Polls: Do You Wave at Other MINIs?

MotoringFile reader David Bromberg sent us this question the other day.

Does anyone wave anymore?

When I got my R53 in early 2005, one of the great things about owning the car was the sense of community. If you saw another MINI on the road, you knew how much fun they were having and would share a wave, a peace-sign, or some other gesture. There was even a manual of sorts from MINI exploring the different gestures. I’ve noticed that this acknowledgement has been decreasing lately, especially near where I live (metro-Atlanta).

Is this not a “thing” anymore?

So let’s ask you the readers. Do you wave? Do people wave back? Take our poll after the break.

Do you wave at other MINIs?

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How often do other MINI drivers wave back?

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  • Dean

    I did at first, but got tired of looking like an idiot. 😉

    Most people don’t wave back. If someone waves to me first & I notice in time, I will wave back.

  • Adam

    I see an average of 1 Mini every 4 miles on any drive. I can go to the grocery store on the corner, and see a Mini. I had a 1 Mini:2 Mile drive into work a couple of weeks ago. Far too many Mini’s to wave at.

  • ryan

    We live in Arizona and almost everyone has such dark tinted windows so it’s always hard to see the people in the MINI let alone if they are waving…I used to flash my lights

  • Drill

    I get more waves back in the States than I do here in Germany 🙁 (It makes me sad because I see more MINIs over here)

  • Adam

    I avidly participated in the Jeep wave however, when I had one.

  • david

    ever since I got the R60, wave-backs have fallen off… I knew I should have gotten stripes!

  • David, it’s funny you mention stripes. In the Twin Cities, I get a wave back about 75% of the time if the MINI has stripes on it, and about 30% of the time for non-stripe MINIs.

  • Dave

    Heck yes! I always wave or flash my lights, somtimes both. I never worry about looking stupid, they’re stupid for not waving back!!


  • Ronnie948

    It is kind of hard to see if the other person waves because of the dark tinted windows people have here in Florida.

  • !

    I wave my ass off to 80% of the MINIs I see but rarely get a wave back if ever.

  • MINIBro

    I also flash my headlamps if I cannot waive. Unfortunately the mainstream people have not caught on and they’re growing in number. MINI needs a campaign for this to make people aware of friendliness towards fellow motorers.

  • Still wave, don’t get much back these days.

  • Stephen

    When I got my first Mini 2 years ago, I got three waves the first week, so I return the favor by carrying on the tradition of waving to every Mini I see. These days, almost no one waves back. I figure though that if I stopped waving, someone would never learn this tradition and I’d be letting us all down, so I continue to wave even though I almost never get return waves.

  • Adam

    I’ll wave if its another modded one, and usually get one back. That is still rare though. All the rest are just people who could care less in my opinion.

    And flashing the lights usually means there is a cop ahead 🙂 So I only do that if indeed there is a cop waiting to catch people going the other way.

  • JonPD

    Wave and flash lights normally when I see them in time, I even motion towards R60’s (two finger salute) lol. Btw thank you BBC for making the occasional R60 driver know its not exactly a welcoming gesture.

  • Matthew Holly

    Definitely doesn’t happen as much as before. When someone has the same exact color combination as you it is likely to happen.

    I remember once in 2008 having someone in the car and telling her about the “mini wave” and then it happened. It was pretty cool.

  • Dr.Love

    I’m really glade you brought up this issue. I have been wondering why very few MINI owners wave back to me when I flash my lights & give them a wave. Why is this? Are we so emotionally dissconnected, that we don’t care to notice. The feeling of a family connection was always a nice part of the ownership. So, the next time you see me in my MINI, you better wave or I’m chasing you down. 🙂

  • Richard

    I Smile and Wave any chance I get. If they don’t wave back Oh well there loss!

  • beken

    I still wave. Most don’t wave back anymore. Probably because most have bought their cars second hand and are not really MINI motorers. However, I agree with Stephen. If you wave enough, eventually, others will learn. I also starting to find passengers in MINIs wave back more often than the drivers.

