Wedged nicely at position #31 behind the Vauxhall Corsa VXR and in front of the Renault Clio 197 you will find the 2007 R56 MCS.
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Look at the thing: an insult to authenticity. All its vents are blanks and the bonnet vent goes nowhere; it fed the intercooler on the last-gen supercharged engine but the turbo’s is elsewhere.
But forget the tricksy falseness and you’ve got a car that forges a powerful bond with its driver. BMW always insisted the Mini got a low-slung driving position – its steering wheel and pedals are absolutely straight ahead. The steering is talkative and confidence-boosting, so it’s easy to have the Mini scuttling through corners right on its limit. Sure, it’s a bit short on traction and it’s got laughably tiny rear seats, but judged on what matters in a hot hatch – the hotness – the Mini is near-perfect.