Laptop bag, travel bag and backpack from the “Urban Series” of the new MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024 are comfortable and secure to hold thanks to their woven structure. The woven pattern is based on the textile strap on the dashboard in the cockpit of the new MINI family. With these design details, fans of the brand carry a part of the MINI world with them everywhere. Accessories from MINI. The stylish accessories in the new collection provide even more MINI moments in everyday life. The Stainless steel keyring in the shape of the new MINI Cooper or the new MINI Aceman crossover model are a must-have for all MINI fans. The MINI Colour Block Travel Mugs are available in two sizes for the perfect start to the day. Its double-walled vacuum insulation keeps your favourite drink warm on the go. Of course, the mugs fit in the MINI drink holder. A lockable Push-to-drink opening prevents leakage. And for cool refreshments, there is a new edition of the popular MINI Water Bottle Colour Block. With MINI through sun and rain. Two classically shaped sunglasses expand the MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024. Both models are made of high-quality, reclaimed material and combine a high-gloss black frame with dark green lenses. But the collection also sets stylish accents against grey skies with the new MINI umbrellas. The models have been tested in the wind tunnel and are available as a foldable version or as a comfortable stick umbrella. Colourful MINI products for kids. Playfully and safely exploring the environment — no problem with the MINI Alu Balance Bike for children. Thanks to the adjustable seat and handlebars that grow with the child, the balance bike will accompany little MINI fans for as long as possible. A handle on the saddle makes lifting easier when needed. The clothes for children from the MINI Lifestyle Collection 2024 are made from 100 percent organic cotton or a mix of organic and recycled cotton. In summer, T-shirts with a circumferential MINI Cooper print protect against UV radiation. In cooler weather, the MINI Sweatshirt Car Tile for children keep you warm thanks to the cuddly inner lining. And in a romper suit with a red MINI Cooper print and matching neckerchief, even very young MINI fans are discovering the world in style. MINI Accessory Gallery The post New MINI Lifestyle Collection Inspired by the New MINI Cooper appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  5. MINI USA and the MINI John Cooper Works Team are prepping for another season in the esteemed Touring Car (TC) and Touring Car A (TCA) classes of the 2024 SRO TC America series. The team will be campaigning several F56 MINI Cooper JCW models looking to once again take some titles. You can watch the team’s two races over the weekend on Saturday and Sunday below: Back in the driver’s seats are Cristian Perocarpi, piloting the #37 MINI JCW PRO in the TC class, and P.J. Groenke, driving the #62 MINI JCW in the TCA class. Joining the ranks this season is newcomer Scott Thomson, steering the #66 MINI JCW PRO in the TC class. Adding to the excitement, MINI USA and the MINI JCW Team will unveil a special rooftop graphic series, debuting a fresh design on the roof of Perocarpi’s #37 MINI JCW PRO at each race weekend. To kick off the series, Perocarpi’s ride will pay homage to the 60th anniversary of MINI’s triumph at Monte Carlo in 1964. Recognized for their iconic white roofs, MINI vehicles continue to offer roof graphics and multi-tone options, allowing owners to personalize their rides. This season also marks the return of the MINI Technician Race Crew Program. Throughout the race weekends, MINI dealer technicians will provide invaluable support to the team during practice, qualifying, and race days. Drawing from their expertise gained from working on MINIs daily, these technicians play a crucial role in the team’s success. Last season, the team garnered support from over 20 skilled MINI dealer technicians and earned the esteemed title of Crew of the Year, as voted by the series’ credentialed participants and competitors. This weekend, the team will be bolstered by four MINI dealer technicians, hailing from MINI of Hawaii, MINI of Stevens Creek, and MINI of Portland.Luis Perocarpi, team owner of LAP Motorsports, expressed his anticipation for the upcoming season, stating, “We are looking forward to another great season in the SRO TC America series. Building on the momentum of last season, which saw 21-year-old Clayton Williams clinch his first Driver’s Championship in the TC class, the team aims to replicate their success. Perocarpi, then 20, secured seven podium finishes in the #37 MINI JCW PRO last season, including second-place finishes at both Circuit of the Americas and Road America. Meanwhile, veteran driver Groenke captured three podiums in the #62 MINI JCW in the TCA class, including a memorable victory at Virginia International Raceway.The MINI JCW Race Team concluded the 2023 SRO TC America Series as runners-up for both the Manufacturer’s Championship and Team Championship, setting the stage for an electrifying 2024 season. The post Watch The MINI JCW Race Team Kicks Off the 2024 Season in Sonoma appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  6. The new MINI Cooper features not one but two completely new and totally vegan seat designs. Clad in a synthetic leather called Vescin, the seats have a revised shape and new features. But what you get depends on what version of the Cooper you want. Let’s start with what’s different about the seats in the two new models. The petrol powered F66 MINI Cooper and the electric J01 Cooper are designed to look identical to the casual observer. But the more you look the more you see differences. One of those key differences are the seats you sit on. The J01 Cooper has a different design as compared to the F66 including fixed headrests. Sitting in both back to back it’s clear that MINI has done an extraordinary job of creating consistencies across two fundamentally different cars. They feel almost identical to us and any differences we noticed might simply be in our heads. But inspecting the seats closely reveals some design differences. Thanks to a bit more interior width, F66 Cooper features the same exact seats found new U25 Countryman. This means we’ll see the same seat geometry. The J01 on the other hand, features an all new design with a shape that’s shaped subtly different The F66 base sport seats. Note the slightly different shape and movable headrests compared with the optional JCW seats. Can Vegan Seats Feel Better Than Leather? MINI is making a big move to become a more environmentally focused company. That started years ago with more sustainable manufacturing and painting processes and starting with the new generation of MINI, it now extends to the interior with a fully vegan replacement for leather. Why? There’s a big environmental impact due to the production of leather in the quantities that companies like MINI need. So much so that MINI has made the bold decision to eliminate leather from its coming starting with the all new J01 MINI Cooper electric The Vescin seats available on the U25 Countryman – the same design as in the F66. What’s wrong with leather? It’s complicated but suffice to say it’s not the most natural and environmentally safe thing to produce. It’s also not aligned with MINI’s brand image of being environmentally conscious and animal friendly. But how do you replace something as iconic as leather seats? In short you find a more environmentally friendly alternative that’s actually better to touch and lasts longer. BMW and MINI are so confident in products like Vescin (BMW’s version I called Sensafin – an improved version of Sensatec) they they’re already being used in several cars with MSRPs well over $100,000. The F66’s Vescin & Cloth sport seats Hands-On With Vescin What’s it like in person? Over the course of the past 9 months we’ve had a handful of opportunities to experience MINI’s replacement for leather, Vescin. Driving the new Countryman and experiencing it in the J01 electric Cooper and F66 petrol Cooper. Here’s what we’ve found. Getting into a new MINI with Vescin for the first time it’s clear that Vescin is a step-up from what we’ve known as Leatherette. In the all the handful of new MINIs we’ve experienced it in the seats were softer to the touch than leatherette and felt much more supple. But how do they compare with leather? In short very well. Compared with the standard Chesterfield or Cross Punch leather seating, Vescin feels softer and more premium. Not surprising given that MINI’s standard leather is almost a veneer over other materials. Comparing it with the (formally) optional Lounge Leather things are bit tougher for the Vescin. It can’t quite match the buttery feel – at least on the seats. The Vescin on MINI’s sport steering wheel does approach that suppleness interestingly. Could we see this grade of Vescin eventually show-up on seats as an option? The JCW Sport Seats with fixed headrests in the U25 MINI Countryman JCW Our Early Verdict The concept of taking leather out of cars has become emotional for some. But the reality is real, full grain leather doesn’t exist in cars unless you’re well into the six figure price range. What we’ve had with MINI’s mid-tier leather is essentially a veneer applied to leatherette on about 80% of seats (the rest is leatherette). And in our experience it can scratch, stain and eventually crack with use. While Lounge Leather is much higher quality, even that will suffer with age unless you like the patina of cracking bolsters or religiously take care of it. Vescin solves all of those problems with an easy to clean, long lasting product that happens to be much more environmentally friendly to make and is 100& recyclable. Crucially it looks and feels better than the mid-tier leather we’ve come to know in MINIs. And there’s hope for a higher quality version as well given the Vescin on the steering wheel we felt was on par with the best Lounge Leather we’ve even experienced in MINIs. Add in the ability to stay cooler in extreme heat and it seems like a real step forward. The Vescin on the Sport steering wheel feels like a higher grade. Yet final verdict will have to come after a few years of living with the new material. While Leatherette has proven to be incredibly durable (more so than leather in our experience), we’ll withhold judgement on that front until we have real data. Until then Vescin looks and feels very promising in our initial experience. As much as we love the feel of that optional Lounge Leather in MINIs, we’re ready to move on to something all around better and more affordable. The post In-Depth: MINI’s Redesigned Vegan Seats in the F66 & J01 MINI Cooper appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  7. When you first look at the F66 in person it feels eerily familiar. That’s