The interior layout, fit and finish
In many respects, the interior is a standard Mini affair. That means plenty of retro charm throughout but, thankfully, without too much compromise in usability. The air conditioning controls are logical, for example, and the standard 8.8in colour infotainment system is easy to get used to. A DAB radio, Bluetooth connectivity and a USB socket are all standard, along with a multi-function steering wheel.
Sat-nav and Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring are an option you gain by adding the Navigation pack. It’s well worth having as it brings everything you really need to the Mini for a reasonable fee. The more feature-rich Navigation Plus pack includes wireless phone-charging and more online features but is too pricey to recommend. Visibility isn't bad, although the front windscreen pillars are a bit chunky and you'll need at least Sport trim to get rear parking sensors. Front sensors and a reversing camera are part of the optional Comfort Plus pack on all models, but at least bright LED headlights are standard.
All systems have an easy-to-use dial between the front seats – you twist it to scroll through the menus and press it down to make a selection, and it's less distracting to use than a touchscreen when you’re driving. Even so, the screen is touch-sensitive, which makes punching an address into the sat-nav when you’re stationary easier. With sharp graphics and responsive software, it’s the best infotainment system you’ll find in any small car.
There’s loads of adjustment in the seat and steering wheel, although shorter drivers might find that the seat doesn’t go quite far enough forwards to comfortably depress the clutch pedal fully. The pedals are offset slightly to the right, but not enough to be uncomfortable.
You get analogue dials for speed and revs as standard, replaced by a small digital display with the Navigation Plus pack. The display lacks the customisation options of the Virtual Cockpit in the Audi A1, though. If you add the Navigation Plus pack, you’ll get a clear heads-up display.
You won’t have any complaints about interior quality because, compared with the vast majority of small cars (even the Audi A1), the five-door Mini feels seriously premium inside. There are soft-touch materials in all the important places, while the buttons, switches and dials feel nicely damped. It looks great, too, with a cheerful design that’s made to feel special by touches that include extensive ambient lighting.
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