Mini Countryman review

Category: Small SUV

Section: Performance & drive

Mini Countryman 2021 rear tracking
  • Mini Countryman 2021 front cornering
  • Mini Countryman 2021 rear tracking
  • Mini Countryman 2021 LHD dashboard
  • Mini Countryman 2021 front seats
  • Mini Countryman JCW 2020 front seats RHD
  • Mini Countryman 2021 infotainment
  • Mini Countryman 2021 wide tracking
  • Mini Countryman 2021 front static
  • Mini Countryman 2021 rear static
  • Mini Countryman 2021 front cornering
  • Mini Countryman 2021 rear tracking
  • Mini Countryman 2021 LHD dashboard
  • Mini Countryman 2021 front seats
  • Mini Countryman JCW 2020 front seats RHD
  • Mini Countryman 2021 infotainment
  • Mini Countryman 2021 wide tracking
  • Mini Countryman 2021 front static
  • Mini Countryman 2021 rear static
What Car?’s Countryman deals
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Target Price from £28,815
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In this section:
  • Engine, 0-60mph and gearbox
  • Suspension and ride comfort
  • Handling
  • Noise and vibration

Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

Engine, 0-60mph and gearbox

We reckon the 134bhp 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol in the Cooper is the pick. It keeps the price sensible and offers about the same performance as a Ford Puma 1.0 Ecoboost Hybrid 125, with 0-62mph dispatched in a creditable 9.7sec. In the real world that means enough oomph on tap for town or fast A-road driving.

The plug-in hybrid (PHEV) model adds an electric motor (driving the rear wheels) to the Cooper’s petrol engine, making it four-wheel drive. It also boosts power to 217bhp, so the PHEV's 0-62mph time of just 6.8sec is second only to the hot JCW performance model. More pertinently, perhaps, the PHEV can run on electric motor alone for up to 30 miles – although 20 miles is more likely in real-world driving. Obviously, acceleration isn't as quick without the petrol engine helping out, but performance is still adequate for most situations and you can even cruise at 70mph for short distances.

Suspension and ride comfort

The Countryman has fairly firm suspension and is far from the most comfortable small SUV. It clumps over potholes, bucks about on undulating B-roads, and only stops fidgeting on motorways if they're ironed smooth like a sergeant’s shirt. 

If you go for optional bigger wheels or run-flat tyres then things get worse still, and the Countryman PHEV's extra weight – due to its battery pack – also exacerbates matters. 

Adaptive suspension is a reasonably priced option on certain versions and worth considering, but even this doesn't make the ride anywhere near as cosseting as the Skoda Kamiq and Volkswagen T-Roc.

Mini Countryman 2021 rear tracking

Handling

New car deals
Target Price from £28,815
Swipe to see used and leasing deals
Nearly new deals
From £29,850