  • dacrema

    I waved at someone while in traffic the other day. She was in a new MINI. She didn’t seem to get it at first and then got a big grin on her face and waved back. Kind of made on the no shows worth while. I also acknowledge that people may be waving at me and I just can see it because of the glare on the windshield. I am actually suprised by how often I get a wave back.

  • Sean

    I always wave, when I notice another MINI. I do this knowing full well I’ll most likely either get no response or just a funny look.

  • Adam E

    I have the hardest time when I forget that I’m NOT in my MINI but still wave….

  • Bilbo Bagginjs

    I wave or flash whenever I see another MINI but I often just don’t see them. This became apparent when traveling with my wife and she would spot many more MINIs than I.

    I figure that it is because I am concentrating on the task at hand, driving, and not scanning for MINIs. But if I see one I will always wave or flash. So please do not take it personally if I do not wave, I just didn’t see you.

  • that.guy

    Double highbeam flash when I see another R32.

  • Frogberg

    Thanks for the shoutout, guys.

    It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who: 1. Waves even when others don’t 2. Feels a little silly when others don’t wave back 3. Is determined to continue to wave 4. Forgets to NOT wave when not in my MINI

    On a personal note, I make it a habit to never flash my lights since that can be taken the wrong way too easily.

  • Forgets to NOT wave when not in my MINI

    I’ve done this from my Vespa! D’oh!

  • Christian

    I only wave to other MINI drivers that is the same year as mine or earlier since they seem to wave back. Newer MINI owners seem to not wave back so I just look and smile at their MINI and not the drivers anymore.

  • Coops

    When I bought my mini back in 06 I had no idea about the wave. There were not too many where I live here in FL. It tooks me a couple years to catch on put now I wave proudly. But like many of you I still don’t get many waves back. Don’t worry, they will catch on =)

  • SFRedMCc

    I now only wave to other MINI Clubmans since we have so many MINIs in San Francisco.

  • Just Me

    I wave to every MINI I see! There are a lot of MINIs in my area, but I wave anyway. Some wave back, some don’t. It doesn’t discourage me from waving anyway.

  • John

    I wave, but usually don’t get one back. Youngish drivers and the elderly never wave. Probably good on the elderly, keep those eyes on the road!

  • John

    I dont wave but I give the other driver recognition. I usually do a second take on the mini that passed. (but only if they’re clearly modified) or Ill just give a nod. If its a modded mini 90% of the time they nod back or wave.

  • Maybe the MINI service departments could start sharing a handout with wave instructions like they gave at the time of delivery. Perhaps then they would help increase this community of love! I see waves less and less, it’s rare… and I for one miss it.

    Come on MINI, help out here with a compaign, maybe even toss a wave in one of your countryman commericals.

    I’m not sure how many owners are owners of “preowned MINIs” that take them to dealership but I’m guessing 95% of those owners have no clue

  • bee1000

    I still wave or give a thumb’s up to other MINIs most of the time. Speaking in broad strokes here:

    1. Best chance of a return wave is from a driver of a lightly modded R50/53.

    2. Seriously modded R53 = Too cool to wave back, but might exchange a nod.

    3. R56 = Very unlikely to wave back.

    4. Countryman = I, in my R53, am too cool to wave to you! So there!

    There are exceptions to all of those (except for #4!), but that’s generally my experience these days. Back in 2004 there were waves galore, and not just from other MINIs. Ah, the good ol’ days of people shouting out, “I love your car!” as I drove by. Now I don’t even get asked about my mileage at the gas station.

  • zmini

    I wave 30% of the time in the MINI, but 99% of the time on the bike!

  • Bilbo Bagginjs

    Christian said “I only wave to other MINI drivers that is the same year as mine or earlier since they seem to wave back. Newer MINI owners seem to not wave back so I just look and smile at their MINI and not the drivers anymore.”

    I have to agree with this. I think that many of the newer owners just do not understand what a MINI really is. To them it is just a stylish/hot/hep/cool tool to get from point A to point B. To them it might as well be a Yugo.

  • GregW

    This subject is similar to the situation with Car Clubs. Not every MINI buyer wants to join a car club, because only a few owners are enthusiastic about their car enough to join a group like these. It’s the same with waving. Some drivers couldn’t care a continental that you have a car similar to them, and also are not used to others waving at them for that reason. This was usually done by exclusive sports car owners.

