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Car reviews - Mini - Convertible - Cooper

Overview

Mini’s base Convertible sheds some handicaps to be viable alternative to S sibling

Mini logo28 Oct 2016

By STUART MARTIN

THE Mini Convertible Cooper S always had the fun factor of the modern Mini reincarnation under BMW.

With forced induction – from either a supercharger or a turbocharger, depending on the vintage – the S and its JCW cousins had the pep to match the brattish exterior and live up to the heritage.

But the standard Cooper in naturally-aspirated form was more pose than punch, requiring momentum maintenance for serious point-to-point performance, rather than possessing the outputs to warrant traction control.

The new model might still play second fiddle in outright numbers to its more sporty siblings, but its far more able to live up to the Mini even though it has dropped a cylinder.

The addition of direct injection and a turbocharger, as well as the inherent (if offbeat) charm of a three-cylinder petrol engine, has made the base Cooper Convertible anything but a poor substitute.

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Model release date: 1 April 2016

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