Used MINI Cooper S (2006 - 2016) Review

Review by Simon McBride on
Last Updated: 02 Sep 2014
4.5
The MINI Cooper S has an historic name stretching all the way back to the early days of the small car’s history. However, there is nothing old fashioned about the latest Cooper S, offering both petrol and diesel engines with strong performance.

MINI Cooper S (06-16)
  • Strong performance
  • Retro styling
  • Great fun to drive
  • Funky interior
  • Few bargains for the used buyer
  • Air con wasn't standard on earlier models

New price range:

£16,900 - £40,885

Used price range:

£1,844 - £19,695

View all used prices

Summary

Parkers Rating:

4.5 out of 5

The MINI Cooper S has an historic name stretching all the way back to the early days of the small car’s history. However, there is nothing old fashioned about the latest Cooper S, offering both petrol and diesel engines with strong performance.

This is allied to economy and emissions that are bang up to date, while the interior of the MINI continues to offer a unique style that has helped make it a sales hit from the moment BMW first relaunched the MINI brand in 2001.

Style and substance

While some may mumble and grumble the new MINI is not anywhere nears as small and compact as the original car that inspired it, there’s no doubt the modern MINI is a hugely appealing machine in its own right.

The styling pays its dues to the original but there are plenty of other flourishes that distinguish the current car from the crowd, especially when Fiat and Volkswagen both have their own retro models to tempt buyers away from the MINI. However, the Fiat 500 and Volkswagen Beetle cannot match the MINI for the way it drives, which is one element the new car keeps entirely intact from the original. With its squat, square stance, the MINI is great fun to drive and the Cooper S models back this up with the power and performance you’d expect of a car bearing this badge.

Individual

Since the first modern MINI rolled off the line in 2001, and following on with the second generation of BMW MINI in 2006, the company has offered a bewildering array of options and equipment to help make your car your own. There are three basic packs to choose from, comprising Salt, Chili and Pepper, that group together some essential and desirable options.

Beyond that, however, there’s a plethora of accessories and options, from spotlights and alloy wheels all the way to different roof decals and interior finishes. All of this helps make the MINI tailor itself to the exact tastes of its first owner, but it also means used buyers need to be specific and careful to choose a car with a specification that matches their needs and wants. For the full MINI Cooper S review read on.

Parkers Ratings

Overall

4.5 out of 5

Performance

4.5 out of 5

Handling

4.5 out of 5

Comfort

3 out of 5

Practicality

2.5 out of 5

Behind the wheel

4 out of 5

Safety

4 out of 5

Reliability

4 out of 5

Running costs

4.5 out of 5

Green credentials

3.5 out of 5

Buying used

3 out of 5

Selling

4 out of 5

Equipment

3 out of 5

What owners say...

 Has enough space for luggage and weekly shopping especially when you drop down the back seats back rests. Perfect for two people.  

5 out of 5

John Dyble ,   01 Oct 2014    ... read more

 Size - nippy-zippy but also a car you can bumble around in.  

2 out of 5

Matt Law ,   05 Nov 2013    ... read more

 Nobody buys a Cooper S for practicality, it's a fun car, and the appeal is the driving experience.  

5 out of 5

Anonymous ,   28 Aug 2013    ... read more

See all Owners' Reviews

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