  • Alexandre

    I used to wave when I was living in Mass (Boston) but when I stopped when I got back to Paris. To give you an idea of how many MINIs I come across everyday, l usually see 15 to 20 different MINIs during a 5 minutes walk from my apartment to the subway. So if I was driving, I would pretty much do so with one hand always waving. I don’t know for the rest of Europe, but there has never been a sense of community in France like there is in the US. Partly because there are so many MINIs and partly because my fellow countrymen don’t give a crap about cars.

  • Evan

    Mostly get return waves from the R50-R53 crowd. A modded R56 plus the R55 will return the waves too.

    When I first got the BMW I kept waving at MINIs and I just got weird looks. So now I only wave to MINIs when I’m in my R50. I remember back when I was a little kid in the 80s and my mom, in her E30, would wave, flash and honk at passing BMWs. That is now long gone. 🙁

  • Rocketboy

    I haven’t waved in a long time… back in the first 2 years of release, I would always wave, because it was a: rare, and b: an enthusiast who bought the car. With the number of non-enthusiasts out there, there’s no point in waving.

  • Wings

    I always try to smile and wave when I spot another MINI. While the responces are fewer, I still love it when I get a big smile and hearty wave in return.

  • b-

    I voted no but I do wave, I just don’t make a big deal about it if others don’t wave back or wave in general.

  • Rick Kim

    I stopped waving after getting no wave back for the first year of ownership. Once in a while I get a wave but I’m usually too slow to react.

  • CraigE

    I used to always wave when I had my R53. Now I just get funny looks when I waive from my E39 5er BMW.

  • Delaney

    Always. Every time.

  • Grant

    I wave at minis, ferraris, lambos, BMWs, porsche, and some VWs(R32s and depending on the gen, GTIs)… I am surprisingly well received, except for lambos, cause theyre driven by angry women and old men.

    But in general I get a good response from other R53s, r56 falls off, im worried the R60s wont see me from up there.

    I also wave from other cars out of habit, strange looks ensue.

  • Moe

    I wave to most passing Mini’s but usually do not get a return wave unless the tinted windows are down so they can see it. Only a few Mini owners, around here, initiate a wave. They will not see my response, unless the tinted windows are down.

  • Harry Dill

    I am of the opinion that MINI has diluted its identity since ’05. When the car was re-introduced to the U.S. market it represented the resurgence of a legendary icon and was enthusiastically welcomed by both cognoscenti and the uninitiated alike. There was a collective hubris that charged our spirit. Subsequent to ’06 enthusiasm began to wane as the true enthusiast found it increasingly difficult to be drawn to successive iterations.

    I think the spirit of MINI may regrettably continue to diminish as the brand continues to try to be all things to all people. The days when aficionados like Steve McQueen and events like the Monte Carlo Rally cultivated pride and a strong sense of camaraderie have been become lamented relics of a glorious past. Mini was and could arguably resurrect its proud identity by simply remembering the past with a much keener to the traditions that once gave it personality and distinction.

    In a few words — Keep the designs clean, lean, and mean. In my biased opinion, ’06 was the last of the “real” MINI designs (particularly the GP) the with its beautiful sheet metal contours, nicely proportioned wheel arches, curved glass c-pillars, functional hood scoop, reasonably sized “Big Ben” speedo, not to mention the tunable supercharged engine with its resonantly mellifluous note.

    Sad, but true, the elements that once made us smile and wave have become an artifact of MINI history.

  • Harry Dill

    Please excuse the followings editorial errors and corrections in caps to my preceding commentary:

    Mini HAD and could arguably resurrect its proud identity by simply remembering ITS past with a much keener EYE to the traditions that once gave it REMARKABLE personality and distinction. Thank you.


    Each year I have noticed it decrease in return waves, currently it is about 5 to 10% of the time. I think the question should be posed to MINI USA and the sales staff, they try to promote the community feel and that should include informing new owners to wave to other MINI owners on the road. Somehow I don’t think the newer MINI base is told the etiquette.

