2007 MINI Cooper

MSRP ?

$18,050 - $21,950
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Engine Engine 1.6LI-4
MPG MPG 32 City / 40 Hwy
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2007 Cooper Overview

Click the image above for more high-res images. MINI was kind enough to furnish a fully-stocked iPod in our 2007 Cooper S tester, and after a few days of enduring OPPs (other-people's-playlists), we swapped in our own to catch up on podcasts and to sample the Beastie Boys' second installment of instrumental stylings. We know our place in the world, so we're not going to pretend to be music critics, but after flogging the MCS over the course of a week, blaring The Mix-Up through the dual-zone moon roof, we found ourselves comparing both the old and new cars with the old and new albums. The verdict: both are superior in their own way, and only nostalgia tips the previous iteration into favor. %Gallery-8752% All photos Copyright ©2007 Damon Lavrinc / Weblogs, Inc. While lazier reviewers disregard the MINI's new sheetmetal, any gearhead worth their cred will instantly recognize the R56 whether stationary or at speed. The new front end dispatches the former model's Brit Bulldog fascia in favor of a more sophisticated -- albeit chunkier -- appearance, while the northward-bound beltline gives the new-new MINI a more planted persona. The turn signals have found a home within the headlamps and although the hood scoop is no longer functional, MINI was smart enough to keep it blocked off so airflow wouldn't be disrupted when feeding the intercooler. As a whole, it's certainly not a coup in the styling department, but it's subtle in the same way the new-for-'05 Porsche Boxster was; one of our favorite mid-cycle refreshes to date. While the outside remains understated-retro-chic, the inside is a totally different game – basketball to be exact. Our Cooper's interior was swathed in "Leather Lounge Redwood" ($1,900) and although it was trying hard to look like BMW's delectable "Coral Red" it came across more like a rock from Spalding rather than an enclave for serious-minded motorists. The leather hue however, was the least of our gripes. MINI saw fit to increase the size of its central-mounted speedo to accommodate the integrated sat-nav and stereo controls. While our tester didn't benefit from GPS-guided assistance, the gaping sore in the middle of the dash proved to be the definitive design foible. "Large" is an understatement, and although we understand the nod to Coopers of yore, it proved entirely useless since the steering-column mounted tach gives you the option to display your current speed in a multi-function LCD. On the upside, the Cooper's switchgear is considerably funkier than its predecessor, with a number of stalks to control everything from the windows to the rear fog lamps; the latter foretelling a trend that we hope catches on. While fit and finish is par for the BMW course, our only gripe with the materials was the water bottle-grade plastic used for the automated air-con controls and CD slot surround. The Premium Package Cooper S benefits from a host of buttons on the steering wheel that allows manipulation of the cruise control and stereo inputs, and also …
Full Review

2007 Cooper Overview

Click the image above for more high-res images. MINI was kind enough to furnish a fully-stocked iPod in our 2007 Cooper S tester, and after a few days of enduring OPPs (other-people's-playlists), we swapped in our own to catch up on podcasts and to sample the Beastie Boys' second installment of instrumental stylings. We know our place in the world, so we're not going to pretend to be music critics, but after flogging the MCS over the course of a week, blaring The Mix-Up through the dual-zone moon roof, we found ourselves comparing both the old and new cars with the old and new albums. The verdict: both are superior in their own way, and only nostalgia tips the previous iteration into favor. %Gallery-8752% All photos Copyright ©2007 Damon Lavrinc / Weblogs, Inc. While lazier reviewers disregard the MINI's new sheetmetal, any gearhead worth their cred will instantly recognize the R56 whether stationary or at speed. The new front end dispatches the former model's Brit Bulldog fascia in favor of a more sophisticated -- albeit chunkier -- appearance, while the northward-bound beltline gives the new-new MINI a more planted persona. The turn signals have found a home within the headlamps and although the hood scoop is no longer functional, MINI was smart enough to keep it blocked off so airflow wouldn't be disrupted when feeding the intercooler. As a whole, it's certainly not a coup in the styling department, but it's subtle in the same way the new-for-'05 Porsche Boxster was; one of our favorite mid-cycle refreshes to date. While the outside remains understated-retro-chic, the inside is a totally different game – basketball to be exact. Our Cooper's interior was swathed in "Leather Lounge Redwood" ($1,900) and although it was trying hard to look like BMW's delectable "Coral Red" it came across more like a rock from Spalding rather than an enclave for serious-minded motorists. The leather hue however, was the least of our gripes. MINI saw fit to increase the size of its central-mounted speedo to accommodate the integrated sat-nav and stereo controls. While our tester didn't benefit from GPS-guided assistance, the gaping sore in the middle of the dash proved to be the definitive design foible. "Large" is an understatement, and although we understand the nod to Coopers of yore, it proved entirely useless since the steering-column mounted tach gives you the option to display your current speed in a multi-function LCD. On the upside, the Cooper's switchgear is considerably funkier than its predecessor, with a number of stalks to control everything from the windows to the rear fog lamps; the latter foretelling a trend that we hope catches on. While fit and finish is par for the BMW course, our only gripe with the materials was the water bottle-grade plastic used for the automated air-con controls and CD slot surround. The Premium Package Cooper S benefits from a host of buttons on the steering wheel that allows manipulation of the cruise control and stereo inputs, and also …Hide Full Review