because it’s heavily based on the F56 which we’ve known since 2014. But how does it look in real-world photos and hands-on? Let’s take a look. MINI has pushed the headlights forward and made them slightly more upward. Forget everything else you think you know about the new F66 Cooper, this subtle change really makes a difference. It means that this car feels more upright and a little closer to the R50 and R56. It also marks this car out as different than the sleeker J01 MINI Cooper EV. Even though MINI made the decision to heavily revise the F56 rather than to create an entirely new car, there’s almost nothing that the designers left untouched. The exterior design is evolved to match the J01 MINI Cooper with the goal to make them look identical to the casual observer. MINI’s hope is that a potential buyer would be choosing ICE versus EV without styling differences to muddy the waters. MINI designers have applied the minimal design language we’ve seen on the J01 MINI Cooper by eliminating all non-functional vents, scoops and design elements. This has resulted in the F66 looking more elegant and minimal than it’s predecessor and (in our opinion) closer to the original aesthetic of the classic Mini. There’s also a revised name to go along with an entirely refreshed car; MINI Cooper C as well as the more familiar MINI Cooper S. What’s the “C” stand for? According to MINI it’s short for “Core”. The “C” and “S” model denotations will apply to all petrol powered MINIs while we’ll see “E” and “SE” on all electric models. Performance Upgrades for the F66 MINI Cooper C & Cooper S MINI has upped the ante in terms of power with both models. The F56 Cooper is getting a 14% power upgrade going from 134 hp to 156 hp in the F66 Cooper C. This change takes the C from 0-62 mph (0 to 100 km/h) in 7.7 seconds. ModelF56 CooperF56 Cooper SF66 Cooper CF66 Cooper SPower134 hp189 hp156 hp 204 hpTorque162 lb-ft/1480 rpm206 lb-ft/1350 rpm 170 lb-ft/1,480 rpm221 lb-ftTransmissionManual/DCTManual/DCT7 speed DCT7 speed DCT The more powerful F66 Cooper S gets a less dramatic 7.4% horsepower boost from 189 to 204 hp but sees a significant torque increase to 221 lb-ft. This gets the new F66 Cooper S to 62 mph in 6.6 seconds (60 in 6.3 seconds). And keep in mind these are both likely a conservative numbers knowing how BMW calculates figures. Future Petrol Powered MINI Cooper Models As with the F56, the F66 will spawn two other variants; the five door hatch (F65) and convertible (F67). F66 MINI Cooper (three door)F65 MINI Cooper (five door)F67 MINI Cooper ConvertibleCooper C 2-door hardtop (F66)Cooper C 4-door hardtop (F65)Cooper C Convertible (F67)Cooper S 2-door hardtop (F66)Cooper S 4-door hardtop (F65)Cooper S Convertible (F67)Cooper JCW 2-door hardtop (F66)Cooper JCW Convertible (ICE) The F56 vs the F66 – subtle differences abound The F56 vs the F66 The Surprising Differences While the F66 is based on the F56, the dimensions aren’t identical likely due to styling and even an few engineering changes. For instance the F56 has a length of 3863mm vs 3876mm for the new F66. The reason is the revised front and rear bumper design. But more interesting is the height change. The F56 is 1414mm vs the F66 which is higher at 1432mm. This is due to MINI increasing the standard wheel size of the Cooper from 15? to 16? wheels while increasing the tire size slightly as well. But most interesting is the width change. The F56 Cooper has a width of 1727 mm vs the F66 which is wider at 1744mm (both without mirrors). That 17mm difference may not sound like much but BMW and MINI don’t typically increase the width of a car solely because of aesthetics. This change is due to wider wheels and tires (205mm to 215mm) that allow for a more concave wheel design on the Cooper S and JCW (which we’ll see later this year). ModelF56 CooperF56 Cooper SF66 Cooper CF66 Cooper SLength (mm/in)3863mm / 152.1 in3863mm / 152.1 in3876mm / 152.6 in3876mm / 152.6 inHeight (mm/in)1414mm / 55.66 in1414mm / 55.66 in1432mm / 56.4 in1432mm / 56.4 inWheelbase (mm/in)2495mm / 98.23 in2495mm / 98.23 in2495mm / 98.23 in2495mm / 98.23 inCurb weight (kg/lbs)1256kg / 2,769 lbs1289kg / 2,841 lbs1260kg / 2,778 lbs1285kg / 2,832 lbs The MINI Cooper Manual Is Eliminated As the F56 production ended over 50% of JCW hardtops sold in the US were equipped with the manual transmission. So this change is a big one for some markets and certain models. But the economic realities of complying with European legislation have forced MINI’s hand which means the F66 will have only one transmission across the line-up. That transmission is the familiar dual clutch 7 speed with some small refinements. Let’s hope that adds up to quick shift times. The move to replace the manual is all about the costs associated with meeting European emissions standards. While North America doesn’t have the same requirements, the case couldn’t be made due to investment required vs the expected sales. Even with a 50% take rate on the JCW for instance, that quantity can’t pay of the costs associated with further developing and/or maintaining the option. Making this change even more dramatic is MINI’s new dash mounted gear selector. Designers have replaced the center console mounted gear lever with a small dash mounted toggle. The rational is logical as the design simplifies the process of selecting park, reverse or drive while freeing up interior space for storage, screens or other functionality. More importantly MINI still offers wheel mounted paddles for manual control of the DCT. Read our first impressions of this new shift lever here. The F66 2025 MINI Cooper Model Range Produced in Oxford, the F66 will take over as the F56 ends production in February of 2024. That means we’ll see the first F66 MINI Coopers roll off the line next March as the plant begins it’s pivots into a new generation of MINIs. The F66 MINI Cooper FamilyDrivetrainStart of ProductionF66 MINI Cooper155 HP (Petrol)03/2024F66 MINI Cooper S200 HP (Petrol)03/2024F66 MINI Cooper JCW231 HP (Petrol)11/2024F65 MINI Cooper 5 Door155 HP (Petrol)07/2024F65 MINI Cooper S 5 Door200 HP (Petrol)07/2024F67 MINI Cooper Convertible155 HP (Petrol)11/2024F67 MINI Cooper S Convertible200 HP (Petrol)11/2024 F67 MINI Cooper JCW Convertible231 HP (Petrol)03/2025** unconfirmed As you can see above the changeover will happen in three phases. The first is the iconic two door Cooper which is be available at launch in Cooper and Cooper S models (the Cooper C Comes to the US in the fall). Next will be the five door F65 MINI Cooper launch in both Cooper and Cooper S models. Finally the brand will launch its last F66 variant, the F67 convertible in Cooper and Cooper S models. We believe the JCW F67 will either launch simultaneously or follow in March of 2025. The highly anticipated F66 MINI Cooper JCW will likely launch this fall and begin production in November. Head over to our first hands-on experience with the all new F66 MINI Cooper if you want to hear our initial impressions. And make sure to let us know what you think of MINI’s last ever ICE powered Cooper in the comments. 2025 F66 MINI Cooper S Gallery The post New Photos Give Us Best Look Yet at the F66 2025 MINI Cooper S appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  8. MINI sales in the U.S. totaled 6,369 vehicles in the first quarter of 2024, a decrease of 12.6% vs the 7,284 vehicles sold in the first quarter of 2023. According to MINIUSA and several dealers MotoringFile has spoken with, here’s why. For starters the change in sales volume for MINIUSA this quarter is attributed directly to the planned 2025 model changeover. MINI USA is currently readying the launch of an entirely new product portfolio later this year and inventory isn’t at ideal levels. Making matters worse customers have been unable to order new cars until recently. Which brings us to the second issue. A lack of information (beyond MotoringFile) has made it hard for buyers to understand and visualize the new products. While that’s largely solved with the new configurator, cars still aren’t at dealerships. Finally there’s the real issue of the range on lots (F56 etc) being long in the tooth. Despite the refreshes most of those cars have been around for almost a decade. Q2 will be equally interesting as MINIUSA will be getting new models but only portion of the range. We won’t have the entire lineup until late summer. And even then the US won’t have the new electric MINI Cooper which likely won’t begin sales until well into 2026. The post MINIUSA sales Down Early in 2024 Due to Model Changeover appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  9. It’s April Fools’ Day and MINI once again has skipped the festivities. But we’ve got you covered with some of the brand’s greatest hits over the last 20 years. While there have been plenty of other pranks created by MINI regional subsidiaries around the world (including MINI global), these are our favorites. However if we missed one that deserves to be on the list – comment below 2002 MINI INTRODUCES REVOLUTIONARY THIRD HEADLIGHT: ‘CENTERLITE Another Example of When Three is More Fun than Two A MINI showing the ‘Third Eye Fog Buster’ Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey, April 01, 2002…While most cars now come with either two or four front headlamps, MINI has introduced a groundbreaking third headlamp specifically for foggy English weather. The third lamp is situated in the air-intake position, which previously fed the MINI Cooper S supercharger. Re-routing the air induction through a ‘hairdryer technology’ sub-mounted pump, has freed up this position for the ‘fog-busting’ third eye. MINI’s xenon headlamp technology has also been further developed for the center-mounted lamp. This revolutionary new technology emits a super-heated beam that dries out fog up to 100 feet ahead of the car and dramatically improves visibility. A spokesman for MINI UK said; “We are delighted to be getting this technology as a world first. I have so often been caught out in foggy weather while bringing home my fish ‘n’ chips. This breakthrough really is a godsend, me old mate.” The dubious U.S. spellings for ‘centre’ and ‘light’ have been combined to form the trademark name of the system; Centerlite’ tm. . ‘Centerlite tm can be used with the main headlights on or off, thus when using only the ‘Centerlite’ MINI can even more closely resemble the motorcycle riding experience. While trials in the UK are proving successful, MINI admits that work has to be done to improve battery power for the third lamp. The large battery requires the removal of the rear seats and raising the roof height by 3 inches. No word as yet whether this ‘fog-busting’ technology will make the U.S. market where cold, foggy conditions are not so prevalent. Newfoundland, however, has the item pre-ordered as a 100% standard feature. The standard two-lamp MINI Cooper went on sale at MINI dealers on March 23 2002. With an MSRP of $16,850 including delivery charges, the car will be joined by the even livelier, $19,850 MINI Cooper S in the coming weeks. 