MINI Shortens Oil Change Interval

A regular topic on White Roof Radio is our opinion that the factory-specified 1 year/15,000 (approximately) mile oil service intervals on the R56 MINIs are far too long. WRR co-host and MF contributor, Todd Pearson, snapped this photo of a window sticker on a recent MINI showing a new oil change interval of 1 year/10,000 miles. Given the number of R56s (and R50/R53s) that have had oil-related troubles, it makes sense that MINI would re-consider this interval. However, we don’t yet have any information as to exactly why MINI has dropped the interval back to 1 year/10,000 miles, which was the original service interval on the R50/R53.

Speculations under the White Roof and here at MotoringFile abound. Did the costs of warranty engine repairs finally cross a line where it made more financial sense to take steps to prevent issues? Did oil usage data make a separate case for shorter intervals? Is this a reaction to common consumer behavior — i/e owners never bothering to check their oil in the first place until they got a warning light or it was time for their scheduled oil change? Does this change in service policy open MINI up to litigation over past engine troubles?

Whatever the reasons, it’s a good thing to see the interval shortened. Now responsible owners need only do one 5,000-7,000 mile mid-cycle oil change instead of two. New owners, what are you hearing from your dealer? Who’s been changing their oil regularly? Sound off in the comments.