    So come on MINI USA and MINI worldwide bring out the wavy davy suction hand and get them in your windows!


  • John

    After reading more of the comments it doesnt surprise me that most of the wavers are R53 owners. Those are always the ones I get recognition from, with the occasional R56 S.

    R53 all the way

  • Tom

    Wow, well this questions goes a long way back – back to the old BMW days as well. When I got my R53 back in 2002 we all waved; now it is very rare. I think the difference is that at least here in SoCal/LA I would have to have my had up waving all the time since now a days there are MINI’s all over the place. Back when there were only a few it was special – now when i do wave people look at me shocked. So i don’t wave much anymore; except when I am in our old VW Westy – then I always wave to other VW Vanagons!

  • JonPD

    MINI is largely an appliance to more drivers with each day. The general enthusiast owner is a tiny part of the market anymore. Hence why MINI has taken the brand the direction it has. Largely this will only get worse with time.

  • I wanted a MINI since I first saw one and wanted to be part of the community. I will continue to try my best to force a wave out of every MINI I pass whether they like it or not!

  • rkw

    Nobody waves in San Francisco — way too many MINIs. A few weekends ago I experienced my record for density. In Pacific Heights, I came upon 8 MINIs parked on the street within a space of 100 yards.

  • r.burns

    I try to ignore those posting about the R53/R56 discrimination…

  • Robyn

    I used to wave all the time when I got my R53 back in 2003, but quickly discovered that in the area I live apparently people think they are too important to wave back, so I long ago gave up trying around here. I do attempt waving when I’m traveling outside this area and generally find I get a much better response.

    I agree with the statements the you’re more likely to get a return wave from one of the 1st generation cars, and if you see custom stripes, it’s almost a guaranteed wave back. The R56 is bought by too many people who bought it because of the fuel mileage, and oh yeah, it just happens to be cute.

    The Countryman? First off, I’ve only seen one on the roads around here so far (thankfully) but since I don’t consider them to be real MINIs I wouldn’t bother to wave anyway.

  • Sue

    If I am in a position to safely wave, I always do so. What I have found is that if I am in town going about day to day chores like my fellow drivers, I get fewer waves. But when I am on a road trip in the Sierra’s, Utah, Oregon, and the like, I always get a return wave. These drivers are my fellow Cooper enthusiasts.

  • JON M

    It’s kinda neat, cause I have noticed it has decreased over time, but there is always a few tell-tale signs that someone will wave. If you have stripes, or a bright color, checkered mirror caps etc, you are more likely to wave. If you drive pepper white, sparkling silver with no stripes or anything, you bought it for the MPG. You know, someone who bought one for the same reason they’d buy a prius…

  • When you see 10, 20 or 40 Mini’s on your morning commute, the waves stop pretty quickly.

  • Seems like when I see a Mini, it’s already gone by the time I get my hand up and waving. Sad to admit that I have wankled my wipers at Mini’s. Very few people wave at me any more. 🙁

  • Derek Cross

    I always wave to a passing MINI. Rarely get a wave back these days. But I notice I get a lot more wave backs in the summer months.

  • LeeL

    I also notice way less people waving back. Unbeleiveably, we did not have a dealer in the Raleigh area until last year, so it was a little more special to have a MINI as unless you bought it used at a place like Carmax, you had to jump through hoops to get it as the nearest dealers were all 2 hours or more away.

    Even still, I did notice a drop off with the R56 and a big dropoff (as well as increase in MINI sightings) since the dealer opened.

    I will admit that plenty of times, I have seen another MINI a little late as I was concentrating on driving and waved, but they may not have seen me, so that could be happened the other way as well.

    The funniest thing is our other vehicle is a 2005 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, our second Wrangler. My wife uses it as her daily driver but I will drive on weekends when we take it out. Waving has been a Jeep thing for quite a while. I have accidentally waved at MINIs from the Jeep and the reverse as well, so I imagine people are confused by that.

  • I live in a small town a couple of hours from the nearest MINI dealer. I only see a MINI every couple of days. The drivers usually wave back. I would expect that people would wave less where they’re more common.

  • MiniMonster

    There are so many where I live, I wave at the same combo instead. People do talk to me in parking lots and ask questions however.

