The model year 2012 is here and MINI USA has a number of changes and refinements that are well worth noting for anyone looking at buying a MINI. Ok it’s actually more exciting than that. Let me start over. The 2012 MINI is simply the best R55 R56 or R57 produced to date. Why? The changes have either been years in the making (JCW additions) or carefully crafted additions based on your feedback. Let’s take a look at the details including options, packages, MINI Yours and JCW (after the break).

Some of the biggest changes are several color combination restrictions being liftedallowing you to order some pretty interesting combos. Want a Spice Orange car with the Classic Green Lounge Leather and Hot Chocolate Color Line? Easy. Just order it and wait for mouths to drop (and foreheads to be slapped).

New or Changes 2012 Options

R56 and R57 Hatch and Convertible

– Horizon Blue (A93) has been discontinued and will be replaced with Lightning Blue (A63.)

R57 Convertible

– New option 4C9, Interior Surface Pepper White, replaces 318, Interior Surfaces Body Color.

R55 Clubman

– You can now get the lower C-pillars in body color with option 321 for Laser Blue, White Silver, BRG II, Eclipse Gray and Pepper White. The Upper C pillars will always be black with option 321.

R55 and R56 Clubman and Hatch

– New standard wheel for Cooper models is the 15” 7-Hole wheel, replacing the 5-Star Spooler (yes the holey is back!)

R55, R56, R57 and R60

– New option 4NA, is an interior mirror with a digital compass. It requires 319, UGDO.

R55, R56 and R57 Clubman, Hatch and Convertible

– FTGW Cross Check Cloth/Leather in Polar Beige will be now available on all body styles. T9GK Satellite Gray Lounge Leather has been released for all models. FKE1 Carbon Black Cloth/Leather is now released.

MINI USA Package Changes

The big news in packages is that the Convenience Package and Value Package are gone. The Premium Package will now combine the best of what used to be in 2011’s ZPP and ZCV.

Premium Package / Retail

– Anti-theft alarm system / $500
– Comfort Access / $500
– Chrome line interior / $250
– Auto-dimming rearview mirror / $250
– Rain Sensor and Daylight Function / $250
– Automatic Air Conditioning / $500

– Itemized Value / $2,250
– Package Price / $1750
– Discount / 22%

The big change here is that there is no longer a sunroof offered in the package. Instead it will be available as a stand-alone option and will remain at $1,000. In addition, the harman/kardon stereo upgrade is now a part of MINI USA’s newly- created Technology Package. Auto A/C remains and the rest of the items are new to Premium.

According to MINI USA the reason for this new content is to prepare for the upcoming Coupe and Roadster. Within a year MINI will have three products in the lineup that would have required their own dedicated Premium Packages. The idea was to precent confusion and simply the offering to one Premium Pack that would work on all MINI models.

The other new package is Technology Package. The package follows a similar pattern BMW has used for years by packaging up many of the more interesting technology related options in one mammoth kit. With one big addition, it’s all discounted. The package can also be upgraded to option 7L5 for only $750 more, furthering the value.

Technology Package / Retail

– Center armrest / $250
– Park Distance Control (rear) / $500
– Harman-Kardon sound system / $750
– MINI Connected / $1,000
– Itemized Value / $2,000
– Package Price / $1750
– Discount / 22%

Or you could go with option 7L5 MINI Connected with Navigation +$750 / $2,500


MINI JCW for 2012

The JCW Pack that was introduced with 03/2011 builds isn’t changing. However there are some small 2012 details worth mentioning. When you order the JCW Package for a Cooper or Cooper S with manual trans, you get red stitching on the steering wheel, shift lever boot and the parking brake handle boot. When you combine this package with Automatic transmission, you keep the red-stitched steering wheel but cannot get shift paddles. The shift boot and parking brake boot then lose the red stitching.

The big news for the 2012 model year is that John Cooper Works Hardtop and Convertible will comes standard with the JCW aero kit at the factory. However, it will take a bit more time than MINI expected to ensure a perfect integration at Plant Oxford, so the kit will not arrive until November 2011 production. This means that the 2012 John Cooper Works Hardtop and Convertible will not be available for ordering until the November allocation opens.

On the other hand, the John Cooper Works Clubman will not have the JCW Aero kit, so there is no delay in production or ordering the R55 JCW.

MINI Yours

For 2012 MINI Yours is debuting throughout the world. But what does that mean for the US?

It means MINI taking customization to the next level. WIth Yours MINI will be introducing a more premium and very exclusive series of options from upholstery, interior surfaces and an exterior color that can had together in a MINI Yours exterior package, or a la carte. Either way, you’ll need option code 3BY, the MINI Yours side scuttle, before you order anything else. Sounds odd but apparently it’s the one requirement for any MINI Yours options.

MINI Yours interior options include an Instrument panel covered in a smooth two-tone soft-touch leather that has exposed stitching. Then there’s option 4L5 gives you sumptuous Black and Satellite Gray while 4L6 gives you luxurious Black and Polar Beige.

But don’t forget the 2XB; a two-tone leather steering wheel that is probably the best MINI’s ever offered. Unfortunately (or fortunately for you manual snobs) it’s not available with shift paddles.

Then there’s “Soda”. A line of MINI Yours patterns that will be part of the new options. On the outside, the new 17” wheel, 2GE, MINI Yours 17” alloy wheel, can be had on all Cooper and Cooper S models. The MINI Yours Soda mirror caps (3A6) have a three-dimensional effect done solely via printing. On the MINI Yours Soda Lounge Leather (T2GK) the unique Soda pattern appears on the sides of the backrests and headrests. A contrasting black leather stripes runs down the middle of the seats as well and these are offset with a premium piping. Expect pricing to be slightly more than that of the “regular” Lounge Leather.

2012 Pricing

MINI Coupe

MY2011 MY2012
Cooper NA $22,000
Cooper S  NA $25,300
John Cooper Works  NA $31,900 (aerokit included)
MINI Hatch    
Cooper $20,100 $20,200
Cooper S  $23,700 $23,800
John Cooper Works  $29,800 $30,600 (aerokit included)
MINI Clubman

Cooper $21,800 $21,900
Cooper S $25,500  $25,600
John Cooper Works $32,000 $32,100
MINI Countryman    
Cooper $22,350 $22,450
Cooper S $25,950 $26,050
Cooper S ALL4 $27,650 $27,750

MINI Countryman Changes for 2012? Look for that info shortly…