Want a hot little hatchback? You could do a lot worse than a Mini. But as with many cars, your budget will determine how much speed you get: Cooper, Cooper S, JCW or – with the first-gen model, anyway – the top-of-the-line John Cooper Works GP.
Think there are a lot of Mini variants already? Hold on to your hats, because BMW is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon. Next month the new Mini Roadster will hit American showrooms, and next year, a two-door crossover (presaged by the Paceman concept from Detroit last year but carrying the Countryman Coupe in production form) should be available as well. But that's only the tip of the proverbial iceberg.
Imagine, for a moment, that you're on your way to a car dealership. For the sake of argument, let's say it's a Mini Cooper Coupe you've got your eye on. You arrive at the dealer, hand over your license and get in for a test drive. What's the absolute best thing that could happen?