  • Nikkos

    My wife had mentioned this very subject a month ago or so. She had mentioned that no one waved anymore. I told her to flash them instead. The results must have been good as I haven’t seen her since.

  • Edison

    I live in NJ. Too many a**holes out here so I stopped waving.

  • JonPD

    Likely the most telling is the 586 total votes out of how many thousands of enthusiast that read MF which is already a small percentage of the total people that own MINIs. I think the big change is not among the enthusiast MINI owner just more of the cars are sold to non-enthusiast. Brand excitement diluted by MINI’s own success and will only continue to get worse. All in all kinda odd MINI evolved through the decades that it took this to happen to BMW in a brief few years.

    Guess this also explains my general problems with MINI, they are building for the general owner versus the enthusiast as we are a minority population.

  • I think we’re all responsible for our own level of enthusiasm. MINI’s decisions about the R56, the R60, or even the kinds of people who bought MINIs after I did, has only as much influence on my love of my car (or my love of the brand) as I choose to let it. I may not love MINI because of these things, but I can still love the MINI brand in spite of them.

  • JonPD

    Not saying there is anything wrong with the MINI enthusiast, just saying there are day by day more non enthusiast driving MINIS which lower the chance of social interaction such as waving. I too still love the brand despite having nothing but hatred for the R60.

  • i wave religously to every MINI i see. even if the owner doesnt see me, i know the MINI does.

  • Dwight Walhood

    I’m hoping the MINI hasn’t turned into another “status symbol” like the old BMW 1600/2002. At first we all waved/flashed lights at each other, but by the early 70’s the owners were too busy keeping their noses in the air. I’ve seen the same thing happening in the 3yrs I’ve had my MINI.

  • Yes I wave. If no wave back then the other driver s–ks

  • walk0080

    I sometimes wave but only if the MINI is slightly modded or unique somehow… stripes, badge holder, etc… or if the owner drives with the sunroof wide open on a cold sunny day like I do 🙂

    Most MINI owners do not wave back though and I look like a dork.

  • Martin

    Classic Mini owners in the UK only started waving in the late 1980’s early 1990’s when the number of classic Mini’s on the road started to decline sharply. They are now a very rare sight on British roads so you usually get a wave from a fellow classic enthusiast.

    The New MINI owners also waved for the first year or so from 2001 in the UK but as MINI sales increased back to previous levels inevitabily the waving at every MINI became impossible!

  • Blackballed

    I didn’t take the time to read prior comments so my apologies for possible redundancy.

    I still waive, however, the return waives began to die off after the release of the R56 and Minis became less exclusive and more like the PT Cruiser in that everyone had one because they were “economical”.

    Prior to that they were mainly purchased by enthusiests and the people you passed were part of the “club”. R53 folks understand what I mean as you “had to be there” to know what 2002-2006 felt like. The R56 folks will think I’m trying to stir the pot. I’m not. I like the R56, however, it’s just not the same thing.

    I also waive a Minis even when driving my other cars, then feel like a fool.

  • Andy

    I was actually thinking the same thing recently, got an R50 in 2002 and remember how great it was, and also how annoying it could be to have to talk to people every time I stopped for gas. I live in Los Angeles and haven’t waved at or been waved to in a long time, but actually had a stop light open window discussion with a brand new Cooper S owner yesterday on the drive home from work. He was trying to decide how dark to go with the tint 🙂

  • msh441

    I drive an R56 JCW.

    I wave.

    Some wave back.

    Most do not.

  • As a R53 owner, I enjoyed the waving in the earlier days. But too many yoo-hoos own one now. I only wave to MINIs that are either tricked out or have badges on them. It’s an easy way to spot the Motorist from the Drivers.

  • I’ve been flipped off in Orange County by another MINI owner. But I still waive…

  • that.guy

    Yeah, I would say waving was cool in until around mid 2003. I probably waved regularly through August of that year, but after that the MINI density where I live exceeded the wave threshold. My current ride is quite rare (I see one no more than once a week), so I do wave/flash when I see another brother.

  • Kimble

    I live in the North East U.S. and I wave to every MINI I see. I usually get a response back; however, the hand gestured response is not always a wave.

