Passenger & boot space
How it copes with people and clutter
The Mini Countryman is large by small SUV standards and makes good use of every inch. Its high roof and generous seat runners allow even the tallest of drivers enough head and leg room, and it's relatively wide between the doors, so you shouldn’t be rubbing elbows with your passenger, either.
As well as the two cupholders in front of the gear lever, there's a decent glovebox, a couple of small cubbies for loose items and reasonably large door bins. The optional Comfort Pack includes a front armrest with extra storage underneath.
The Countryman is one of the bigger small SUVs in the rear, too, although not quite class leading. That honour falls to the Skoda Kamiq, which has a few centimetres more leg room, but the Countryman still has enough leg room to ably fit two tall adults in the back, behind a couple of similarly sized folks in the front.
Head room is extremely generous, but be warned: the PHEV has a bit less because the seat is raised to accommodate the battery pack beneath. Even then, head room is still fine unless you're really long in the body, which holds true if you're the fifth person sandwiched in the middle rear seat. The middle passenger has a much lower hump in the floor to sit astride compared with a lot of the Countryman's rivals, including the Kamiq and Volkswagen T-Roc.
Seat folding and flexibility
The Mini Countryman’s rear bench splits in a handy 40/20/40 configuration, which is more useful than the 60/40 split in most of its rivals because it’s easier to carry long, narrow items, such as skis and snowboards, with two rear passengers on board. Folding down the rear seatbacks is simple, but they don't lie completely flat.
If you add the Activity Pack the Countryman is one of the few cars in the class to offer both sliding and reclining rear seats – the Volkswagen T-Cross, for example, has just sliding rear seats. The PHEV doesn't have the sliding feature, though.
The front passenger seat height and lumbar adjustments are optional, as is an electrically operated seat.
The Countryman's boot isn't quite a match for the carrying capacity of the Ford Puma's but it's pretty similar to cars’ like the Kamiq and T-Cross. Its fairly low load height helps when loading heavy items in or out, and if you raise the variable-height floor, the floor sits flush with the bottom edge of the tailgate opening.
The PHEV loses some capacity over the regular Countrymans, but the boot is still big enough to be useful and there's enough under-floor storage left for the car's charging cables.
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