MINI USA Sales Down 13% for November


Sales are down across the board with one interesting exception. The Paceman has finally found buyers. 631 in November – almost double that of the Clubman. And what of the Roadster and Coupe? They’re fallen off a cliff. Not surprising considering the time of the year but it’s somewhat shocking to see the most exciting car in the line-up – the Roadster – selling under 100 united in a month. Full sales figures after the break.

Official release: MINI USA reported sales of 4,575 automobiles, a decrease of 12.8 percent from the 5,248 sold in the same month a year ago. Year-to-date, MINI sales in the U.S. are up 0.4 percent on volume of 59,910 compared to 59,667 in the first eleven months of 2012.

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MINI Pre-Owned Vehicles In November, MINI used automobiles (including MINI NEXT certified pre-owned and pre-owned) reported their best month ever on sales of 1,936 automobiles, an increase of 46.8 percent from the 1,319 automobiles sold in November, 2012. January through November, MINI used vehicle sales are up 21.3 percent on volume of 20,079 compared to 16,552 in the same period of 2012.

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Written By: Gabe

  • Josh Young

    The reason the Paceman is selling is because employees are snatching up an amazing offer specially created for them. If it weren’t for that, MINI would be crying.

    • John McLauchlan

      Also, the Paceman is being heavily discounted for consumers. Anyone considering to get one, now would be a good time.

      • Josh Young


    • RacerX_MINI

      Yes, the incentives and deals are crazy on the 2013 AND 2014 Paceman models right now, especially for employees. The advertised $222/mo for a 36 mo lease on the Cooper Paceman has $3500 out of pocket for the consumer. That same lease deal for employees is $143/mo with $0 out of pocket. And there are no typos there. Crazy. The 2014 deals are equally as generous. Now if they would only do the same for the roadster, I would be game! :o)

    • EHans

      That, and I hear a TON of Paceman ads on the local AM station, KFI out of LA. I’ve always heard Mini ads, but now it is specifically the $220/mo lease special. I have to believe that this is a nationwide ad campaign, or at least in the big cities.

  • crabbyolddad

    I’m just guessing, but Mini has attempted to become all cars for everyone. There’s way too many models. The original Mini was only the Sedan and the Clubman IIRC. When VW resurrected the bug they brought out two models, the Sedan and the Convertible. Mini has not only got the convertible, but the roadster. They don’t only have the sedan but also a coupe. They have the Mini and then the Mini on steroids. Seven different models not to mention three of those models also available as an S. I wonder if that doesn’t dilute the enthusiasm for the cars. Either that or the realization of the cost of repairs after the warranty runs out. An automatic transmission that can’t be repaired and must be replaced for around $8000? A clutch job that will run in the $2000+ area? Stupid runflat tires that cost $1000 a set? And underpinnings that are almost 100% BMW and guaranteed to cost an arm and a leg to repair or replace? And how about the extremely limited dealer network? After those near the dealers have bought who is left? Fiat is struggling with a similar problem of dealer network, or a lack thereof. Car quality aside, if you don’t attempt to reach the public, they will drive right by. I live on Long Island and the nearest dealers are a realistic hour away. If you live in Springfield Mass, you are easily 2 hours or more from a Mini dealer and Springfield Mass isn’t exactly the sticks.

    • glangford

      I agree with everything you said. I’d also add the fact that Mini is now sitting at the bottom of CR’s list of most unreliable car brands, the worst. You mention Fiat, at least they aren’t in the bottom 10 on that list. We have a couple of Arbath owners at work who are thrilled with their cars, and haven’t had a lick of a problem.

      As far as servicing goes, it’s fairly easy to beat the high cost of repairs with a good indy shop. The couple of times I had out of warranty servicing on my Mini, I was able to beat dealer cost by half for the same service. 1000 dollar brake service for 500 (with Akeebono pads, no dust), oil change, vehicle check, and computer reset 200 at the dealer, 100 with the indy shop.

  • R.O

    I attended the San Francisco Int’l Car Show over the Thanksgiving weekend. Mini had a 2014 F56 S Cooper on Display (no base F56). Here is my quick take of the car:

    Volcanic Orange is Yellow. Nice looking color. Would be nice if it was also available for the non S Cooper.

    Exterior: It’s not as bad looking as the pictures make it. The front brake ducks and rear duct don’t stick out as far as it looks in all the pics but it still looks like an aftermarket add on.

    There is concern by some that post on this site regarding the “overhang”. Well the F56 is a larger car but it’s not that bad in the overall looks of the car. I believe Gabe posted (wrote) that the F56 front look is closer to the R50/53 than the R56. That is accurate.

    Front black bumper: It’s not a big as the pictures make it out to be. But – Mini did have a Euro sized license plate on it. With a US plate mounted it make the bumper may look out of proportion. From the pictures I was expecting the bumper to be thicker and sticking out more.

    Rear of car – you can immediate see that the car is wider. The tails light are huge. It may be more noticeable because the light doesn’t have a surround ring like the R50/53 did. The boot/hatch chrome handle is longer and wider but then again the car is wider. Inside the boot was ok but I guess I was expecting a bit more room. The under the floor space is nice but not as deep as I thought it would be.

    Interior of car – The car was confirmed with the entry level media display screen. I must admit, it wasn’t as bad as I though and actually nice. Gabe noted on Whiteroof radio that the controls are user friendly and nice – very true. I did get to play with the radio and media controls a bit (after my 3rd visit to the car that day). I like it (don’t like that their is no more CD player – my pet peeve.) I didn’t tell the Mini rep maybe Mini should offer buyers who have lots of CD’s a conversion to MP4 program (free of course)

    Materials overall are an upgrade from the R50/53 and R56.