  • dizylizzy

    there was no topic for me so I would but it would look really awkward for a volvo to wave at a mini, I’ll have to wait till I get my dads.

  • Dave

    Wasting a wave ? It’s sorta like the state lottery. Can’t win if you don’t play.

    So keep waving…..gotta give some to get some.

  • Ian

    I only wave at girls.

  • Ian

    I’m sorry… ladies

  • Aurel

    There are more MINIs than Corollas in NYC. I nod … sometimes.

  • Hoover
    If you drive pepper white, sparkling silver with no stripes or anything, you bought it for the MPG. You know, someone who bought one for the same reason they’d buy a prius…

    I’m feeling a bit like a second class citizen here. Mi coche: stripped R56 Cooper, Pepper White, no stripes–no nothin.’ I love it, but I’m not feeling the love here. That’s OK. I sometimes feel like my bare-bones car is more of a “pure” MINI than a highly optioned S or JCW. But then I realize that I am falling into that same line of thinking that I cannot stand, instead of just being happy that the brand is thriving. I want MINI to be around for a long time. Drive whatever you want. And wave to the person driving the Rwhatever. Welcome them to our dysfunctional, passionate family.

  • TheDude

    Jeep owners still wave.

  • Bob hayhurst

    …I absolutely wave; since 03 in an r53 and now in an r56. Even to the extent that I tell riders in my car that they must look away while I flash the secret “mini” sign (haha). Waving to me is part of the mini expierence; if you get it, great, if not; oh well…

  • Bob hayhurst

    …and,oh by the way; I’ve got the same identical picture passing the mini motoring assistance guy while traveling thru Kansas at a high rate of speed during mtts 2010. He always waved even when he was getting lapped…

  • Mari Ernst

    I do but no one seems to wave back – so I am slowing down on it. I feel foolish when no one else does it!

  • I think MINI needs to bring out a “save the wave” campaign. This will show the sense of community that MINI owners have and enlighten current motorers to recognize other MINIs on the road.

    I waved to a MINI in my neighbourhood and a few weeks later he spotted me at the local coffee shop. He asked me why I waved – did I know him? Did I think he was good looking? I said, “because you’re a MINI owner, like ME!” lighbulb flash This guy had no clue MINI owners do this. Now I see him waving first 🙂 (I’m so proud about this!) It’s all about education, baby!

  • JM in NH

    I am a relatively new MINI owner. I run into only about 1 or 2 MINIs in an average 45 min. commute, so when I see another MINI, it’s special. I thumbs up/peace/wave at every MINI I see – grinning stupidly all the while (b/c I have had that stupid grin on my face ever since I took my first drive.) Crazy in love with this car for so many reasons, including: (1) iconic past on the rally circuit; (2) a few of my favorite Beatles drove MINIs; (3) the car looks different from everything else out there; (4) the camaraderie with fellow MINI owners. It is my Sopwith Camel. Sadly, only a handful of fellow MINI drivers have acknowledged my ‘hello’ -if they even bother to look, they seem to think a bug is driving my car. However, a few do acknowledge with a wave or thumbs up and a smile–and that is great! Feels like we’re in a secret rally and it makes my commute! I’ll keep on waving! So Hello, Thumbs Up, Peace to all of you, from me!

  • marksmith

    I even wave at Mini’s when I forget I’m driving my GTI or truck. Guess that’s why I don’t get too many wave backs!

  • dr

    I used to wave first….now I only wave when waved at because too few return my wave.

  • Blackballed

    Good point about waving at Minis where it’s obvious an emthusiest drives it (individualized styling) vs someone who’s being practical.

  • TOS

    I have and always will wave. @lilcoopr–great idea about “save the wave”. If MINIUSA is reading this, here’s a great opportunity for a new advertising campaign using this slogan.

  • Hoover
    Good point about waving at Minis where it’s obvious an emthusiest drives it (individualized styling) vs someone who’s being practical.

    Great…except that there are those of us who are enthusiasts who prefer to keep it simple.

  • Hoover

    And then I totally blew it this morning. Sorry orange R57 on Hwy 1. I was adjusting the volume on my stereo when you waved. My hand was not in the optimal wave position.

