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I went car shopping on a rainy Sunday afternoon and came home w/ a Cooper S. It's a second car for us so I wanted something fun and easy to drive in the city. I'd been looking at used cars, Miata's mostly, but my wife and I are both 6' tall and the Miata was a bit too extreme. The Mini has a perfect amount of space and comfort for us. Plus the flexibility of back seats and a useful hatchback cargo area. I drove some used Coopers but used car prices are still stupid so I decided to just check out what the dealer could offer. I expected to put my name on a list and wait, but they actually had practically exactly what I wanted (and they only had two Cooper S two-door's in stock) and they offered me a great deal (last Sunday of the month and I was the only person in the dealership) so I pulled the trigger. Only eighteen miles on it when I test drove it! I think that's the newest new car I've ever bought and I don't think anyone else had even test drove it.

It's all about inventory right? I don't think the Honda dealer would have sold me a Civic Touring or Si for what I paid for the Cooper S (or even a COVID priced GTI S at the VW dealer) even if they had 'em in stock (they don't). BTW, the Acura side of the dealership had several new Integras in stock. Apparently they aren't selling very well.

I couldn't be happier! I'm coming from a 228i that was preceded by a 500 Abarth and a Nissan cube before that. The Mini feels practically as fast and competent as the 228i, more fun to drive than the Abarth, and even more comfortable than the cushy cube. I had already decided to go w/ the 7spd auto since the paddles and manual mode still let me play and my wife is much more comfortable driving the auto. I think the auto is very well matched to the 2L turbo. The tech is great and familiar to a former BMW owner and the interior quality is quite good. I'm glad Mini kept the iDrive interface for the touchscreen because I love to use that for zooming/unzooming the map when exploring new roads.

The car came w/ the obligatory Signature package (moonroof, heated seats, etc.) which makes it well equipped. I also ended up w/ some sort of "Included Content 2" package for $1k w/ some comfort and convenience features that I appreciate. I think Mini is just building these '23s as best they can and making up content packages after the fact! I also ended up w/ a fat, soft, heated Nappa leather steering wheel (best wheel EVER), piano black trim, and Union Jack side scuttles that I think are kind of fun. I'm not in love w/ the 17" scissors wheels but I don't hate 'em. The Hankook(?!) tires are still slippery and it's been raining since I bought the car, but at least they are all season tires. We'll take it for a long spin this weekend and hopefully I can get it broken in a bit. Some window tint and all weather floormats for winter and I should be good to go!

And yes, that is my beater '09 Odyssey minivan in the picture. I need to unload it but I'll post that in the Classifieds section.

I'm looking forward to participating in the forum!
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