2003 REMOTE CONTROL STEERING AVAILABLE ON MINI Little Car Crammed with High technology Sets New Standards in Convenience Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey April 1, 2003… MINI is well known for packaging high-technology into a small space and its latest innovation, MINI Remote Steeringtm, takes ease of ownership to new levels. With MINI Remote Steeringtm, MINI has produced the world’s first commercially-available full-sized remote control car. Based on the proven ‘Tamiy-ah-hah’ model racing technology, the new system allows MINI owners to remotely operate their cars up to a distance of 150 feet. Now, avoiding the rain is simple. Thanks to Remote Steering, MINI comes right to your door. This system provides a number of benefits. For example, it allows owners to arrive at their favorite restaurant, be seated at their table and then remotely park their car in the street outside. Furthermore, an apartment dweller in Manhattan can remotely bring their car up from the basement garage and position it on the street, ready to go. Opposition to the new system has been voiced however. Valet Parker’s union president ‘Denton Dour said; ‘Hey, we loved driving this thing and now it looks like we’re out of a job…whaddya gonna do? ’ he opined. MINI Remote Steeringtm, is now also likely to give street racing a whole new perspective as tuners abandon their hot rods in favor of playing with their hand-held. MINI spokesperson, Donna Falforit said ‘Clearly this once again highlights MINI as a high technology product. We have thoroughly trialed this new system and apart from the occasional interference with light aircraft and TV remotes, we are happy with it. Pricing is not set, but we think it’ll be a winner, especially on a day like today.” Journalist note: MINI is the 2003 North American Car of the Year. (Seriously folks). 2004 MINI USA INTRODUCES 8 SPEED GEARBOX MINI’s Forward Thinking Adds More Fun with 2 Speeds in Reverse Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 1, 2004… Hot on the heels of the announcement of the new MINI Convertible, MINI has announced the world’s first 8-speed gearbox, now with 2 reverse gears. Research has shown that MINI owners have the highest ‘FGF’ score (Fun Going Forward) on the road and so MINI engineers have developed a 2-speed reverse gear to increase the ‘FGB’ (Fun Going Backward) score to a similar level. Called Double Back Shifting (or Double B.S.), the new system adds a second reverse gear and thereby allows MINI owners to reverse faster than the competition to speeds of up to 40 mph. As well as increasing the FGB score, the new system, along with MINI’s unique size, gives owners an almost unfair advantage when finding those elusive on-street parking spaces: If the driver overshoots the space, they can simply reverse in double quick time using B.S. to zip neatly into the space. MINI gearbox engineer, Geary Ducshan said: “We worked hard to add this extra gear into the transmission. We are delighted with the results, the only disadvantage being the new larger box now takes up much of the passenger foot well, but it’s a price worth paying.” The system has further advantages. Competitive minded drivers are clearly excited by this news and the SCCA is now looking at a reverse autocross challenge where MINI owners can enjoy B.S. to the max. Pricing has yet to be announced, however, a MINI spokesman, said “this development is perfectly timed as there is no better day than April 1st to announce B.S.” 2005 MINI USA ANNOUNCES NEXT NEW SPECIAL EDITION; THE MINI PULLMAN Special Model to Promote Flexible Transportation Initiative Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 1, 2005… MINI, already known for cornering as if it were on rails, will now offer a special edition that will actually corner on rails. In light of the growing problem of gridlock and rush hour traffic, this special model is adapted to ride on all domestic gauge rail lines throughout North America. In conjunction with the North American railway system, an exclusive right-of-way has been authorized for the specially equipped MINI to commute via rail during peak hours in major urban centers. This access, once only limited to railway utility trucks is now available to MINI owners who order the special model. The MINI Pullman can access the railway at any major crossing gate provided care is taken not to enter into the opposing direction of prevailing rail traffic. A new feature in the onboard computer allows the MINI ‘motorman’ or woman to access individual rail line schedules to plan their travels while on the rails. The MINI Pullman comes fitted with a special wheel package that easily locks onto standard gauge rail thus allowing MINIs to corner on the roads and the rails with equal aplomb. An upgraded dual air-horn warning system comes standard on the model to alert inattentive pedestrians and vehicles as the MINI Pullman enters into crossing gate areas. To compliment this new model, MINI has created a line of apparel. Items from overalls to hats are available in a fetching grey ticking-stripe pattern. Accessories for the vehicle include a brass roof-mounted bell and a special auxiliary engine exhaust stack that mounts on the bonnet. For four additional passengers, a specially adapted hitch system allows for the MINI Pullman owner to add the accessory Commuter Caboose. “Access to the national system of underground subway rail is under consideration, once the logistics of accessing the track through individual subway stations can be solved” said national railway spokesperson Lou Komodeff, “We look forward to sharing the rails with MINI as long as they are ‘going our way.” MINI spokesperson, Hugh Moore said, “MINI has mastered the art of cornering on the roads. Now we can claim that MINIs do literally corner on rails.” MINI has scheduled the first prototype testing on public railways to commence today, April 1st, 2005 ? 2006 MINI USA ANNOUNCES NEW “BUILD YOUR OWN’’ PROGRAM Virtual Experience Becomes “Reality” for Owners to Build Their Own MINI at Home Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 1, 2006… Because MINI owners love to customize their cars, MINI announces today a brand-new “Build Your Own” program that gives customers the hands-on experience to build their own unique MINI. MINI USA.com enables customers to easily configure their MINI online before ordering. This feature has been so popular that MINI has decided to create a unique pilot program to give select customers the opportunity to actually create the car of their dreams with their own hands. In this pilot program, all of the car’s components can be specially ordered on-line and the parts will be delivered in installments, much like a book club, starting with the chassis parts and body work and then moving on to interior trim and engine. “In 6 short weeks the customer can build their custom MINI in their own garage,” said Lou Spartz, MINI’s head of the Individualized Direct Ideal Order Trial program, or I.D.I.O.T for short. “Clearly, the greatest hurdle is in painting the body, so we will be sending owners a can of spray paint each week in the color of their choice – and of course, one for the contrast roof.” “This new MINI Build your Own program will be made into a reality TV program.” said MINI spokesperson, Hardy Harrah, “We plan to chronicle a year of creative MINI owners in action building their own cars and we expect the television broadcast to air April 1st next year. 2009 MINI TO INTRODUCE “PERPETUAL MOTION” MAGNETIC PROPULSION SYSTEM New magnetic system delivers world-leading fuel efficiency to MINI PR-0401 Hundreds, possibly thousands of miles range with magnetic power Drive across the USA in a MINI for just a few dollars Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, NJ, April 1, 2009… MINI USA looks set to take a world lead in fuel efficiency with the announcement today (April 1) of a revolutionary magnetic propulsion system that will allow a MINI to drive to several hundred, possibly even thousands of miles with little charge and no need for fuel. MINI USA has developed a unique Propulsion / Repulsion 0401 (PR0401) System that is just one short step away from perpetual motion in an automobile. MINI’s PR 0401 System uses a series of magnets situated in the MINI’s four wheel hubs to both pull and push the wheels in the desired direction, exploiting the magnets’ natural tendency to attract and repel. Not only does this system allow the MINI PR to travel extraordinary distances for just a few cents, it produces virtually no noise as the electric motor can be switched off once the car is moving. Professor Lirpa Loof, Head of Magnetic Attraction Technology at MINI USA, said: “The Mini E is already leading the way in EV performance, reliability and eco-friendliness but this amazing new system will push it onto another level. We could soon be seeing families travel across the USA from coast to coast for just a couple of bucks.” “The only energy this system uses is a small draw on the battery to start the vehicle moving forward with an electric motor, and then the magnets take over and their natural properties do the rest. This has to be the ultimate range extender,” he added. “Anyone who has played with magnets as a kid or travelled on a Maglev train will understand precisely how this technology works and the kind of performance we are talking about.” Once moving, only tiny amounts of electric current are required to switch on and off the magnets, as the polarity of the fixed and moving magnets is rapidly switched from positive to negative. The magnets first attract and then quickly repel each other pushing the wheels in the desired direction – either forward or reverse. One challenge that Professor Loof faced with the PR system was the speed of the MINI PR… and how to control it! The speed at which the magnets attract and repel each other is instantaneous, which means in theory the vehicle is capable of phenomenal speeds, restricted only by the time it takes to switch the magnets’ polarity and the wind resistance and drag of the MINI PR’s body. The MINI EV PR development vehicles are currently restricted to a top speed of 250 mph. “For years, engineers have dreamed of developing perpetual motion for transport,” said Professor Loof, “And thanks to MINI PR, it looks like we are almost there with a new model that will debut next April 1.” 2010 MINI USA TAKES AUTOMOBILE PERSONALIZATION TO A NEW LEVEL Revolutionary new paint system allows quick, unlimited exterior color changes on the new MINI. Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 1, 2010… MINI, a leader in the manufacturing of customized vehicles, is set to take personalization to a whole new level with a revolutionary paint system that will allow owners to change the exterior color of their vehicle as often as they change their mood. The ground-breaking MINIMagic paint system, exclusively available on MINI Clubman, will give MINI owners the chance to completely change their MINI’s exterior color in only a few minutes and with just the effort required to apply a single coat of wax – a world first for an automotive manufacturer. The MINIMagic paint system will be available with any of the Clubman’s stunning paint colors, starting this spring. “The introduction of MINIMagic will transform how owners select the exterior colors on a new MINI, offering even more ways to personalize their MINI,” said Jim McDowell, Vice President of MINI USA . “Gone are the days when our customers wondered if they made the right choice of paint color. With MINIMagic, if they change their mind, changing the color of their MINI can now be done as simply as changing a shirt or rinsing your hair from blonde to brunette!” he added. The new, innovative range of MINIMagic paint finishes are first applied at the production facility in Oxford, United Kingdom, as the first stage in a two-part process. All it takes for the customer to activate an on-demand color change is a simple application of the second part of the process – a quick wipe over the painted surfaces with the patented MINIMagic paint polish. In minutes, the transformation – from Light Coffee to Cosmic Blue for example – can be completed. The permanence of the color changes can be selected by the customer, with three different second-stage polishes available – one month, six months or permanent. If left alone, the one-month and six-month paint finishes eventually revert to the vehicle’s original paint color, a process that happens in just a few hours at the end of the chosen period. Paul Lisch, Head of Exterior Aesthetics and Paint Finishes at MINI USA, said: “MINIMagic will bring a whole new meaning to the concept of car cleaning and restoration. As easily carried out as a wash and a wipe, our owners can have a ‘new’ MINI Clubman that is capable of matching any atmosphere or any occasion.” The MINI Clubman, exhibiting some real ‘MINIMagic’, can be seen on the MINI display from April 1st during the New York Auto Show, held at the Jacob Javitz Center in New York City. 2012 NEW AMPHIBIOUS MINI COOPER YACHTSMAN TO LAUNCH IN NEW YORK… BESIDE THE HUDSON RIVER Official Release: Woodcliff Lake, NJ – April 1, 2012… MINI customers will be able to boldly go where no motorer has gone before when the all-new MINI Cooper Yachtsman makes its world premiere at the New York International Auto Show next week, right beside the Hudson River. Designed to bring MINI ownership to people who regard the 70 percent of the earth’s surface covered by water as their home, the new MINI Cooper Yachtsman is a corner-carving crustacean that promises go-kart-like handling and a sensational combination of amphibious* and landphibious performance both on and off the water. Certain to be as popular in New York harbor as it will be at the Jumeira Palm marina or Monte Carlo harbor, the MINI Cooper Yachtsman is fitted with a shark-resistant undercoating as standard, and can carve through water at speeds up to 61 knots, while promising an equally rewarding driving (but not diving…) experience – on-road or off-land. “Our exciting MINI Cooper Yachtsman is the ultimate extension of the MINI brand, expanding our line-up to seven models in the USA and offering consumers even more ways to enjoy MINI ownership in a manner best-suited to their individual taste and location,” comments Jim McDowell, Vice President of MINI USA. “The Yachtsman will become an instant status symbol, a car/boat combo that evokes ‘land/sea envy’ in equal measure. Originally endorsed by the British Royal Navy**, the Yachtsman brings a new level of versatility to MINI ownership. So, if you’re cruising along and someone yells ’Lake’ – no worries. Simply downshift, grab a life-vest, hit the water and let Yachtsman take care of the rest!” adds McDowell. Showroom appeal of the MINI Cooper Yachtsman is matched by dockside allure as the 169.8 inch long craft sports Reef Blue metallic paintwork contrasting with silver alloy wheels and matching silver rudder. The exhaust snorkel is finished in body color and the extendable rooftop antenna comes with a ‘get-you-home’ 20-ft white sail (in case of emergency) which can be deployed for zero-emissions sailing. With room to sleep two people, the cabin features waterproof rip-stop upholstery, seat cushions which double as flotation devices, and a Marine Chronometer for celestial navigation in the event of a sat-nav glitch. For junior ‘sailors’, the glove box holds MINI-branded water wings, a pirate flag and eye patch. Standard equipment features a six-foot marlin rod with roller guides, an international trolling reel with 130-lb test line and (on the port side) the latest MINI safety technology – FLOAT (the Frantic Lever Operated Active Trim) adjuster. On the starboard side there is a spring-loaded herring chucker. In line with MINI’s customizable nature, a full range of unique accessories for this latest addition to the MINI product line-up includes a Customizable Klaxon (choice of sea lion, porpoise, sperm whale, dolphin, seagull or mallard duck), and personalized Under-Hull Messaging – recommended factory fitted graphic options such as ‘Suck eggs, Kraken’ and ‘Mermaid Magnet’ are sure to be popular choices. On sale from April 1st as a model year 2013 vehicle, the Yachtsman combines typical MINI driving and boating fun with the same discerning craftsmanship, select materials, styling and all-round ‘typical British understatement’ that are hallmarks of the world’s leading boat builders. For propulsion, each MINI Cooper Yachtsman is powered by a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with a twin-scroll turbocharger, direct injection and variable valve control to generate 181 hp. Outdrive to the constant-pitch propeller is managed by a specially-fitted gearbox mounted mid-ship with six forward speeds. Although the new model weighs 4,600 lb (fully laden), the sprint from 0 to 60 mph is completed in 6.6 seconds (on land) and in 2.4 minutes (on water). Top speed (on land) is 141 mph. Developed after extensive testing of punt prototypes on the River Isis (near MINI’s manufacturing facility in Oxford, England) and in the deep waters off Greenland (where The Kraken of legend lurks), the MINI Cooper Yachtsman is priced at US $236,000 and comes with a fully incomprehensible warranty that includes 3-year no-cost moorage, annual dry-docking and free barnacle removal, for the original captain. You can see the MINI Cooper Yachtsman on the MINI Stand at the New York International Auto Show in the Jacob Javits Center from Wednesday April 4th. Editors’ Notes *The Yachtsman is not the first amphibious Mini. The book ‘MINI MISCELLANY – Fifty Years of facts, figures, stories and oddities featuring the world’s greatest little car’ carried this interesting tale… “Bizarre as it may sound, a Mini entered the 1977 River Severn Raft Race. Longbridge engineers converted a standard Mini into an unsinkable four-paddle-wheel-drive amphibious vehicle which they christened ‘Aqua Min’. However, it was not the first Mini to swim. Nine years earlier, an amphibious Moke swam in the River Thames for the Sammy Davis Jr. film Salt and Pepper. Since the movie was a James Bond spoof, it was only right that the Moke should have machine guns fitted behind the headlights.” **And subsequently unendorsed. 2013 New MINI App “Connect Us” Creates MINI Centric Dating Service Official Release: April 1st 2013, Munich. Official Release: Now for something a little more romantic. The latest version of the MINI Connected App is playing cupid to make MINI fans’ dreams of finding the perfect partner come true. Connect Us is like nothing else out there on planet dating – and can only be used in a MINI. This is not just the world’s speediest dating service, it is also the most reliable. Here, at last, is a matchmaker that goes beyond personal interests, favourite activities and how you like to spend your free time – and gets down to the nitty-gritty: driving style. Connect Us compares how drivers like to treat their accelerator, steering wheel and brakes (as deduced by the MINI Driving Excitement Analyser) in the search for a compatible co-driver on the journey of love. Only if it detects a meeting of minds on the matter of driving fun will the app oil the wheels of romance between MINI fans. The Driving Excitement Analyser function of the MINI Connected App has been available for several weeks as a free download from the Apple App Store. But make sure you don’t take your eyes off the road just when things are getting interesting; the Connect Us, ahem, “update” can be downloaded on one day only: 1 April 2013. “Get connected, get matched up, get dating” is the name of the game when it comes to using MINI Connected’s vast well of possibilities to steer your way to love; indeed, this unique form of in-car infotainment makes the ideal wingman (or wingwoman). By hooking up to the internet via their Apple iPhone, MINI drivers can use the Google Local Search service to find restaurants, bars and popular sights, and then share ratings using foursquare. And they can also keep in touch with friends while on the move via Facebook, download their favourite music from AUPEO! and stay up to speed on issues of their choice with RSS news feeds. A user’s selections say a lot about their personality. But it’s only when you get behind the wheel, of course, that people get to know the real you. And that’s why the Connect Us function also checks out data collected by the Driving Excitement Analyser to deliver a precise comparison of drivers’ sprinting prowess, cornering ability and braking strategy. And only then, if two MINI drivers are on the same wavelength in how they handle their car, will Connect Us invite them to meet up in person. The go-kart feeling which has sparked such affection for MINI models down the years might just act as the catalyst for romantic emotions between their owners as well. Like all MINI Connected App functions, Connect Us is a doddle to use and intuitive to navigate – in familiar MINI style – by means of the MINI joystick, multifunction steering wheel and onboard monitor. Assuming their car is fitted with the MINI navigation system, all MINI drivers need to do after activating the Connect Us function is specify whether their perfect match should be male or female and how widely they wish to cast the net. Everything else is taken care of by MINI Connected – including, for example, a table booking at a restaurant that is guaranteed to be up both drivers’ street. The meeting point is then located by the navigation system; after all, if Connect Us had a motto it would surely be: “The MINI seeks so that its drivers shall find.” 2014 MINI Shoots And Scores: The