  • Garrick

    Got my first wave today 🙂

  • Bob Hayhurst

    …coming south out of D.C. this morning on I-95 @ Quantico, I passed a blue R56 with bonnet stripes. I waved and got a smile and wave from the lady driver. It was something very simple and it went unnoticed by the surrounding traffic. It made my morning. All right, I know… I know…, but to me it sums up all the reasons why I drive a MINI. Thanks Nathanial for hitting the bullseye with just the right question. I’m impressed that a simple hand gesture could elict 100 comments… or is it really about something else?

  • Cory

    If you don’t wave back, you’re driving the wrong car.

  • that.guy
    I think MINI needs to bring out a “save the wave” campaign. This will show the sense of community that MINI owners have and enlighten current motorers to recognize other MINIs on the road.

    But this will also show that the wave is dying out and that new buyers missed out on a “golden age” when the MINIs were more distinctive and relatively rare. Maybe pointing out that current buyers are late to the party, or worse that the party is over, is not the best marketing strategy.

  • Wolfgang Gullich

    So, I noticed that this was an alarming trend a while ago…when my wife and I both had MINIs together in 06, seems almost every MINI driver waved back…now it’s almost nil. Now when I drive my Jeep JK (’10 Wrangler Unlimited) I’ve noticed about 60-70% of other drivers still wave back (and that’s for all generations: CJ, YJ, TJ, LJ).

    Unfortunately, it seems the MINI community isn’t as tight-knit as I once thought with most people buying them for the cute/fun car factor to heck with everyone else and another reason my daily car is a Wrangler…fellow owners generally care about each other. My wife has since given up waving to other MINI drivers now unless they wave first…sad it had to come to that.

  • RAugie

    I will wave at a mini that looks like its been modified or has an enthusiast driver. Stock coopers that look like they are just driven for their fuel economy dont seem like ones that will wave back..

  • JON M

    Hey Hoover, Of course I don’t mean your type specifically, I love pepper white. What I meant was, I have had more success with people who has some sort of “flavor” added to it, than those who don’t. Obviously your on here, so it’s clear your not one of them. Where did you buy your MINI? I believe your MINI has the painted fenders… certainly one in a few.

  • Volkan

    As evident by the number of people who still wave AND own an R50/53, the wave was limited to the early enthusiasts. When I did a cross country trip in May 2003, every gas station took 30 minutes to get out after educating the public about this “toy car”. At my stop at the grand canyon, a father from Arizona put his 4 year on the wheel of my MCS and filmed him pretending racing the car, because there was nothing like it… Those were the days. Now, the metropolitan area that I live in, I only wave at R53 owners and receive few replies back. I am guessing that the R56 owners who still wave must have moved from an R53 🙂

  • Roy

    We live in the mountains of NC and everybody waves at everybody. These are friendly country folk, but they probably don’t wave at the revenuers. People wave if they see me walking to the mailbox. Children on bikes wave if I’m driving by. You don’t need a MINI.

  • cletus

    In 2003 nearly every MINI owner waved back. And the “I LOVE your car!” comments from others were rampant. Gradually, both experiences dwindled to the point that hardly any MINI owners noticed me waving by 2008 or so, and the comments from others were extremely rare.

    But interestingly, I’ve started hearing more of those “I LOVE your car!” comments … probably half a dozen in the past couple of months. And if other MINI owners don’t initiate a wave, a lot more are waving back these days.

    I can’t explain the change, though.

  • agranger

    I stopped waving a few years ago, but decided to wave at every MINI I see for a month. After 3 weeks (3-4 waives a day), I only got 1 wave back and that was from a very well modded car… obviously an enthusiast.

  • Hoover

    Time to get that badge holder and those blackjack side scuttles. That should help.

  • Don

    Every time I see a MINI I wave. Most of the time, if the other driver even notices, I get an “are you weird or something” look back. The sense of comradeship that originally existed throughout the MINI community has dissipated over the years.

  • Paul

    I drive a 1959 Morris mini and the the BMW Mini drivers have never ever waved back at me…..although one guy took the time to laugh at me.