    Temp controls – huge improvement over the R56.

    Some things I didn’t like or concerned about:

    Red Start/Stop toggle switch: it is in direct line with the gear shift lever (the car that the automatic). If you have big hands or fingers, the space is tight/close between shifter and toggle.

    Seats: I found (and others at the show made the same comment) that if you are a shorter person (under 5’7″) the new seats are not as comfortable as previous models. The new thigh bolsters seem to make it uncomfortable for shorter persons. The bolster also slides in and out by hand quite easily, wondering if during aggressive driving or otherwise they would change position too easy – don’t know.

    The material was nice and the side bolsters on the sports seats were comfortable and supporting (this car had cloth seats).

    Door locks and window up/down switches on door: The door locks switch (now part of door open handle) is good. Mini having moved it from a center toggle to the door is actually ok. The window switch is another story. They are “rocker” type switches and feel cheap. They look chrome plated but the way they move and feel, I could see them break. Was not impressed. Rather if Mini kept them as toggle in the center area.

    Rear View Mirror: Why is it that some car Mfg (VW) put all the effort into nice interior design and material and then put in a crappy rear view mirror? So Mini has said the upgrade the interior material and feel yet the put in a light weight (my feeling) small rear view mirror. It is smaller in overall size and thickness than the R56 and thinner than the R50/53. I didn’t care for it.

    The Sports/Eco mode ring around base of gear shifter: I can see problems with this. It feels ok but just didn’t care for it. Would have rather seen two buttons or toggles in the area.

    Headlight controls: I still prefer them on the stalks but notice even US car makers are putting the control selector to the left of the steering wheel below the dash.

    I didn’t get a chance to sit in the back seat so don’t know how it felt (room).

    In my 3 visits to the car during the day I went to the show I did hear a number of people tell the Mini Reps, “This isn’t a Mini anymore” So some people do feel it’s gotten a bit to big. There was one person that said, it was still to small.

    Overall did I like it? Well, it wasn’t as bad as the pictures made it look. I would like the see the non S. Looks wise the car had it’s positives and some things I didn’t like but then I guess all cars do. The real test would be the driving part.

    That’s my quick review. I only got to spend about 2 minutes each time in the car (on my 3 visit – I was able to get about 5 minutes inside car). It is wider, doesn’t seem higher. Longer looking – ahhh, only if it was placed next to the 1st Gen Mini would you really be able to see the difference.

    Oh and sorry for any typos.

    • http://martin.newham.ws/ mart.

      Thanks, nice little review.

    • RacerX_MINI

      Ooooooo, I have yet to see the cloth interior! How was it? Was it solid color or patterned. I saw on the UK site that there is a plaid, GTI-like cloth interior option, that would be cool.

      • R.O

        The cloth sport seats in the display care were one color (Black). For cloth it was nice and had a nice feel. I’m not a fan of cloth, I prefer leather or leatherette but this cloth was good.

    • Jason

      For me at least, the smaller rear view mirror will be a blessing. I always felt like the one in the R56 was enormous and blocked quite a bit of my view.

      • R.O

        True. The R56 RVM was “huge”. It’s not so much the size on the F56 but more that it’s cheap feeling and material wise could be better. Should have been closer to the R50/53. The F56 is a bigger and wide car, so a decent RVW would have been nice. Just think Mini dropped on the ball for this piece.

        • BimmerFile_Michael

          I think that many people look at this as one thing when it really is another.

          Each item of future generations of car are being evaluated for functionality, look, quality, cost per unit and weight. Is a large heavy, expensive mirror something that people need or is saving weight and cost there for benefit of adjustable (which lock in place) thigh bolsters more important?

          I’d rather the bolsters as I touch the mirror once and never move it again (excluding track days).

          The engineers and designers are looking to shave weight anywhere they can without globally compromising the product.

          I remember when the first metal coated plastic bits (Galvanic) started making their way into BMWs and people complained they would break or cheapened it all up- it shaved 30 something pounds from the interior, lessened the end price and never had an issue with breaking…. that was many generations of these products ago and things are even stronger, lighter and better looking..

          It is all subjective though.

  • Frank Granados

    We are among one of the 330 deliveries of new MINI Clubman vehicles during November. Still, it seems it was a dismal month for the MINI brand despite the 0% finance deals and lease incentives (Which expired Dec 2nd). With the exception of the 1, 3/4 series and X1, sales of more expensive premium BMW models are also in the tatters. I hope there is some soul searching going on at BMW NA headquarters as we speak…

  • Russell Vague

    Could it be that buyers are waiting for the 2014 model, particularly with the hopes that quality will be better along with the model makeover?

    • RacerX_MINI

      I have talked with a lot of folks who are holding out and waiting, especially after seeing the new F56 in the flesh at the LA Auto Show. Interior quality and materials jump a few notches and as much as there have been complaints about the exterior (same thing happened in late 2006 with the impending R56), it is definitely more attractive in person. More and more people are doing research and know that the new engine series are BMW and the Prince engines have left a bitter taste in a lot of current MINI owner’s mouths.

  • Dr Obnxs

    Hmmmm…… Couple of data points…. In one of the latest car rags, the GP was included in a compare of drivers cars. It was panned massively. In the latest Rondel, the MINI column talked about how wonderful the GP is, but when it came to the price, it was just too expensive compared to what else was out there. MINIs marketing message is confused a bit right now, I think. That shows up in the sales numbers. The delta between what MINI is and what you can get elsewhere is much smaller than it was, and that is showing up in the numbers too. Let’s hope that this isn’t the norm, but is just a bad month….

    • http://bridger.us/ Gabriel Bridger

      Rondel vs Evo. Knowing the writers at both I’d choose Evo. A thousand times over.

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