MINI Paceman GoalCooper Official Release: April 1st 2014, Munich… The countdown is on in Brazil and soccer fans are gearing up for the biggest global sporting event of the year. Jerseys and flags are in huge demand but one question remains: what will be the car of choice for celebrating fans from mid June? MINI is sure to strike from outside the box with its homage to the beautiful game: the MINI Paceman GoalCooper. This top international player is based on the MINI John Cooper Works Paceman, and is equipped with all it takes to make it from the group stages through to the final. The MINI Design Team captained by Oliviero Weilinho combined the colours green, blue and yellow to come up with the exclusive Danielson multi-coloured exterior line, giving MINI an early 1:0 lead. The interior kit is far from off-side, astro turf floor mats in Brasileiro Green and the “floodlights” in the shape of a MINI LED interior lighting package give a stadium like feel. With this equipment aboard the MINI Paceman GoalCooper will set off “Mexican waves” on all four seats. It is match-fit when it comes to reliving controversial referee decisions and glorious goals via live web stream. A universal holder for smartphones and a rear holder for the Apple iPad will ensure comfortable viewing on the rear seat terraces. For relieving pre-match tension or enjoying some half-time downtime the MINI Paceman GoalCooper features a miniature table football set mounted on the Center Rail. The MINI Paceman GoalCooper is fully equipped for training between matches. The rear seatbacks can be folded over to turn the boot, which is fully clad in AstroTurf, into a football goal. The net is attached behind the front seats. The MINI Paceman GoalCooper has a top defence line-up making it very difficult for any striker to score. As soon as the Park Distance Control (PDC) sensors, in conjunction with the interior monitoring sensors of the alarm system, register a shot on goal, the electric tailgate is operated, instantly closing the tailgate, reflecting the ball and keeping the box clean. If a player successfully puts one past the ‘keeper’, he can share his success immediately with other MINI drivers. When the final whistle has been blown after 90 minutes the score is transmitted to the iPad in the MINI via a special MINI Paceman GoalCooper MINI Connected App. Thanks to intelligent connectivity the results can be compared online with other registered users at any time. The table is updated every day and at the end of the tournament the MINI Community World Champion will lift the trophy. The new star of the MINI Team will be officially presented on 1 April 2014. All details regarding transfer fees and contract periods will remain strictly confidential until then. 2015 World Premier: The New MINI Chrome Line Exterior Deluxe According to [Wikipedia], Chromium is a steely-gray, lustrous, hard and brittle metal which takes a high polish, resists tarnishing, and has a high melting point. The name of the element is derived from the Greek word chroma, meaning color, because many of its compounds are intensely colored. It is the basis for many bits and pieces that MINI has used in and out of its cars since the re-introduction of the brand in 2002. Chrome has always been part of MINI’s heritage, so much so that David Bowie designed a in 1999 to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the brand. The BMW Group has been conscious about preserving the Britishness of the MINI, which why today our beloved car company is introducing the F56 MINI Chrome Line Exterior Deluxe. **Official Release:** Munich. It has driving fun in its genes – and it seems that the chromosomes are responsible for its stunning appearance, too. The new MINI is dazzling wherever it goes, but the special equipment feature Chrome Line Exterior Deluxe finally transforms it in a truly irresistible eye-catcher. For decades, chrome surfaces have been applied to the headlamp, rear light and radiator grille surrounds as well as other typical design elements: for the first time, this feature is now extended to the entire body. The effect is instantly compelling: with the Chrome Line Exterior Deluxe, the MINI holistically reflects the aesthetic awareness of the brand and its fans. The exclusive special equipment feature developed exclusively for the MINI 3 door will be presented for the first time to a group of selected guests on April 1st 2015. By way of a precaution, MINI expressly points out to photojournalists who wish to attend the event that it will be compulsory to wear sunglasses and that it is not possible to permit the use of flash due to physically uncontrollable reflections. The special equipment feature Chrome Line Exterior Deluxe is the consistent continuation of a design principle that has been pursued ever since the classic Mini was launched in 1959. Chrome as an embodiment of unique visual details has been part of the MINI tradition for just as long as the go-kart feeling and the central instrument in the cockpit. Its sophisticated sparkle directs attention to those design features that have been typical of MINI for decades and make it the original in the premium small car segment. Since the launch of the latest generation of MINI, however, it is no longer enough to emphasise individual components. MINI has finally achieved the status of a fully integrated work of art. So it is only logical that the entire vehicle should be given a chrome surface as an optional extra. The new special equipment feature will also impact on production processes at the MINI plant in Oxford, UK. The hall lights will automatically be dimmed during assembly of the new MINI 3 door with Chrome Line Exterior Deluxe. What is more, the operating speed of the conveyor belt will be reduced so as to give employees the opportunity to check their clothing and hair in the reflection of the MINI body. 2016 MINI UK DEBUTS THE NEW MINI HIPSTER HATCH World Premier of MINI Hipster Hatch Instagram Filtered Windows Twin-deck cassette player as standard Fixed-gear drivetrain Upcycled alloy wheels, stonewash denim upholstery Official Release: Hoxton, London, April 1, 2016: MINI has whipped a fair-trade Peruvian cotton sheet off its latest model this morning in Hoxton, London. Featuring Instagram filtered windows, Twin-deck cassette player and a fixed-gear drivetrain, the new MINI Hipster Hatch launches today. Avant-garde and upcycled, the MINI Hipster Hatch is effortlessly stylish and the perfect companion for a spot of vintage clothes shopping, or indeed the odd trip to the market for artisan kale. Motorists no longer have to settle for the natural colour of their surroundings (#nofilter), thanks to the exclusive and fully adjustable Instagram filter on all exterior window glass. Live life in LO-FI. Or Clarendon. Or Crema. In fact, occupants can choose from 12 pre-loaded Instagram window filters and turn any journey into a nostalgic memory at the touch of a button. The new MINI Hipster Hatch has just one forward gear with a maximum speed of 25 mph. Taking inspiration from the ‘Fixie’ pedal bike, four of the forward gears have been removed to give the driver a greater feeling of control when popping out for a superfood smoothie. The stonewash denim upholstery means the four seater MINI Hipster Hatch is a match for even the tightest pair of jeans, allowing the driver and passengers to coordinate their outfits accordingly. Inside, a twin-deck cassette player harks back to when it was all about the music, allowing occupants to sidestep the mainstream with their own mixtapes. On the outside, MINI Hipster Hatch boasts alloy wheels carefully upcycled by hand from previous alloy wheels. “The MINI Hipster Hatch is like no other we’ve built before” said Ivana Nuwatto, senior external product launch experience curator at MINI UK. “Inspired by the kind of innovative thinking only found when you ignore the script and ask what those who refuse to be categorized want from a car – features like fixed gear drive, twin-deck cassette player, upcycled details and Instagram filtered windows to name but a few.” A limited number of MINI Hipster Hatch will be available, so if you’ve got FOMO, get one before they’re all gone. 2017 NEW ACCESSORIES FOR THE MINI CONVERTIBLE: THE JOHN COOKER WORKS PACKAGE. MINI special projects has cooked up an innovative accessories package for the MINI Convertible. The MINI Convertible with the MINI John Cooker Works Package. Official Release: Oxford, April 1, 2017. MINI is pleased to announce a new accessory that’s perfect for the culinary entrepreneur. The MINI Convertible can now be fitted with the new John Cooker Works package and turned into a mobile street vendor. The MINI Convertible receives a solid-oak food sales and preparation surface. This features an induction cooker with integrated fume hood. The vehicle’s generously proportioned 160 – 215 liter luggage compartment of the MINI Convertible stores the required cooling technology, while a high-voltage Natural Food Nanotechnology® battery ensures power supply and is charged by the standard brake energy regeneration system while driving. Food waste is further utilized by the NFN® battery system to sustainably power the unique vehicle. The solid-wood surface made from sustainably grown oak in Cornwall, folds to fit the contours of the interior when the roof is down and serves as a stable storage for food and beverages in spite of the light-weight construction technology used. The package meets all food regulation requirements and can be used for hot and cold dishes alike. Customers selecting this new pack benefit from a highly flexible food sales vehicle, with a menu of applications including selling sushi, ice cream or fresh juices. Only the driver’s seat needs to be folded down in order to install the MINI John Cooker Works Package. This creates an amazing amount of space under the solid-oak surface which can be used for storing ingredients and cooking utensils. Should the weather suddenly turn, the convertible roof can be closed in only 18 seconds with the food surface in place. Potential customers could include start-ups looking to prepare their culinary masterpieces directly in front of their customers’ eyes, or kiosk operators who need a spacious food presentation area, the MINI Convertible with John Cooker Works Package offers countless opportunities for businesses. The introductory price is €1.959,00 / $ 1.959,00 / £ 1.959,00 and the package can be ordered at selected MINI partners as of today. “The strikingly painted and backlit mirror caps and side scuttles in Citrus Yellow give the MINI Convertible an sharp street food look. We applied the knowhow we gained from our MINI Yours vehicle personalization program”, says Sue Scheff of the MINI Design Team. The Sport Stripes for the John Cooker Works Package are in Chilli Red and Berry Blue. “Street food businesses are a great complement to established