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Mini Countryman vs Audi Q2 and Seat Ateca

Mini has boosted practicality in the latest version of the Countryman. So does it now mix function and looks better than its small SUV rivals from Audi and Seat?

Words ByWhat Car? team

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Audi Q2 back seats

What will they cost?

The Q2 is the priciest option for cash buyers, even after you’ve haggled a bit off the price, while the Countryman is cheapest by a small margin over the Ateca after discounts. After three years of depreciation, insurance, servicing and real-world fuel costs, it’s the Ateca that will cost least overall, by more than Β£2000 over the Q2 and Β£1200 over the Countyman.

However, most buyers will take out a finance agreement, at which point the Q2 is actually the cheapest option. Put down a Β£5000 deposit on a three-year personal contract purchase (PCP) deal and you’ll pay Β£247 a month thereafter. The Ateca comes in at Β£275 and the Countryman at Β£283, although it’s worth noting that the optional final β€˜balloon’ payment you’ll have to make if you want to own the car at the end of the agreement is much higher on the Q2 than the others.

If you’re a company car driver, you’ll have to sacrifice a very similar amount of your salary each month whichever car you choose, because they’re all in the same benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax band and have similar list prices.

However, that won’t be the case if you decide to spec the Q2 or Countryman up to the Ateca’s level. For example, the Ateca is the only car here with LED headlights and dual-zone climate control, although all three get air-con of some description, along with cruise control.

The Q2 is the only one that doesn’t have rear parking sensors as standard (they’re a Β£350 option). Meanwhile, Audi and Mini offer a much wider range of colours and styling personalisation options than Seat’s rather ordinary palette. All three cars get an immobiliser and alarm and equally competitive security ratings from Thatcham Research for guarding against being stolen and broken into.

Euro NCAP hadn’t tested the Countryman for safety at the time of writing, but the Q2 and Ateca got strong five-star overall scores. The Q2 is slightly better at protecting child occupants in a crash, while the Ateca is fractionally kinder to pedestrians. All three get automatic emergency braking as standard.

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