  • Harry Dill

    The solution is very simple. Give us something to wave about and we will wave. Give us something to shield our eyes from (like the abysmally deformed and hopefully aborted 2012 S prototype) and we will soon start to channel waving energy into shock waves of horror. Please, oh lords of CAD, create that which will inspire our enthusiasm anew.

  • Harry Dill

    Another plausible fix — Create the “new town” of Minipolis (not to be confused with Minneapolis)somewhere Far From The Maddening Crowd in exurbia. Implement a zoning ordinance requiring all residents to bear proof of MINI ownership and watch the jubilant waves of MINI pride soon triumph over the amber waves of grain.

  • Harry Dill

    “amber waves of grain and … groan!”

  • andrej

    @Paul just a few days ago I gave a “thumb up” to a classic Mini driver, and he waved back.

    On the other hand, I pretty much stopped waving, just too many Minis around, and too many fancy chicks who’d think I was waving because I think they’re hot and not for the car :/

    If I see a Mini pretty much the same as mine, R50, liquid yellow, I wave, or sometimes just randomly.

    Recently I was taking off from a gas station and a middle-aged lady had just arrived in a Mini and bitterly complained something about how she’s going crazy with spending 20euros every other day on gas. I drove pass her and gave her a thumb up, and instantly she changed from bitterness to a happy smile and a wave back. It’s just these moments that make Mini an awesome car to have and drive. Like when you’re stressed and angry about some every-day real-life things, only a look at your car can point out that some things are there just for fun. 🙂

  • Hans

    I have only gotten 4-5 waves tops. I do wave back if I get a wave, but I’ve long stopped waving to others. Part of this may be due to living in the Los Angeles area where MINI’s are all too common of a sight.

  • Julie-Anne

    I find that even when on the Harley I wave at Mini’s, I wonder why they don’t “wink” back…:)

  • Harry Dill

    Of course if you are feeling the agonized pangs of severe “wave deficiency” (not to mention the heartbreak of psoriasis) stop “motoring” and start motorcycling atop a Harley … but make sure your colors are biker correct before venturing off into unchartered territory — better yet become a HOG member and “ride to live, live to ride” forevermore my brothers and sisters!

  • Eric

    I suspect that most of those who wave probably are not visiting websites such as MF or are “into” their car like the rest of us.

  • works4me

    Yes, I wave whenever I see another MINI. I “met” another MINI several times a week for two weeks until she got it and waved enthusiastically back. I’ll bet she now waves to all MINIs.

    I even had a wave from an original Mini. I waved back.

  • okeeton

    Have had my Cooper S since 2003… when I first got the car and for the first two years waves seemed a given. But the density in the bay Area of Minis on the Highway got to be a little absurd… in my neighborhood alone there is almost a mini on every block within a three block radiusof my house… I quit waving due to fatigue from saturation! Still love my Mini tho if someone waves I waves at m I wave back – reminds me of the old days… I miss those days!

  • John

    I always wave, not getting as many in return as we did, and as Adam said, I always wave even when we’re in the Subaru wagon, my wife just shakes her head and laughs.

  • Andre

    I honk my horn if we make eye contact…most will honk back!

  • Eric

    I’ll say 90%, because I miss the occasional MINI (shocking, I know).  In return, I might be getting 50% or less.

  • Eric

    I’ll say 90%, because I miss the occasional MINI (shocking, I know).  In return, I might be getting 50% or less.

  • earthyAK

    I notice people don’t wave as much anymore! I think more “non-mini” enthusiasts are buying mini’s, and that’s the problem. Those people know nothing of this site either…probably. So that’s the consulation I give myself when I feel the bit of rejection from a non reciprical mini gesture!

    • postofficemike

      That’s probably more accurate. Some people just buy a car and it happens to be a Mini.  It’ll be traded in after a couple of years.

  • postofficemike

    Kids are more likely to wave than stuffy older folks that “think” they’re cool.  I’m older, but KNOW I’m not “cool”, just lucky!

  • Hot Rod Hemi

    I notice that the countrymen don’t seem to be of the Mini Community and hardly ever wave. Just opinion here in idea.