After reading MotoringFile’s review of the Cargo Storage Case I thought it would be a good idea to submit a review of MINI’s Rear Saddlebag.
The saddlebag adds three storage compartments to the boot by attaching underneath the removable boot shelf. Installation only takes a minute or two, as three screws are simply driven into the shelf.
I find the saddlebag’s difference from the cargo storage case is what makes it more useful: Instead of one large pocket, it has three smaller pockets. I store large items in the floor of the boot; the smaller items are tougher to tuck away and the saddle bag is perfect for them. I keep my tool kit in the larger left pouch while the other pouches are filled with smaller items like towels, bungie cords, and duct tape. It is also designed to hold spare CD changer cartridges.
Another advantage I feel the saddlebag has over the cargo storage case is that it is made out of the same carpeting material as found in the rest of the boot. It matches better. Furthermore it has a nicely embroidered MINI logo on the right side.
Unfortunately the construction does not warrant the saddlebag’s $120 price. The velcro strips that are used to close the flaps are not stitched on, just stuck with adhesive (they have not moved, but the corners are curling away). The two halves of carpeting are held together with plastic rivets, one of which has broken. The carpet itself is by no means an expensive material. The price simply reflects that this is an official BMW accessory.
Despite the construction and price, I feel the Rear Saddlebag is a better choice for me than the one-pocket vinyl Cargo Storage Case. It adds utility and a nice touch to the boot. The saddlebag retails for $120 and is available from your MINI dealer and Outmotoring ( part number 82 11 0 154 464).