Having had my MINI for almost two years sometimes I forget the anticipation of waiting, and the excitement of planning those first modifications. The ability to make a car your own is one of the real joys of ownership and having a blank canvas like the MINI makes this an opportunity like none other.

So for the benefit of new or soon to be MINI owners out there I thought I'd list a top five non-performance mods and that really enhance the enjoyment of your MINI. These shouldn't be the last word however – if you have further ideas feel free to share them in our comments section. (each mod is ranked on a 1-5 scale in terms of difficulty with 1 being easiest and 5 being most difficult). So without further delay…

5. The AUX port or the ICE-LINK iPod adapter. While this doesn't apply to everyone, if you have an iPod or another hard drive based music player I highly recommend it. Get the ICE-Link if you want the best and/or would use it constantly, get the AUX input if it's an occasional luxury. (3)

4. Ditch the Runflats: On a Cooper they're meaningless and they do nothing but spoil the ride and worsen performance with their weight and stiffness. They do the same on an MCS but they are somewhat needed due to there being no spare. But then again you can always carry a cell phone 🙂 (4)

3. Rubber Mats/Cloth Mats: I'd recommend Rubber for versatility. See if your dealer can throw these in as part of the initial deal. Some will. (1)

2. Brakelight mod. Whether you do it in conjunction with rear foglights or not it's an incredibly useful and easy mod. (available on 2002-2004 MINIs.) (2)

1. Parcel Shelf: cheap, easy to install, and a huge increase in interior storage. Unlike other additional storage options, with the Parcel Shelf, you get the satisfaction of keeping the interior completely OEM as it's a standard feature on all MINIs outside North America. (2)

Once you've got these out of the way you'll want to start work on your schedule of performance mods. Of course once the schedule is worked out comes the hardest part – talking either your significant other, or yourself into all of them!

Again, feel free to share your own ideas in the comments section.