Archive for July 2011

MotoringFile’s New MINI Countryman

MotoringFile Sections: MotoringFile Garage, R60 (Countryman) Jul 31st, 2011 37 Comments

Earlier this week MotoringFile took delivery of our Countryman long term tester. Why is this one special? It’s not like the site’s contributors are totally devoid of MINIs. Nathaniel has an R53 and DB has an R50. But I’ve been without a MINI (of my own) for almost three years. Yes the person who founded MF has been MINI-less since 2008. So this new Countryman is not only about us testing a new MINI (long-term) but it’s also about me getting back in a MINI. And not just any MINI but the Countryman. The car that will reinvents what we thought a MINI could be.

But lets get that out of the way and talk about what we’ve got in the garage. Last March you helped us spec out our Countryman so many of you likely remember what we ended up with. Perhaps unsurprisingly, you thought we should go big with the options and the model. So that meant an All4 Cooper S for starters. And when it comes to options, there weren’t many things we said no to. Navigation, all packages and every creature comfort you could imagine. On the outside you helped us choose Light White and Pure Red on the inside. It’s like a fine gray english suit jacket with a surprising touch of color on the inside. And it works. In fact in person it’s exactly what we were hoping for to help give our R60 just a dash of color and irreverence.

You can see the full list and initial thoughts after the break. continued →

MINI WRC Team: Fails to Finish After Positive Start

MotoringFile Sections: Countryman WRC, R60 (Countryman) Jul 31st, 2011 4 Comments

Via MINI Motorsports: Unfortunately the MINI WRC Team did not make it to the finish in Finland. Despite this, it was a positive three days. You can find the best quotes and photos from day three here.

David Richards, Team Principal: “There is obviously a great sense of disappointment throughout the team that the rally should end for both Dani and Kris within sight of the finish. However, we have to take heart from the performance of the cars throughout the event, with their pure speed and the fact we were close to the pace right from the word go. We now go to a very different surface, with the asphalt rally of Germany which will present further challenges and another step in the learning curve for our new team.” continued →

MINI WRC: Rally of Finland Day 2

MotoringFile Sections: Countryman WRC, Official News Jul 29th, 2011 3 Comments

MINI continues it’s learning process this weekend at the Rally of Finland. Kris Meeke finished in an impressive 5th with Dani Sordo in 14th for the day. Overall however Sordo is in 7th with Meeke (who had a tough day 1) is in 8th.

(Via MINIMotorsport) Dave Wilcock, Technical Director: “Today we are particularly pleased with Kris, who is driving very well. His plan is just to learn the roads, get through the rally and go home with experience. He is over achieving above our expectations, and driving within himself and taking no risks. We had a small problem when his car would not start, and so he booked in two minutes late. It seems to have cured itself, but then problems are never isolated, so we need to have a good look at that. Dani is driving well, but nobody knows these stages from today. He is happy with the car, the tyre wear seems to be good, but on the stages he knows tomorrow we are expecting him to go well and up the performance to show what the car can do.” continued →

BMW & MINI Win Four Awards in the J.D. Power APEAL Study

MotoringFile Sections: Awards, Official News, R60 (Countryman) Jul 28th, 2011 3 Comments

2011 MINI Countryman Cooper S

Official Release: Driving pleasure, premium quality and reliability guarantee the latest models from the BMW and MINI brands the highest acclaim in international automobile markets. That has been confirmed yet again in a recent study conducted by international market research firm J.D. Power. In its latest customer survey – the Automotive Performance and Layout Study (APEAL) – assessing satisfaction levels among North American new car buyers, the BMW 5 Series range, BMW X3, BMW Z4 and MINI Countryman emerged as winners of their respective vehicle segments. In addition, four more models from the BMW Group finished in the top three of their category. This tally means the BMW Group boasts the highest number of segment winners of all manufacturers in the latest APEAL survey. continued →

MotoringFile’s Long Term MINI Countryman Test Car Arrives

MotoringFile Sections: R60 (Countryman) Jul 28th, 2011 25 Comments

You helped us design it. Now after many months and a few delays (we thought the ship went down for awhile) our MINI Countryman All4 MCS is here. And rest assured you will hear all about what it’s like to live with it over the next year. But for now, here’s a quick look under the Chicago sun. (Gallery after the break) continued →

Three in the Top Ten

MotoringFile Sections: Countryman WRC Jul 28th, 2011 2 Comments

(Via MINI Motorsports) Special Stage 1: Not only Dani and Kris finished the first stage strong. Also private MINI WRC driver Matti Rantanen showed how much homecourt advantage matters on the demanding stages of Rally Finland. The Finnish driver finished sixth overall. Three more MINI WRC cars with Armindo Araujo, Mattias Therman and Daniel Oliveira at the wheel also made it safely through the opening “Lankaama” stage. continued →

3rd Generation MINI to Debut at MINI United 2012?

MotoringFile Sections: F56 Two-Door Hardtop, MINI United Jul 28th, 2011 58 Comments

The 3rd Generation MINI (known internally as the F56) will debut late next summer at MINI United. And if you feel like you’ve heard this news six months ago on WRR and MF, you’re right. However with several sources recently confirming our original report it’s now 100% clear to us that MINI plans on making MINI United a bigger deal than even usual. continued →

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1st Gen MINI
R50: One & MC Hatch
R52: All 1st Gen MINI Convt.
R53: MCS Hatch
2nd Gen MINI
R55: Clubman
R56: Hatch
R57: Convertible
R58: Coupe
R59: Roadster
R60: MINI Crossover
R61: MINI Crossover Coupe
3rd Gen MINI
F54: Clubman
F55: Five Door Hatch
F56: Hatch
F57: Convertible
F60: MINI Crossover
F58: Traveller

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