Posts from ‘Mini’

2018 Toyota C-HR

2018 Toyota C-HR: Proving that small crossovers are a big draw.

2016 LA Auto Show LogoPerhaps because it’s the first major auto show of the season (and perhaps because it’s set, of course, in California – the tail that wags the fashion dog), the Los Angeles Auto Show often establishes trends later followed at the other major shows.

2017 Mini Countryman S E ALL4

2017 Mini Countryman Cooper S E ALL4

LA Auto ShowLOS ANGELES—Mini introduced an all-new second generation of its Countryman subcompact SUV at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show. The 2017 Mini Countryman will be offered in the expected Cooper and Cooper S trim levels, and also a new Cooper S E ALL4 model—Mini’s first-ever plug-in hybrid. 

2016 Mini Cooper S Convertible

2016 Mini Cooper S Convertible in extra-cost Melting Silver Metallic

2015 Audi Q52016 Mini Cooper S Convertible 

Class: Sporty/Performance Car

Miles Driven: 265

Fuel Used: 11.8 gallons

2016 Mini Cooper S Clubman

2016 Mini Cooper S Clubman

2015 Audi Q52016 Mini Cooper S Clubman

Class: Sporty/Performance Car

Dates tested: 2/01/2016 – 2/08/2016

Miles Driven: 351

Fuel Used: 14.6 gallons

2015 Mini 4-Door

Consumer Guide’s test Mini Cooper S Hardtop 4-Door arrived loaded with optional equipment. Including the destination charge, our test car came to $35,900.

2015 Mini Cooper S Hardtop 4-Door 2015 Audi Q5


Class: Sporty/Performance Car

Dates tested: 4/06/2015 – 4/13/2015

Miles Driven: 151

Fuel Used: 6.4 gallons

Screen shot 2014-07-09 at 4.35.33 PM

Consumer Guide’s test Mini Cooper S Hardtop came to $36,895 including automatic transmission and destination charge.

2014 Mini Cooper S Hardtop Automatic 

Miles Driven: 210

Fuel Used: 7.8 gallons

Real-world fuel economy: 26.9 mpg


Fiat 500

There are a lot of great cars on the market today. They go about the business of transporting people with surprising performance, impressive fuel economy, and historically high levels of refinement and creature comforts. But for the most part, you could wring every drop of personality out of them and there wouldn’t be enough to coat the bottom of the ashtray that the Fiat 500 doesn’t have.

Certainly any number of high-end sports and luxury cars have personality (some might say a snobbish one), but what we’re talking about here are cars could substitute for what the majority of people would otherwise buy.

Fiat 500
Although the 500’s price of entry is now up to a little less than $17,000 including destination, that’s for a nicely outfitted car and not much more than you’d pay for a similarly equipped subcompact—that’s not nearly as endearing. The automatic transmission will add a stiff $1,250, but if you’re on the fence, the slick-shifting manual is the better choice. Also offered is a convertible version (it’s really more of a very large sunroof) that starts just over $20,000. Sure it’s small, but the 500 is great fun to drive and delivers most of the positive attributes of a typical subcompact competitor.


Mini John Cooper Works Paceman

At the 2013 Detroit Auto Show, Mini pulled the wraps off the high-performance John Cooper Works-branded version of its recently debuted Paceman crossover vehicle.

The Paceman is, essentially, a 2-door version of the company’s Countryman 4-door crossover. Compared with the rest of the Mini product line, the Paceman has a raised suspension, all-wheel drive, and a larger interior. The JCW treatment adds more power, a sport suspension, sport exhaust, aerodynamic body addenda, and 18-inch wheels (19s are optional). Inside, modifications and substitutions include a sport-inspired steering wheel, dark-colored instruments, JCW door-sill plates, piano-black strips on the dashboard, and red stitching on the seats, shifter, and steering wheel. The standard Paceman’s seats have been replaced with four individual sport seats. Also included is a Sport button that changes engine performance and sound and reduces the amount of steering power assist for a more direct steering feel. It also quickens the automatic transmission’s shifts.

This hopped-up version is powered by a 208-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine. A 6-speed manual transmission is standard, and an automatic with manual-shift capability via the floor shifter or steering-wheel mounted paddle shifters is optional. With either transmission, Mini says the JCW Paceman will do the 0-60 mph dash in 6.5 seconds on its way to a top speed of 127 mph. The Paceman also employs electric power steering.


2013 Mini Paceman

The 2013 Mini Paceman made its North American debut at the 2012 LA Auto Show. Though seen in concept form at several previous auto shows, the Paceman on display in Los Angeles is a production-ready model.

This compact SUV is basically a 2-door version of the Mini Countryman. Both vehicles share the same basic design, features, powertrains, and 4-passenger seating.

Like most Minis, Paceman comes in Base and high-output S versions. Both come standard with front-wheel drive while the S is available with the brand’s ALL4 all-wheel drive. Base models use a 121-horsepower 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine. The S has a 1.6-liter engine as well, but it’s turbocharged and produces 181 horsepower. Buyers can choose between a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic transmission, even on AWD models.

The long list of options includes items such as a navigation system, keyless access/engine start, adaptive xenon headlights, rear-obstacle detection, and Mini’s Connected infotainment system. Connected allows Apple iPhone owners to stream audio, view Facebook and Twitter posts, and analyze driving behavior.

The 2013 Mini Paceman goes on sale March 16, 2013, with a starting price of $23,900.


The Volkswagen Tiguan is Consumer Guide’s top-rated 2013 compact SUV.

Each year, Consumer Guide Automotive editors test drive and evaluate nearly every vehicle sold in the United States. Together, the editors rate each vehicle 1–10 in the following categories: Acceleration, Fuel Economy, Ride Quality, Steering/Handling/Braking, Quietness, Controls, Details, Room/Comfort/Driver Seating (front), Room/Comfort (rear), Cargo Room, and Value Within Class.

The editors add those numbers to produce a total CG Rating score for each vehicle. Below are the total rating scores for all 2013 compact SUVs (excluding luxury vehicles). Click the name of the SUV for a detailed review of that vehicle.

Note that the Consumer Guide Automotive Best Buy Awards are not entirely based on the CG Rating scores. A vehicle may be rated a few notches lower than No. 1, but if its pricing is attractive, it could be dubbed a Best Buy. Also, Best Buy selections are based on personal, informed judgments, not just rating numbers.

1) Volkswagen Tiguan
Base MSRP: $22,995; Consumer Guide Rating: 77
Tiguan’s prices are higher than most compact sport-utility competitors, with loaded versions crossing into premium-compact-SUV territory. However, sporty-for-the-class road manners, a comfortable interior, and three years of no-cost scheduled maintenance help offset the difference.

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