restaurants and offer their customers fantastic variety. However, typical street food trucks are often too big and cumbersome for our city centers. The MINI Convertible can be used by street food vendors to whisk their food directly to the customer and even right onto festival grounds”, says Matt Erdee from MINI Business Innovation. The John Cooker Works Accessory Package perfectly matches the Salt, Pepper and Chilli MINI equipment packages. “The MINI Convertible is now even more unique than ever before and is the smallest multifunctional food truck in the world”, says Finn Gerfoud, Head of Development of MINI Special Vehicles. Be it on the streets of Shanghai, in front of Barcelona’s office blocks or whipping around tourist hotspots in London, the MINI Convertible with John Cooker Works Package is an eye catcher making life hard for the burger van chips or the corner café. The post A Look Back at the Best MINI April Fools Pranks appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  10. MINI’s new generation of cars are filtering into dealership globally as we speak and with it countless new options never before seen on the Cooper and the Countryman. Perhaps one of the most exciting new features is the new autonomous driving features that allow hands-free driving in certain conditions Powering this new feature is an array of sensors that give MINI’s ADAS (advanced driving assistance systems) a 360 view that detect and identify everything from people to large trucks. The centerpiece (literally) of this system, is an array of ultrasonic sensors positioned on the horizontal strut. This works in tandem with a suite of 12 sensors in total that give the car vision that sees through everything from the darkness of night to the intense snow. But unlike recent BMWs this array of sensors is hardly noticeable and is in fact the smallest sensor housing used to date in any BMW Group product. It’s part of a technology package that powers not only MINI’s autonomy features but everything from its new augmented reality navigation to pedestrian detection. A quick view of MINI’s autonomous driving features in action. With this system MINI has dramatically improved its active cruise that we’re told will be more weather proof and hehe less faults. It also allows MINI’s new Augmented Reality navigation to be incredibly precise in the complex environments. But the feature we’re most excited about is optional Level 2 autonomy MINI is calling Driving Assistant Professional. With the Driving Assistant Professional, the MINI Cooper and Countryman has partially automated Level 2 driving on highways for the first time. If you’ve been following MotoringFile all year you’ll remember us exclusively reporting on this feature last spring. The sensor housing is the smallest yet offered by the BMW Group When engaged, Driving Assistant Professional allows the driver to take their hands off the wheel at speeds of up to 37 mph (60 km/h), as long as they have their eyes on the road (as determined by an eye tracker) and are ready to intervene at any time. The small grey strips in the wheel light-up to tell you when the system is working or needs your attention. We’ve used this system in BMW’s extensively and it really does work as advertised – you can take your hands off the wheel entirely as long as your eyes are on the road. The car will stop, go, turn and even change lanes on command using the turn signal. The thin grey strip above “set” is one of the two LED lights that lets you know the system is active Once you reach 38 MPH the system switches modes and goes into a more simplistic autonomous setting which requires a driver’s hands to rest on the wheel. However the system works identically, following traffic, the curves of the road and will even change lanes based on the driver using the turn signal. However at these speeds the system requires hands-on the wheel or at least pressure of some kind. The petrol F66 MINI Cooper has its main array of sensors discretely hidden in the center of the grille. This feature has been optional on BMWs for years and in our experience is ideal for stop and go traffic. However MINI’s system adds a new wrinkle as it can identify gaps in traffic needed to change lanes to get to an exit. It then brings the vehicle to the optimum speed for assisted lane changes. The system will let you know when it’s successfully engaged via two green lights on the steering wheel. When it can’t detect your eyes (in hands-free) or hands (at higher speeds) those green lights being to flash orange. You can see that happen in the second video above as I try to demonstrate that it’s the wheel moving and not my hands. While MINI is focused on Level 2, hands-free mode intended mostly for traffic jams below 38 mph, it’s the hands-on mode (which works up to 85 mph) that you’ll likely find much more useful. In this mode the system uses a combination of adaptive cruise and steering input to follow well marked highways without intervention. It uses steering the lane guidance assistant, lane keeping, lane change assistant (with active side collision protection) and the emergency stop assistant to create a seamless and safe experience. We’ve spent 1000s of miles in BMW’s with a similar system and found it to be an excellent feature for anyone who does long stretches highway driving. While it doesn’t take over completely at highway speeds (your hands have to remain on the wheel), it lessens the cognitive load on those long road-trips. MINI’s Driving Assistant Professional is made up of two options: Driving Assistant (5AS) and the Driving Assistant Plus (5AT). The U25 Countryman and the F66 Cooper will feature this system at launch while the electric J01 MINI Cooper and J05 MINI Aceman will eventually get them. The post New Autonomous Driving Options on the MINI Cooper an Countryman appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  11. The highly anticipated new MINI USA configurator is now live! The new configurator is essentially the old experience with some small upgrades to accommodate the new way MINI is allowing customers to build their cars. It also is missing a few options and plenty of models that will come later this year. But at the very least, its not live and ready to help customers visualize their cars. An important companion to the new configurator will be our own 2025 ordering guide that helps to layout exactly what’s available and how best to spec your MINI: MotoringFile 2025 (F66) MINI Cooper Ordering Guide MotoringFile 2025 U25 MINI Countryman Ordering Guide While there are no surprises in this configurator we haven’t already reported, it will make certain things more evident to would be buyers. For instance the F66 MINI Cooper will come standard with a sunroof that cannot be deleted in the build. That could disappoint a few who prefer a lighter weight or simpler car. And for those who live in the southwest and are concerned about the fairly weak sunshades MINI has had, don’t be. The new version in both the Cooper and Countryman is much more of a full blackout shade. You’ll also notice just how prominently the two different “styles” that MINI USA is offering change the look of the Cooper. And then there’s the complete lack of options inside the Countryman JCW that might surprise a few. Basically you can have any color of interior as long as you like black and red. It’s also important to note that in the US there is no JCW “style” like in Europe or the UK (where it’s called “sport” that take the JCW appearance and apply it to any model. MINI USA is taking the stance that the JCW appearance should be exclusive to actual JCW models. That means the only way to get a JCW appearance is to buy a JCW model full stop. Similarly you cannot get a “Classic” or “Favoured” look on a JCW. Look for MINI to eventually add more options and color and trim choices to the range and production ramps up And we fully expect MINI to introduce new interior choices in the next model year as well. Now enough talk. Go and build your own! 2025 Configurator Homepage 2025 MINI Cooper S 2025 MINI Countryman S & JCW The post MINI USA Launches Configurator for the 2025 MINI Cooper & Countryman appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  12. After a long wait, I recently took delivery of the last customer order Clubman JCW to be delivered in the US. But as you all know buying a MINI is just the start of the journey. Making it your own is what you do for the life of the car. For me that started the day after I picked it up. And after a few weeks it’s finally ready for it’s official debut. The Suspension The first thing that had to be done was to drop the car. For this I turned to our longtime partner Outmotoring to consult on the right approach given our needs. The JCW factory ride height. MINI’s like most modern cars have a tendency to have fairly high suspension set-ups making the relationship between the tires and the body look a bit awkward. Further the tires and wheels are tucked into the body more than is necessary due to various government regulations around the world (looking at you Japan). While a coil-over set-up can be a great addition to a car (KW for instance), I wanted to keep the ride as stock as possible. Instead I went with the Eibach Pro Kit lower springs which are engineered to work perfectly with the stock shock absorbers while lowering the ride 1.2″ in the front and 1″ in the back. For one the cost dramatically lower which helps given that this is likely not the last suspension change I’ll be making on this car. Second the intent of this Clubman JCW is to be a daily driver and needs to have at least the same comfort as the stock suspension. Post modifications stance. Wrenching on your own car is so satisfying But if you care about there stance, lowering a car only gets you so far. You’ll also want to bring your tires and wheels out a bit so that they line-up flush with the body. For that I went with 12m spacers. As with everything I handled the install myself with MF contributor Ken Endres providing an extra pair of hands. The spring install was relatively straightforward but took some time. The spacers were as simple as taking wheels on and off. The results are visually stunning. But what’s really exciting is what it does to the handling. Bringing the wheels and tires outward has created a noticeable improvement initial turn-in and a sharpness to the handling that you don’t feel outside of a GP. Perhaps the best part is that there’s been no degradation in ride quality and even issues with scraping the front splitter on my driveway (which can happen on a stock F56 Cooper). The Big Pair from Cravespeed is almost too pretty to have under the car.Under-body Bracing OEM braces in the background, CravenSpeed’s in the foreground. Next up with increasing torsional rigidity. While MINIs are stiff, all you have to do is look under the car to see where improvements could be made. For