To help ease the complexity of dealing with roadside assistance MINI USA is releasing a smartphone application this Thursday. With the roadside assistance program being free (and a great selling point for the car) MINI USA is looking to leverage the application to help get word out and make life easier should make the process easier.
Here’s how it works:
The App will allow you to set up a profile via registering your VIN on the Application. This profile will store your VIN, Model & Model Year. You can also upload a picture of your MINI, give it a nickname & select the color MINI that you have.
You can select a service such as; jump start, tire change, fuel, lock out assistance, tow for mechanical reason, or accident.
Once youâ€™ve selected a service you can hit the call button and you will be connected with Roadside.
The App will then push all of the above data to the roadside rep on the other end of the phone as well as (with your permission by selecting â€œallow current locationâ€) the latitude and longitude of your current location. continued →
According to the IIHS you’ll want to be extra careful to avoid low speed accidents if your a MINI driver. A recent study gave the car a “poor” grade in low speed impacts due to the repair costs. Here’s an excerpt from their report:
Pricey styling decisions: The Mini Cooper is the only car the Institute has tested with a hood that buckled in the front corner test. This is a pricey styling design on the manufacturer’s part, Nolan points out. The minicar’s hood wraps around the front of the car like a fender, so instead of replacing just a fender, the car needed an $810 new hood. Repairs total $2,637 in this test.
The IIHS recently finished its side-impact crash testing of the 2008-2009 MINI Cooper. Below is an extensive look at the testing with both exterior and interior mounted video cameras. Overall the car got an “A” or acceptable rating – not bad for a small car. However when you look closer at the ratings you’ll see the MINI got pretty much all “G” ratings (as high as it gets) except for two categories: rear passenger torso and driver leg categories.
The IIHS has been crashing cars again. We all know the MINI scores well front and rear, but so not hot for side impact.
Mini Cooper results: This minicar was redesigned for the 2007 model year, and it earned a good rating for frontal crash protection in a previous test. New side and rear tests were conducted to assess further design changes made for the most recent models. This minicar earns a good rating for rear protection and an acceptable rating for side protection. Measures recorded on the driver dummy indicate that a fractured pelvis would be possible in a side crash of the same severity, but there’s low risk that other significant injuries would occur to the driver. For the rear passenger, rib fractures and/or internal organ injuries would be possible. ESC is newly standard for the 2009 model year.
The federal government is looking into complaints from some consumers that they have received leg burns from contact with the exhaust pipe in the 2007-’08 Mini Cooper S. The engineering analysis, which is sometimes a precursor to a safety recall, involves up to 20,000 vehicles, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Here’s an excerpt from the complaint report on the NHTSA website:
The office of defects investivation (ODI) opened this investigation based on three consumer complaints on the 2007 model year MINI COOPER S. The complaints reported being burned on their legs by the hot exhaust pipe tip while they were removing cargo items from the rear hatch area of the their vehicles.
No injuries and no recall has been announced yet. Something to keep an eye on. And be careful loading and unloading the boot after you have been driving. Those pipes do get very hot!
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