The all-new MINI Coupé, the brand’s first two-seater sports car, will go on sale on 1st October 2011 priced from £16,640.
Green-Car-Guide.com has been in the MINI Coupé and from the driving seat you’re very aware that this car does not have the very upright windscreen of other models in the MINI range. The A-pillars and windscreen are sharply raked by 13? compared to the MINI Hatch, resulting in a smaller frontal area that gives the MINI Coupé better aerodynamic properties.
Air flow is also optimised by the integrated spoiler at the rear of the roof, and via a unique active rear spoiler housed in the bootlid. It deploys automatically when the car reaches 50 mph – and drops down again at 37 mph – but can be operated manually via a button in the overhead control panel. The Coupé is the first MINI in history to feature an active rear spoiler, which reduces lift at the rear axle to improve aerodynamic balance and road grip. The car also features the rather unique ‘helmet design’ roof.
From the driver’s seat the interior is similar to other models in the range, however it’s behind the seats where the changes are evident, with the rear seats being replaced by luggage space – which, at 280-litres, is 20 litres larger than the MINI Clubman – and which MINI proudly boasts can accommodate two standard sized-suitcases.
MINI promises that the car will have a level of handling agility unmatched in the small car segment, and the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé has the fastest acceleration and top speed of any volume-produced MINI to date.
Power for the MINI Coupé comes from the latest generation of BMW Group four-cylinder petrol and diesel engines. Outputs range from 122 hp/90 kW in the MINI Cooper Coupé to 211 hp /155 kW in the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé. The recently launched performance diesel engine, the 143 hp/105 kW Cooper SD, is also available and the line-up is completed with the Cooper S which offers 184 hp /135kW.
Fuel economy on the combined cycle stretches from 39.8 mpg in the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé to 65.7 mpg in the Cooper SD model, while CO2 emissions are as low as 114 g/km on the Cooper SD. Even the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé emits only 165 g/km.
The Cooper SD variant offers the best fuel economy, lowest emissions highest torque output of any MINI but it will still sprint to 62 mph in under eight seconds and carry on to a top speed of 134 mph – along with a BIK value of just 13%, and zero first year road tax.
All versions of the MINI Coupé come with the brand’s MINIMALISM environmental technology as standard, providing excellent powertrain efficiency. Features such as Brake Energy Regeneration, Auto Start/Stop+, Shift Point Display+, Electric Power Steering and the need-based operation of ancillary components help to make efficient use of fuel with low emissions. Additional features include innovative thermal encapsulation of the drivetrain, which shortens the fuel-sapping warm-up period after a cold start. All of these result in the MINI being the cleanest Coupé in the market place today.
A six-speed manual gearbox is standard but an automatic transmission, a six-speed gearbox with Steptronic function, available with shift paddles, can be ordered as an option for the MINI Cooper Coupé, MINI Cooper S Coupé and MINI Cooper SD Coupé.
The MINI Coupé has Electric Power Steering (EPS); this electro-mechanical system features speed-dependent power assist, reducing the effort required from the driver during parking and other manoeuvres. It cuts the amount of assist at higher speeds to improve road feel and directional stability.
A Sport Button on the centre console is standard on all MINI Coupé models, pressing the Sport Button alters the response characteristics of the accelerator to deliver sharper, sportier reactions and is designed to support a more performance-minded driving style which requires more steering input but provides more responsive feel.
All MINI Coupé four-cylinder petrol engines come with BMW Group’s VALVETRONIC technology – a fully variable valve control system which adjusts valve lift and opening times in direct relationship to the driver’s command on the throttle pedal, delivering more torque and better fuel consumption.
The four-strong MINI Coupé range will go on sale through MINI dealers from 1st October 2011. The price of the MINI Cooper Coupé is £16,640, the MINI Cooper S Coupé: £19,775, the MINI Cooper SD Coupé: £20,510, and the MINI John Cooper Works Coupé is £23,795.