More good press for MINI’s latest drop-top. Here’s an excerpt:

>As with the Mk1 and Mk2 hatchback, you’ll have to concentrate hard to be able to tell new from old, although if you look closely, you’ll see that the new convertible is larger, plumper, and with higher body sides and gentler curves.

>This combines to make the Mk2 drop-top better looking than the original version it replaces, especially now that the rear rollover protection bars are hidden inside the car — only to be activated in an emergency. With those awkwardly high-set rear hoops banished, it no longer has the look of a gigantic pram.

>There’s more good news with the hood. When retracted, it doesn’t hang clumsily over the edge, as with the old car, instead settling into a neat concertina at the car’s rear. It retracts in 15 seconds via a button above the driver’s head, can be opened while driving at up to 20mph, and has two settings — partially open “sunroof” and full convertible mode.

>To drive, the Mk2 feels a good deal sturdier: put a few miles under the wheels of the old car and it would often rattle in a distinctly non-premium fashion that must have made the bosses of BMW’s warranty department shiver. Better still, there’s precious little wind noise or buffeting with the roof open.

+ Mini Cooper S convertible / London Times