this I turned to Cravespeed and their appropriately named Big Pair Chassis Brace. The Big Pair is a beautifully made, highly rigid replacement for the Clubman’s two chassis braces. What makes the Big Pair better? The OEM parts are mass produced stamped steel that are designed to meet a cost threshold and do just enough bracing. The CravenSpeed Big Pair was engineered from the ground up to be as strong as possible while still keeping weight to a minimum. Installation was straightforward and took about 30 minutes in total. The result is that you limit chassis flex and reduce the twisting motion that you feel when pushing the car in corners. The torsional loading of the chassis is reduced which in turn gives you better steering response, turn-in and even reduces understeer. This coupled with pushing the tires and wheel outward and dropping the car have noticeably improved responsiveness and even steering feel. It all makes you realize how compromised stock components on MINIs can be. The finish off the suspension and chasis modifications I installed the NM Engineering Rear Sway Bar from our patterns at Neuspeed. One of the best bangs for your buck you can get, a larger rear anti-sway car helps with body roll management creating a more balanced car at the limit. In many ways this will actually improve handling characteristics as good if not better than suspension modifications. The result is a car that’s more neutral and less prone to the understeer that’s found in all modern MINIs. Adams Graphene Ceramic Coating was a straightforward install with excellent results. Finally I added Adam’s Ceramic coating as a way to properly seal the car for daily driver duties. I had considered having it professionally done but I’ve always been curious about the process and decided to give it a go myself. As it turns out it’s time consuming (especially to properly prep) but not at all hard to do. And the results are absolutely stunning. It might not have the depth as the best carnauba waxes but its ability to protect for years (Adams claims 9 years but we hear half that) is unrivaled. If you’re handy at detailing, I’d highly recommend giving it a try. For those curious I had considered Xpel PPF which I previous done on another one of my cars but ultimately decided against it. This is likely an unpopular opinion but cost vs the MSRP of the Clubman JCW just doesn’t compute for me. It’ll be easy to regret later of course. A huge thanks are in order to our partners at Outmotoring, Cravenspeed and NM Engineering for their support on the first round of modifications. And an especially big shoutout to Aaron at Outmotoring for his guidance over the past months throughout the MINI aftermarket world. Finally if you’re brand is interested in us review your products shoot us a DM on Instagram or email us at info@motoringfile.com. We’re evaluating a second round of ideas as we speak. We’d also love to hear about your mods. What have you done to your MINI that you’ve loved? Let us know in the comments. Now it’s time to drive it. The post Our JCW Clubman Gets Dialed-in with Suspension and Chassis Modifications appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  13. Of all the fresh ideas we see on the new generation of MINI’s perhaps the most unique is the circular display that dominates the interior. Along with its operating system MINI OS9, it’s an a fresh take on all the rectangular screens and generic UI we see in most other new cars. But how does it work and is it actually good? Over the past 9 months we’ve had a chance to use the new display and MINI OS9 quite a bit. Our first time was in an early production prototype J01 MINI Cooper EV last June. The OS wasn’t finished but what we saw, even in those pre-beta days, was incredibly impressive. But it wasn’t until the U25 MINI Countryman JCW preview in November that we got a chance to dig into the OS and really use it. What you see above is our first full look at MINI OS9. We did everything from open apps, dive into system settings and even set-up Apple CarPlay. While this version was in early beta phase, we still found the system to be responsive and overall a delight to use. But it wasn’t until February of this year that we finally got behind the wheel of a MINI with the new Circular Display and MINI OS9. As you can imagine sitting and exploring the system is one thing. Using it while driving is a completely different equation. And it’s here where the Circular Display and MINI OS9 became more than just eye candy As you can see in these series of video, we tested a number of different features on the car in the real world and on real roads. What you’ll notice in all of these videos is how easy the experience is to use. This was the first time I had driven the car and the fact that I could so effortlessly unlock all of this functionality through MINI OS9 speaks to the intuitive nature of it all. The Circular Display and MINI OS9 will be standard on all new MINIs from the all-new 2024 Countryman, F66 ICE MINI Cooper, J01 Cooper EV and eventually the 2025 Aceman EV. The circular OLED screen is 9.5” (240 mm) wide however, because of the bottom cutout, measures about 9” in height. While it may seem like unusual design given the rectangles we’re all used to, it feels very natural in person thanks to the way MINI has organized the information. The “Charismatic Simplicity” design language (as MINI calls it) is focused on both minimalism and a bit of MINI character. The circular OLED display seamlessly accommodates both static and dynamic elements, with a clear and intuitive hierarchy (despite the shape). This is all made possible not just by talented strategists and designers but a very thoughtful technical approach leveraging Android. Yes you read that right. But it’s not the Android you all know. It’s actually the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) software stack which does several things for MINI. For one it allows MINI to leverage the massive scale of the Android App store of which MINI will create their own subset. But more importantly it allows MINI to leverage the army of Android engineers worldwide meaning that the platform MINI will rely on for future innovation is open and has a bright future. But don’t mistake the software stack as influencing the user experience. That’s 100% MINI’s own thinking and execution built on top of what is invisible but powerful technology. The Circular Display and MINI OS9 will be standard on all new MINIs. While functionality like Augmented Reality Navigation will be optional, most of what you see in the videos above is standard. The post Video: MINI’s Circular Display & OS9 Re-Imagines The Automotive Digital Experience appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  14. The MINI manual transmission is dead on the MINI Cooper. With the end of F56 production this February, the manual has left the MINI line-up for good. None of this is new if you’ve been reading MotoringFile but the reality for many is just setting. Why has MINI made this move? Here’s the full story. Why Is MINI Killing the Manual? MINI is killing the manual because of CO2 emissions and regulations in the European Union. Having spoken with plenty of MINI employees over the past year it’s clear to us that this was not a decision they wanted to make. On the face of it the F56’s Getrag six speed could have easily been carried over to the new F66 due to the almost identical drivetrain. But the realities of meeting the ever evolving emissions standards in the EU made that choice nearly impossible. The reason is the way that the EU tests for CO2 output. While manuals can theoretically be cleaner than an auto, it all depends on how they’re driven. The tests that the EU perform essentially highlight the fact that the manual has limitless variability in the way it can be operated. Where an automatic can be programmed to be completely in-sync with the engine and thus control CO2 output, the manual injects the fatal flaw of human control. That variable means that there could be a higher C02 output depending on how the car is driven. The way the EU executes its tests, these variables are amplified which means the manual (in the eyes of the EU) creates more C02 than a well engineered automatic. Even if, that might not be the case if operated properly. MINI could have said to hell with it but every brand has C02 targets to meet fleet wide and there’s simply not room for any extra C02 output within the ranks of the BMW Group. From Rolls Royce to BMW l, there are many cars with high output engines that produce a lot of C02. The MINI brand is essentially helping the entire group bring down its average by being economical. Cutting the manual furthers that in the eyes of the EU. What about markets like US, where CO2 targets don’t have the same impact? The idea that MINI could continue to offer the manual in the US and other markets is a tempting one. But the issue there is cost. Offering it one country means that the volumes go down dramatically which would raise the cost per unit. In doing so MINI would also lose a chance to simplify the production process just as it’s about to get more complex with new models. And that cost isn’t just about production but also support, parts and service for years to come. While the decision is a logical one, it’s also a risky move for MINI. By the second half of 2023 over 50% of F56 JCW hardtops in the US were equipped with the manual transmission. It’s also a huge part of the brand’s history and slots well into the MINI’s core philosophy of creating cars that are engaging the drive. It’s one of those core brand attributes that gave MINI credibility in the eyes of enthusiasts. The Replacement – The Getrag 7 Speed DCT Moving forward all internal combustion MINIs will be offered with two versions of the same 7 speed dual clutch transmission. The standard transmission will be called the Automatic DCT Transmission and will have shifting algorithm meant for everything from relaxed to mildly spirited driving. It will not come with steering wheel mounted paddles. The optional transmission is officially called the Sport Automatic DCT. It will have quicker shifts and will offer an even more aggressive algorithm in GoKart mode. It will also come standard with steering wheel mounted paddles. Gearbox ratio – 1st14.964Gearbox ratio – 2nd8.776Gearbox ratio – 3rd5.456Gearbox ratio – 4th3.785Gearbox ratio – 5th2.972Gearbox ratio – 6th2.345Gearbox ratio – 7th1.9Gearbox ratio – R13.441Gear ratios for the new F66 MINI Cooper SWe’ve already driven this new version of the DCT in the recent release U25 2025 MINI Countryman JCW. Our initial impressions were very positive. It’s a smoother transmission than the previous Aisin 8 speed but not necessarily quick shifting compared to other DCTs on the market. That said the manual controls (via the steering wheel mounted paddles) do work well and give you full manual control. That means in sport mode when you forget to shift, the car will not shift for you. The R53 Cooper S equipped with a manual and the JCW Tuning Kit.MotoringFile’s Take For us the manual transmission is a critical connection to a car that begs for involvement from the driver. Yes it’s old technology that has no logical place in a modern automobile. But there’s a reason that both Hyundai and Toyota and even BMW (if rumors are to believed) are working on manual transmissions for EVs. It creates engagement and connection with the car. It requires skill and practice that demand a driver treat the experience of driving with a respect that automatics or typical EVs don’t. And from that you get joy. The joy knowing that you and the car are in sync. And that you, the driver are solely responsible for engaging the right gear, in the right way, for the right moment. The post The MINI Cooper’s Manual Transmission is Dead Ending an Era appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article
