Cost & verdict

Mini 3dr review

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Mini 3dr
Review continues below...
5 Sep 2016 13:46 | Last updated: 21 Aug 2018 14:37

In this review

Cost & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Mini Hatchback hatchback running costs

The Mini is very competitively priced across the range, but it isn’t available with the sort of discounts you’ll get on rivals such as the Audi A1. It is a premium product and therefore priced as such, so it looks a bit more expensive when you compare it with more mainstream rivals such as the Volkswagen Polo and Seat Ibiza.

That said, the Mini can still make financial sense; few cars in this class hold their value as well (only the A1 manages that), while contract hire and company car tax bills are all extremely competitive, as are finance packages. We’d recommend paying a nominal one-off fee so you can have Mini’s TLC package, which covers routine servicing costs for three years or 36,000 miles.

Fuel economy on the Cooper D is outstanding, returning 62.6mpg in our real-world economy tests. The Cooper didn’t do so well, falling a long way short of its official figure to return 42.1mpg in normal use.

Mini Hatchback hatchback equipment

Even the cheapest Mini model, One, gets keyless start, 15in steel wheels, foglights, air-con and a 6.5in infotainment system with Bluetooth, a DAB radio and a USB port. The only real need to step up to Cooper is to get the extra performance, because the other upgrades are cosmetic tweaks such as body-coloured door mirrors and 15in alloy wheels.

Cooper S models, meanwhile, get 16in alloy wheels, different interior trims and an engine scoop in the bonnet, while the hot John Cooper Works model gets further sporty cosmetic alterations, sports suspension and the various drive modes as standard.

There are a lot of optional packs to choose from on all Mini models, but the pick of the bunch is the Pepper pack. It brings popular options such as rear parking sensors, dual-zone climate control, adaptive cruise control, a variable boot floor and auto lights and wipers. In addition, you get funky lights that illuminate to reflect changes to the air-con and can be set up in various colours and themes.

It’s a shame that sat-nav isn’t standard on any models and is a pricey extra, but it does also bring Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring. The bigger 8.8in infotainment display looks good and works well, but it’s an even more expensive option.

Mini 3dr

Mini Hatchback hatchback reliability

Mini finished a respectable 14th place out of 32 manufacturers in our latest reliability survey, with the hatchback model (both 3dr and 5dr) clocking a similar mid-table finish in the small car class, just behind the A1. It is a good idea, as we mentioned earlier, to add the TLC package that covers routine servicing costs for three years or 36,000 miles for a one-off fee.

Mini Hatchback hatchback safety and security

There’s lots of kit to help you avoid an accident, including stability control and tyre pressure monitoring, but you have to go to the options list for more advanced functions such as adaptive cruise control, automatic emergency braking and a rear-end collision-warning system.

The Mini performed reasonably in Euro NCAP’s crash tests, scoring four stars out of five (although the A1, Ibiza and Polo all have five-star ratings). It has six airbags to protect everyone on board. An alarm and immobiliser are fitted to all models.

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Verdict

The Mini 3dr is a hugely desirable small car that has plenty of substance to match its style; if you want a premium small car, it should be on your shortlist

  • Fun to drive
  • Low running costs
  • Strong resale values
  • Not as practical as rivals
  • Optional extras can be pricey
  • Ride is a bit firm
There are 11 trims available for the Hatchback hatchback. Click to see details.See all versions
One
Generously specced with a 6.5in colour infotainment system, Bluetooth, a DAB radio, USB socket, air-con, 15in steel wheels and LED front and rear headlights as standard. However, you have to pay ex...View trim
Fuel Petrol
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£14,882
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One Classic
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£15,147
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OUR PICK
Cooper
Above One trim, it gets cosmetic tweaks such as body-coloured door mirrors and 15in alloy wheels. It is available with the sole 1.5-litre diesel engine or our pick of the range, the more powerful 1...View trim
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£16,225
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Cooper Classic
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£16,490
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Cooper Sport
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£18,915
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Cooper Exclusive
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One Classic
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£19,288
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Cooper S
Bigger 16in alloy wheels, different interior trims and an engine scoop in the bonnet are among the upgrades for Cooper S, which comes with the lower-powered of the two 2.0-litre petrol engines...View trim
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£19,295
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Cooper S Classic
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Cooper S Sport
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£21,193
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Cooper S Exclusive
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