2011 MINI Countryman S ALL4 Review Car Reviews

17 Июн 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи 2011 MINI Countryman S ALL4 Review Car Reviews отключены
Mini Countryman Electric Cars

Yes you want to own it, but can you afford to?

FAST FACTS

1. Over a foot longer and with an extra 5-inches between the wheels, the Countryman has room for four plus some actual cargo space.

2. Base models get a 121-hp 4-cylinder, while the Cooper S gets a turbo and 181-hp.

3. The Countryman is the first MINI to feature all-wheel drive, which is only available on the top-level Cooper S model.

4. Pricing starts at $21,650 with Cooper S models at $25,250 and the Cooper S All4 at $26,950.

Scratch that, the Countryman is something you’ll definitely want to own, once you drive it – and only if you opt for the top Cooper S model with its turbocharged 4-banger. Being naturally larger than the traditional hardtop MINIs, the Countryman is heavier too and adds about 400-lbs. Using the same engine found in the hatchback Cooper S, that translates to straight-line acceleration that’s definitely fun, but will never wow you with power.

TURBOCHARGED COOPER S MODEL A MUST

Front drive models are a little quicker due to a curb weight that’s around 200 lbs lower, but the added weight is a small price to pay for extra traction, whether for poor weather driving, or finding some dirt roads to have some fun on. Called All4 the system defaults to front-wheel drive and only adds power to the rear when necessary. When slip is detected up to 50 percent of the engine’s torque is set to the rear wheels and in extreme circumstances all of the engine’s power will hit the back tires so you can drift the tail end – something that’s extremely fun on such a rigid package with the sort of tight steering that gives you confidence behind the wheel.

From a fun-to-drive perspective, apart from being a little down in the acceleration category, the Countryman is an absolute hoot. Fuel economy doesn’t suffer much either, and for a crossover, especially one that’s this much fun, it’s impressive. Our All4-equipped model with the turbo is rated at 24/31-mpg, which is almost the lowest you’ll get.

The down-on-power non-turbo Cooper model gets just 24/30-mpg with the auto-trans, a huge difference from the stick shift base model at 27/35-mpg.


Mini Countryman Electric Cars

FUN AND FUNCTIONAL

At a minimum there’s 12.2 cu-ft of cargo room, which is enough for groceries for a family of four. If you’re looking for more room in the back, the seats can push forward 5.1-inches for a total of 16.5 cu-ft, but then rear-seat room is compromised. Total cargo room is rated at 41.2 cu-ft with the rear seats folded flat.

Even without the seats folded there’s space between them to slide longer items through. Unfortunately this can also mean you really get to hear loose items sliding around back there.

Access to the rear is through a large liftgate that opens at the top. For such a small car it opens quite high and even gives enough clearance for those in the six-foot range to walk underneath. It opens by pulling on the MINI logo on the rear but in keeping with the rest of MINI’s backwards ergonomics the handles to close it are awkward to reach.

TYPICALLY FRUSTRATING MINI ERGONOMICS

Inside the ergonomics nightmare continues with MINI’s trademark toggle switches. The latest annoyance we’ve noted is that when you’ve got a travel mug in the cup holder it blocks access to most of the lower controls, including the window controls. But proof that all hope it not lost, the rear seat window controls are actually in a normal location and operate as they should.

Included in our test car is the new $1,000 MINI Connected system, and we’ve gotten comfortable enough with it to discover yet another poor example of ergonomics; the little chrome joystick is slippery to touch and should probably be coated in some sort of high-grip rubbery material.

Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars
Mini Countryman Electric Cars

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