  15. If you’ve been reading MotoringFile you’ll know from our exclusive reporting that the F66 2025 MINI Cooper S you’ll know almost all the details imaginable on the car. Almost that is with the exception some important facts – final US specifications and options. Oh and photos of the car actually in the US. Today we have all of those for you. The F66 2025 MINI Cooper is the brand’s new (and last) petrol powered Cooper full of new tech and more powerful engines all riding on a revised F56 chassis. So if it looks eerily familiar, it’s because deep down it’s based on the same MINI Cooper that’s been on sale since 2014. Yet this new Cooper packs technology and performance that moves the game on from the previous model. L2 autonomous driving, augmented reality navigation and more powerful engines are all welcome additions. Because of this MINI USA is raising prices. The previous F56 Cooper had an MSRP of $25,800. For the 2025 F66 Cooper that’s going up to $28,950. The 2025 F66 Cooper S rises from $30,900 to $32,200. MINI Manual Transmission Is Dead It’s as shocking as it feels inevitable. Shocking because of the manual’s continued popularity in markets like the US. Over 50% of F56 JCW hardtops for the 2024 m/y were equipped with the manual transmission for instance. It’s also a huge part of the brand’s history and slots well into the MINI’s core philosophy of creating cars that are engaging the drive. Why would MINI eliminate manuals despite the fact that the F66 (the replacement of for the F56) is mechanically identical and could easily carry over the current Getrag 6 speed? It’s likely about simplifying drivetrains components and cutting costs within manufacturing. And for Europe (where CO2 targets are much more stringent) the manual is slightly dirtier. In the manual’s place is a revised 7 speed dual clutch transmission that will be consistent across the range. Key Differences Between the new F66 MINI Cooper & its Predecessor The F56 It’s important know that the new F66 MINI Cooper is not a simple refresh of its F56 predecessor. It’s an entire rethink of the F56 that just happens to be on the same chassis. The changes are so through that In fact the only visible parts of the car that have been carried over are the doors, the roof and the glass. Changes in Size and Weight The F66 is a slightly bigger car in height and width while being shorter overall. Inside this give the new F66 a bit more rear luggage room along with slightly more interior room for passengers. Case in point front seat shoulder room is up from 50.6″ to 51.2″. In the back its up to 49.1″ from 47.8″. We’ve previously talked about these change in our first hands-on video review of the F66 but these numbers bear it out in data. ModelF56 CooperF56 Cooper SF66 Cooper CF66 Cooper SLength (in)152.8 in152.8 in152.6 in152.6 inHeight (in)55.66 in55.66 in56.4 in56.4 inWheelbase (in)98.23 in98.23 in98.23 in98.23 inCurb weight (lbs)2,769 lbs (US)2,842 lbs (US)N/A.3,014 lbs (US)F56 curb weight is taken from the US based cars equipped with an automatic. F66 curb weight are from EU figures as we wait for US specific data.One key piece of data we didn’t have until today is the final US specification weight figure of the Cooper S model. For the first time in stock form, the Cooper S weighs over 3,000 lbs with a total weight of 3,014 lbs. That’s 172 lbs heavier than the 2,842 lbs F56 Cooper S with the identical DCT. That weight is roughly equivalent to a full size 6″ human being riding shotgun with you all the time. Why the increase? MINI has added an enormous about of technology to the car (12 sensors powering a full autonomous driving system for instance) and new safety equipment that have added pounds. There’s also larger wheels and tires as standard along with more standard equipment in general. MINI USA tells us that if we were comparing a similarly equipped F56 to this new F66 the difference would be much closer. The F66 (top) is a dramatically simpler interior design that hides more advanced technology.The Interior of the F66 MINI Cooper While the exterior changes on the F66 may be surprising given its F56 origins, the interior is downright shocking. MINI has turned the F56 into a completely new car with all the design language, materials and technology found in the J01 MINI Cooper. The biggest change is the minimal design and large, circular display that dominates the experience. We’ve details that display, its operating system and its many functions on MotoringFile for months now. In fact you can see our full demo of the new system below. The new display and its software is a focal point for the entire driving experience housing almost all functionality save for a row of switches, buttons and toggles just below it. Stationary the new MINI OS9 interface had felt intuitive in our previous experiences. But in our time driving the new Countryman with an identical infotainment system we found a relatively learning curve before we felt fully acclimated with the new system. Within the first hour we had quickly become accustom to the new interaction language and overall placement of functionality. But is this better than MINI’s previous system? In our experience with the same system in the new Countryman, absolutely. The augmented navigation (part of the Comfort Package and Comfort Max Package) in particular was a standout. Watch our full MINI OS9 demo to get a better view of this radical new infotainment system. MINI’s First Vegan Interior When talking about there interior, the headline for many is that this new MINI is completely leather free. Why? There’s a big environmental impact due to the production of leather in the quantities that companies like MINI need. So much so that MINI has made the bold decision to eliminate leather entirely from its range. The results are surprisingly impressive. This isn’t chimney vinyl or even BMW’s leatherette from the E46. MINI calls it Vescin and it feels more premium than the mid-range leather MINI had previously offered and not far off from the premium Lounge Leather we’ve seen on MINIs for years. F66 2025 MINI Cooper S Performance ModelF56 CooperF56 Cooper SF66 Cooper CF66 Cooper SPower134 hp189 hp156 hp 201 hpTorque162 lb-ft/1480 rpm206 lb-ft/1350 rpm 170 lb-ft/1,480 rpm221 lb-ftTransmissionManual/DCTManual/DCT7 speed DCT7 speed DCTMINI has upped the ante in terms of power with both models. The F56 Cooper is getting a 14% power upgrade going from 134 hp to 156 hp in the F66 Cooper C. This change takes the C from 0-62 mph (0 to 100 km/h) in 7.7 seconds. The more powerful F66 Cooper S gets a less dramatic 7.4% horsepower boost from 189 to 204 hp but sees a significant torque increase to 221 lb-ft. This gets the new F66 Cooper S to 60 mph in 6.6 seconds (60 in 6.3 seconds). And keep in mind these are both likely a conservative numbers knowing how BMW calculates figures. The F66 2025 MINI Cooper S comes with a revised version of the B48 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine, generating an output of 201 horsepower and a maximum of 221 ft-lbs. of torque. That’s up from 189 hp and 206 ft lbs. This allows the Cooper S to go 0 to 60 MPH in 6.3 seconds with the sport automatic DCT – a slight .1 second increase from the previous, lighter model. One important note. Both the MINI Cooper S you see here and the forthcoming base MINI Cooper C will come to the US exclusively with four cylinder engines. The move means the cooper will share the same exact engine as the cooper s with the only difference being software. This could open the door for huge performance upgrade possibilities. The New MINI Family Launch Dates 1st Wave: U25 Countryman S, JCW & F66 Cooper S MINI is completely transforming its model range and the F66 2025 MINI Cooper S and the U25 Countryman S and JCW are the start. All three products have started production this month, with a vehicles arriving at dealers in May. Each dealer will receive several launch cars that will represent each model with the idea that they’ll be available for test drives and as a way to help potential buyers sort out models and options. 2nd Wave: U25 Countryman SE, F66 MINI Cooper & F65 Cooper S 4 Door The 2nd wave of this changeover will include the first new electric product to hit US shores. The electric Countryman SE (which we recently reviewed) will begin production in July with an official market launch happening early September. The F66 Cooper (with its uniquely US spec four cylinder engine) will finally begin production and make it to dealers in the same timeframe. Along side of it will be the introduction of another new model, the F65 Cooper S four door hatch. 3rd Wave: F67 Cooper Convertible, F65 Cooper 4 Door & F66 Cooper JCW The 3rd wave will round out the year with some of the most anticipated models. MINI will begin production of the Convertible in all models (the Cooper, Cooper S and JCW) in November with a market introduction in January of 2025. They will be joined by the Cooper four door and finally (the one we’ve been waiting for) the F66 Cooper JCW. To make this a bit more simple, here’s a handy guide to all new MINI products destined for the US and when we should see them. ModelCode NamePowerMYProd. MonthMarket LaunchMINI Countryman S All4U25Internal Combustion202503/2405/24MINI Countryman JCW All4U25Internal Combustion202503/2405/24MINI Cooper S 2-door hardtopF66Internal Combustion202503/2405/24MINI Cooper 2-door hardtopF66Internal Combustion202507/2409/24MINI Countryman SE All4U25Battery Electric202507/2409/24MINI Cooper S 4-door hardtopF65Internal Combustion202507/2409/24MINI Cooper 4-door hardtopF65Internal Combustion202511/2401/25MINI Cooper, Cooper S & JCW ConvertibleF67Internal Combustion202511/2401/25MINI JCW 2-door hardtopF66Internal Combustion202511/2401/25 The post The 2025 MINI Cooper S Debuts in the US: Increased tech, More Weight, Higher Price & No Manual appeared first on MotoringFile. View the full article