Compared to premium rivals, the Countryman’s purchase price is on a par with the likes of the Audi Q2, and undercuts the Mercedes GLA. It’s worth remembering that bigger mainstream rivals are the same price if not cheaper, though. Equipment levels are fairly generous, but we suspect most buyers will want to add a couple of thousand pounds of toys and personalisation options. You do at least get the option of Mini’s fixed price servicing (called TLC) and strong residual values.
Front-wheel drive Cooper petrols will be pretty frugal and are ideal if you’re not travelling too far every year. The diesels are the best bet if you’re planning on racking up the miles and the automatic gearboxes also improve economy and emissions. Four-wheel drive is optional, but we’d only recommend it if you find yourself dealing with mud and snow regularly. On road buyers are best to save their money and enjoy the lowing running costs of the two-wheel drive models.
Mini Countryman equipment
The old Countryman had a pretty poor level of standard equipment, something that has been rectified in this new model. All versions get alloy wheels, Bluetooth phone connectivity, cruise control, rear parking sensors and even sat-nav. Even so, there are plenty of tempting options with many buyers expected to select the Chilli pack. This is quite pricey, but does add LED headlights, keyless entry, climate control, a central armrest up front and a multifunction steering wheel.
The top of the range JCW could hardly be called good value, but you do get 8in wheels, a sporty bodykit, new LED headlights, and what is essentially MINI’s full Chilli Pack, as standard.
Mini Countryman reliability
The latest Countryman is far too new to appear in any reliability surveys, so we’ll have to look at the old car. While you’d hope a classy badge would mean dependability, the three worst performing small SUVs in our most recent customer satisfaction survey were from Audi, BMW and Mini. The Countryman fared nowhere near as badly as the Audi Q3 and BMW X1, but nonetheless it had a higher than average number of problems, and it finished well behind rivals such as the Kia Sportage and Skoda Yeti.
Mini Countryman safety & security
Euro NCAP are yet to get their hands on the Countryman so we can’t say how well it performs in a crash. As it’s a brand new car from a premium manufacturer, there’s a good chance it’ll get five stars. All models get an alarm, eight airbags, stability control, traction control, rear parking sensors and a tyre pressure monitor. Adaptive cruise control with emergency braking and traffic sign recognition are among the options.
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Entry-level Cooper models get alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, air-con, a DAB radio, colour infotainment screen and sat-nav. You might want to add a couple of options, but the basics are covered. An automatic gearbox and four-wheel drive are optional.
Cooper S E
S E models get yellow S badges and a charging port located in the front wing. When we know the other equipment you get, we’ll let you know.
Cooper S/Cooper SD
Sporty S models gain bigger alloy wheels, S bodystyling, sports seats and a sports steering wheel.
As the fastest Countryman available, you get even larger alloys and more aggressive styling.