When you first look at the F66 in person it feels eerily familiar. That’s because it’s heavily based on the F56 which we’ve known since 2014. But how does it look in real-world photos and hands-on? Let’s take a look.

MINI has pushed the headlights forward and made them slightly more upward. Forget everything else you think you know about the new F66 Cooper, this subtle change really makes a difference. It means that this car feels more upright and a little closer to the R50 and R56. It also marks this car out as different than the sleeker J01 MINI Cooper EV.

Even though MINI made the decision to heavily revise the F56 rather than to create an entirely new car, there’s almost nothing that the designers left untouched. The exterior design is evolved to match the J01 MINI Cooper with the goal to make them look identical to the casual observer. MINI’s hope is that a potential buyer would be choosing ICE versus EV without styling differences to muddy the waters. 

MINI designers have applied the minimal design language we’ve seen on the J01 MINI Cooper by eliminating all non-functional vents, scoops and design elements. This has resulted in the F66 looking more elegant and minimal than it’s predecessor and (in our opinion) closer to the original aesthetic of the classic Mini.

There’s also a revised name to go along with an entirely refreshed car; MINI Cooper C as well as the more familiar MINI Cooper S. What’s the “C” stand for? According to MINI it’s short for “Core”. The “C” and “S” model denotations will apply to all petrol powered MINIs while we’ll see “E” and “SE” on all electric models. 

Performance Upgrades for the F66 MINI Cooper C & Cooper S 

MINI has upped the ante in terms of power with both models. The F56 Cooper is getting a 14% power upgrade going from 134 hp to 156 hp in the F66 Cooper C. This change takes the C from 0-62 mph (0 to 100 km/h) in 7.7 seconds.

ModelF56 CooperF56 Cooper SF66 Cooper CF66 Cooper S
Power134 hp189 hp156 hp 204 hp
Torque162 lb-ft/1480 rpm206 lb-ft/1350 rpm 170 lb-ft/1,480 rpm221 lb-ft
TransmissionManual/DCTManual/DCT7 speed DCT7 speed DCT

The more powerful F66 Cooper S gets a less dramatic 7.4% horsepower boost from 189 to 204 hp but sees a significant torque increase to 221 lb-ft. This gets the new F66 Cooper S to 62 mph in 6.6 seconds (60 in 6.3 seconds). And keep in mind these are both likely a conservative numbers knowing how BMW calculates figures. 

Future Petrol Powered MINI Cooper Models

As with the F56, the F66 will spawn two other variants; the five door hatch (F65) and convertible (F67).

F66 MINI Cooper (three door)F65 MINI Cooper (five door)F67 MINI Cooper Convertible
Cooper C 2-door hardtop (F66)Cooper C 4-door hardtop (F65)Cooper C Convertible (F67)
Cooper S 2-door hardtop (F66)Cooper S 4-door hardtop (F65)Cooper S Convertible (F67)
Cooper JCW 2-door hardtop (F66)Cooper JCW Convertible (ICE)

The F56 vs the F66 – subtle differences abound

The F56 vs the F66 The Surprising Differences

While the F66 is based on the F56, the dimensions aren’t identical likely due to styling and even an few engineering changes. For instance the F56 has a length of 3863mm vs 3876mm for the new F66. The reason is the revised front and rear bumper design. But more interesting is the height change. The F56 is 1414mm vs the F66 which is higher at 1432mm. This is due to MINI increasing the standard wheel size of the Cooper from 15? to 16? wheels while increasing the tire size slightly as well.

But most interesting is the width change. The F56 Cooper has a width of 1727 mm vs the F66 which is wider at 1744mm (both without mirrors). That 17mm difference may not sound like much but BMW and MINI don’t typically increase the width of a car solely because of aesthetics. This change is due to wider wheels and tires (205mm to 215mm) that allow for a more concave wheel design on the Cooper S and JCW (which we’ll see later this year).

ModelF56 CooperF56 Cooper SF66 Cooper CF66 Cooper S
Length (mm/in)3863mm / 152.1 in3863mm / 152.1 in3876mm / 152.6 in3876mm / 152.6 in
Height (mm/in)1414mm / 55.66 in1414mm / 55.66 in1432mm / 56.4 in1432mm / 56.4 in
Wheelbase (mm/in)2495mm / 98.23 in2495mm / 98.23 in2495mm / 98.23 in2495mm / 98.23 in
Curb weight (kg/lbs)1256kg / 2,769 lbs1289kg / 2,841 lbs1260kg / 2,778 lbs1285kg / 2,832 lbs

The MINI Cooper Manual Is Eliminated

As the F56 production ended over 50% of JCW hardtops sold in the US were equipped with the manual transmission. So this change is a big one for some markets and certain models. But the economic realities of complying with European legislation have forced MINI’s hand which means the F66 will have only one transmission across the line-up. That transmission is the familiar dual clutch 7 speed with some small refinements. Let’s hope that adds up to quick shift times.

The move to replace the manual is all about the costs associated with meeting European emissions standards. While North America doesn’t have the same requirements, the case couldn’t be made due to investment required vs the expected sales. Even with a 50% take rate on the JCW for instance, that quantity can’t pay of the costs associated with further developing and/or maintaining the option.

Making this change even more dramatic is MINI’s new dash mounted gear selector. Designers have replaced the center console mounted gear lever with a small dash mounted toggle. The rational is logical as the design simplifies the process of selecting park, reverse or drive while freeing up interior space for storage, screens or other functionality. More importantly MINI still offers wheel mounted paddles for manual control of the DCT. Read our first impressions of this new shift lever here.

The F66 2025 MINI Cooper Model Range 

Produced in Oxford, the F66 will take over as the F56 ends production in February of 2024. That means we’ll see the first F66 MINI Coopers roll off the line next March as the plant begins it’s pivots into a new generation of MINIs.

The F66 MINI Cooper FamilyDrivetrainStart of Production
F66 MINI Cooper155 HP (Petrol)03/2024
F66 MINI Cooper S200 HP (Petrol)03/2024
F66 MINI Cooper JCW231 HP (Petrol)11/2024
F65 MINI Cooper 5 Door155 HP (Petrol)07/2024
F65 MINI Cooper S 5 Door200 HP (Petrol)07/2024
F67 MINI Cooper Convertible155 HP (Petrol)11/2024
F67 MINI Cooper S Convertible200 HP (Petrol)11/2024 
F67 MINI Cooper JCW Convertible231 HP (Petrol)03/2025*
* unconfirmed

As you can see above the changeover will happen in three phases. The first is the iconic two door Cooper which is be available at launch in Cooper and Cooper S models (the Cooper C Comes to the US in the fall). Next will be the five door F65 MINI Cooper launch in both Cooper and Cooper S models. Finally the brand will launch its last F66 variant, the F67 convertible in Cooper and Cooper S models. We believe the JCW F67 will either launch simultaneously or follow in March of 2025.

The F66 Cooper JCW

The highly anticipated F66 MINI Cooper JCW will likely launch this fall and begin production in November.

Head over to our first hands-on experience with the all new F66 MINI Cooper if you want to hear our initial impressions. And make sure to let us know what you think of MINI’s last ever ICE powered Cooper in the comments.

2025 F66 MINI Cooper S Gallery