The six-speed manual Cooper promises 32/40 City/Highway and a combined average of 35mpg. The slushbox version (which replaces the CVT from the previous model) is showing test cycle numbers of 30/37 City/Highway with the combined average at 33mpg. Adding a turbocharger doesn't hurt too bad either. The stick shift Cooper S will get 29/36 with a combined 32mpg and the automatic should deliver 27/34 mpg for an average of 30mpg. Those figures are about 4mpg better than the outgoing MINIs, model by model.
So you can settle for a boring econobox that offers a low entry fee but a high tax on your enthusiast soul in the daily commute, or splurge for a MINI and have ten times the fun with similar fuel economy. The choice seems obvious to us.
[Source: Just-Auto, sub. req]