Mini Cooper Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi

The lease plan on my Audi A1 1.4 TFSI Ambition is expiring this month so I have been test driving a few similar sized vehicles in other brands. My first test drive in a Mini Cooper 1.5 was somewhat surprising in the sense of "this is WAY different than what I'm used to". The steering, the engine response and sound and the cabin were nothing like my Audi. Even though the Mini on paper is 1 sec quicker 0-100 km/h than my Audi, it still felt kind of sluggish and not very agile. Other than that I really like what the Mini offers in terms of build quality, appearance, specs, personality and price tag.

I'm interested in other people's experiences of test driving the Mini when being used to driving more conservative and comfy cars like Mercedes, Audi, VW and BMW. I'm thinking that my 30 minutes experience in the Mini didn't instantly make me fall in love with the car because I'm used to driving a more conventional car which is fairly easy to drive. However, I love having fun driving my car, and I'm very intrigued by all the positive comments in this forum about the Mini's ability to add a dash of excitement to your driving. That is exactly what I'm looking for. Something fun and out of the ordinary in all aspects.

Tomorrow I will give the Mini a second chance and put down an order if I feel convinced and comfortable with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
890 Posts
My 1.5 Cooper, which I have had for over 2 years can be very well behaved and docile if you want it to be, but if you want to scare yourself or your other half then it is very capable of doing that too.

Try putting it into sport mode if the demo car has it, and although it doesn't increase the power it makes the throttle response more eager and responsive.

I have just ordered another Cooper, hoping they have not detuned them in the last couple of years!

I have had quite a few courtesy cars of various types recently and none of them come close to the Mini. I can't wait to get it back every time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
320 Posts
Firstly, I've had years of BM's and Audi's, including some reasonably high spec ones and my wife until recently actually had an A1 - the diesel though, and we recently ditched all that and went to a Mini Hatch (ok, a JCW not a Cooper) and a Fiat 500X.

I think you hit the nail on the head when you said your used to driving more conservative and comfy cars...... I have to say, 4 months in, yes, the Mini is a lot harder to drive than anything I've had for many years, but Audi's are point and shoot machines from my experience, they just do what they do, very well, very efficiently and its all very easy, very effortless (but uninvolving?) from a drivers perspective.

I find I just have to actually 'drive' my Mini', which means effort, which is something that I'm not used to after Audi!!!! And I did, in the first few days think, oh, hmmmm, what have I done, as I find the gearbox is frankly hard work when its cold, but wickedly notchy and precise when warmed up, the steering is bl**dy hard work when pottering around but once going half sideways around a roundabout, or on some decent b-road twisties, its an absolute joy and makes me smile like nothing else since my old Elise 20 years ago.

I'd never have the confidence to drive an Audi the way I do my Mini, but it takes a bit of effort and the rewards are there, trust me - you've just got to give it the beans!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
My advice - buy the 2.0 cooper S
The 1.5 is awesome and fun ( i have one )
But the 2.0 is just perfect and will be a good improvement from the audi a1
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,861 Posts
Welcome to the Forum. I have the 1.5 for the last 18 month. Most trouble free car I owned so far. My Dealer gives outstanding customer service. I would take the 1.5 and the MCS for a long test drive by yourself (if you can) and give it the every driving test so see which car fit,s your needs better.:) Good Luck and keep us posted.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks, guys. Your comments made me change my mindset on how I perceive the MINI.

Just got back from the dealer. This test drive felt much better than the first one. Perhaps because I was ready to literally DRIVE the car instead of expecting it to drive me around town without much effort. I didn't constantly compare the car to my Audi which made me focus on my honest believe whether this car could be MY car and really enjoy it no matter if I was driving or just admiring it from a distance (which I like doing with my cars). Also, I took my time ajusting the seat and steering wheel before I headed out :)

In my country the Cooper S is €12800 more expensive than the Cooper and that is way out of my league :( I'd rather spend half of that money on optional equipment like steptronic, visual boost, bluetooth, PDC etc.

The dealer told me that Driving Modes make no sense in a regular Cooper, so he recommended me to spend the money on something else that gives better value to the Cooper.

To conclude I'm pretty sure to put down an order this coming week :)
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,217 Posts
Mmm driving modes make as much sense in the cooper as any other mini.weird comment but i could live without it. If i had to.! Theres a mssive difference between the three modes in terms of feel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,837 Posts
As you're new to the forum you won't know my story regarding the previous F56 Cooper D I owned, however long story short I rejected that car as it kept breaking... Petty little things but was holy annoying!

Anyway, after MINI FS had decided they would take it back I went to test drive the Audi A1 Facelift (1.4TFSI and 1.6 TDI)... Immediately felt like I'd lost all quirky character and cool factor. The Audi's steering was numb and lifeless and changing gear was just boring, it didn't entice me to drive it fast or show its playful side.

I did own an A1 S-Line 1.2 TFSI when the original was launched which I loved as it was my first car, although after having three MINI's since then... I don't think I could go back to an A1. The power just isn't there in the engine options and well I don't think Drive Select is as effective as the MINI Excitement Package.

I'd be lost without my Sport mode, the steering just isn't heavy enough without it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
17 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Anyway, after MINI FS had decided they would take it back I went to test drive the Audi A1 Facelift (1.4TFSI and 1.6 TDI)... Immediately felt like I'd lost all quirky character and cool factor. The Audi's steering was numb and lifeless and changing gear was just boring, it didn't entice me to drive it fast or show its playful side.

I did own an A1 S-Line 1.2 TFSI when the original was launched which I loved as it was my first car, although after having three MINI's since then... I don't think I could go back to an A1. The power just isn't there in the engine options and well I don't think Drive Select is as effective as the MINI Excitement Package.

I'd be lost without my Sport mode, the steering just isn't heavy enough without it.
Great to hear your story about going from MINI and back to test driving the A1 :) Well, Audi and BMW will always amaze me with their high-end models as well as their hefty price tags! But even though I have only spend an hour in a MINI, I can totally understand why some people dig them. It's more than just means of transportation. It's a car you personally can relate to in terms of appearance and performance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
890 Posts
I can't really think the dealer is right about the driving modes being a waste of time in a Cooper.

I tend to use the "normal" mode because the economy is good enough without needing to use the "green" mode, and the "sport" mode makes the car feel very frisky and around town I find I am going far too fast, too quickly, too often.
On the open road it is a different matter though and that is when "sport" mode makes a difference especially on non motorway type roads. It is clever how they have made the engine feel more powerful but all that is changed is the response of the ecu to throttle input, and the steering weight, of course.

It is nice to have the option to change the character of the car at a flick of a switch.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
8,217 Posts
Johnan is right,the three modes are hugely different. Ignore the dealer try them if you can afford them!


Good brief crazy price pop over the border and buy one elsewhere! Uk Cooper starts at £15,000 !
 
  • Like
Reactions: tennisbold
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top