While the new MINI is already bombing around Europe and the U.S. in standard and Cooper S trim, Europeans have had to wait for new versions of their popular MINI One and MINI Cooper D. MINI has announced both models will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March, each with their own upgrades. Aside from the new sheetmetal, the MINI One will feature a smaller version of the new MINI motor developed in conjunction with PSA. The 1.4-liter four-cylinder produces 95-hp at 6,000 rpm and 103 ft-lbs. of torque at 4,000 rpm, aided by a version of BMW's variable valve timing technology called VALVETRONIC. The MINI One will return a fairly frugal 49.6 mpg (miles per imperial gallon, mind you) in Britain's combined urban and extra-urban cycles.
The MINI Cooper D, however, is the car for which we here at Autoblog pine. The D, of course, stands for diesel, and the new model will use a 1.6-liter turbodiesel that producs 110 hp at 4,000 rpm and between 177 and 191 ft-lbs. of torque at a low 2,000 rpm. It'll hit 62 mph in under 10 seconds, and reward a light foot with 64.2 mpg (again, imperial gallons) in Britain's cycle. Both cars come standard with six-speed manual transmissions, or one can opt for a six-speed auto with paddle shifters and a sport mode. Starting April, about a month after each car debuts in Geneva, Brits will be able to buy the MINI One beginning at £11,595 ($22,740 USD) and the MINI Cooper D starting at £14,190 ($27,829 USD).
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The new MINI One and MINI Cooper D
Brand new MINI range boosted by introduction of the frugal, but fun MINI One and first ever MINI Cooper D
The new MINI hatch line-up will soon be complete, when the new MINI One and MINI Cooper D models are unveiled to the public at the International Geneva Motor Show on 8 March 2007. The entry-level One features a perky 95hp 1.4-litre petrol engine, while the Cooper D boasts performance and fuel efficiency from an all-new 1.6-litre 110hp turbodiesel powerplant.
A Cooper-badged MINI diesel hints at the sporty nature of the new model. MINI fans will be equally excited at the prospect of the Cooper D promising to be the most fuel-efficient and cleanest MINI ever built. In comparison to the outgoing MINI One D's combined fuel consumption of 58.9mpg, the Cooper D is capable of 64.2mpg. A CO2 figure of just 118 g/km puts the car in tax band B.
MINI One also benefits from a significant improvement in both fuel consumption and emissions over the outgoing model. 49.6mpg is achievable from the One's new 1.4-litre unit, compared to 41.5mpg from its predecessor. CO2 emissions are now 138g/km, against 164g/km produced by the previous model.
The MINI One will cost £11,595 on the road, and the MINI Cooper D will be £14,190. Both models will be on sale from April 2007.
Both models feature the new body shape already seen on the recently launched MINI Cooper and Cooper S models. Interior quality enhancements and unique design features remain key characteristics of the One and Cooper D. However, several individual highlights set the cars apart.
MINI One: Technology highlights
The 1.4-litre four-cylinder engine in the MINI One is derived from the 1.6-litre unit that features in the current Cooper model. Smooth power delivery and maximum efficiency are achieved using fully variable valve control, through a system based on BMW Group's unique VALVETRONIC technology.
Maximum output of 95hp at 6,000rpm is produced by the compact engine, which is constructed from lightweight aluminium. The 5hp power increase on its predecessor leads to a peak torque figure of 140Nm at 4,000rpm.
The innovative powertrain is key to the MINI One's ability to ensure a grin-inducing driving experience, yet offers the driver outstanding fuel economy and low emissions. A 0-62mph time of 10.9 seconds and top speed of 115mph are complemented by an average fuel consumption figure of 49.6mpg – an efficiency increase of 15 per cent compared to the outgoing model.
MINI Cooper D: Technology highlights
The MINI Cooper D's brand new turbocharged diesel engine develops 110hp at 4,000rpm. Under normal conditions peak torque of 240Nm is achieved between 1,750 and 2,000rpm. Deploying the engine's Overboost function gives the Cooper D an additional 20Nm of torque, meaning the driver will experience 260Nm at 2,000rpm. MINI enthusiasts will recognise this torque figure is identical to that produced by the new MINI Cooper S.
The turbocharger system features variable turbine geometry, ensuring optimum smoothness, efficiency and response even at low engine speeds.
Second-generation common rail diesel technology operating at a maximum pressure of 1,600 bar is key to the new diesel engine's combustion process. Additionally, refinement is achieved using a precise multiple-injection process for each operating cycle. The combustion chambers have been optimised in their shape and dimensions to prevent unwanted turbulence and maintain a smooth and consistent combustion process at all times.
A diesel particulate filter almost eliminates diesel exhaust emissions and helps to make the MINI diesel engine one of the most environmentally friendly engines in its class.
Six-speed gearbox as standard
The new MINI One and new MINI Cooper D both come as standard with a six-speed manual gearbox. Dynamic acceleration is a result of the precise shift control provided by carbon friction plates and helical gears operating within an optimised syncromesh. With its long transmission ratio, the sixth gear allows optimum fuel economy, even at high speeds.
The MINI One will be available to customers with the option of a six-speed automatic transmission. A key feature is the Steptronic function, which allows the driver to shift gears in sequence using the gear lever or the standard-fit paddles on the steering wheel. For keener drivers, a Sports Button is available as an option for even shorter gearshift times and faster throttle response.
Features including a black finish to the car's radiator grille bars, door mirrors and tailgate handle are exclusive to the MINI One. The new MINI Cooper D's sporting prowess is underlined by the addition of a pronounced power dome on the car's bonnet. A discernibly larger air intake than on other MINI models features on the Cooper D, as does a crossbar in body colour on the lower intake.
Chassis and suspension
The go-kart driving experience is enhanced in the new MINI One and Cooper D through a new suspension set-up, as introduced on the MINI Cooper and Cooper S. MINI is the only car in its segment to be fitted with a central-arm rear axle featuring elaborate kinematics for optimum tyre-to-road contact.
Electrical Power Assisted Steering (EPAS) incorporating modern mechanical control gives the driver increased precision feedback. Variable power assistance dependent on speed ensures MINI drivers are guaranteed an involving drive every time they step into the car.
The new MINI Cooper and Cooper S went on sale in the UK on 18 November 2006. By the end of the year, close to 7,000 orders were taken for the new models. With sales looking strong into the New Year and the launch of the new MINI Convertible Sidewalk taking place in the spring, MINI is set for another great year at home on British roads.