MINI is largely credited with bringing the first premium compact car to America, proving that high quality and small packaging were not necessarily mutually exclusive concepts. Over-engineered with a well put-together feel, all the Coopers in the MINI lineup are praised for their agility and fun-to-drive factor and all of that returns for 2013.
The MINI comes as a 2-door hardtop, a longer Clubman wagon and as a convertible. The base powertrain across the range is a normally aspirated 1.6L 121-hp 4-cylinder engine. Transmission options include either a standard 6-speed Getrag manual or a 6-speed automatic with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters.
The Cooper S adds an additional level of performance to the MINI, again available across the range. The S is powered by a 181-hp turbocharged version of the 1.6L four. Six speeds are standard on S models in either the standard manual or an available automatic. S models also feature 16-inch alloys and sport-tuned suspension for increased agility and responsiveness.
The exciting 208-hp turbocharged 4-cylinder of the John Cooper Works model is also available in Coupe, Convertible and Clubman form. The 6-speed manual is the only transmission available. The JCW adds 17-inch alloys, an even more aggressive suspension package and big, heavy-duty brakes. Also included in the package are stability and traction control, special exterior and interior appointments and supportive sport seats.
MINIs are almost endlessly customizable, with a broad palette of exterior and interior color combinations and several cockpit materials. They are also available with a long list of options packages, which add features like an electric sunroof with twin glass front and back, automatic air conditioning, fog lamps, auto rain-sensing wipers as and heated seats and mirrors.
All MINI Coopers come standard with six air bags, antilock brakes, electronic brakeforce distribution and brake control and daytime running lamps.
The MINI cooper is mostly unchanged for 2013, save for a few details. The base price has been given a modest bump with models costing about $200 dollars more than last year and Bluetooth connectivity is now standard across all model ranges. The high performance John Cooper Works version also receives a few changes to its engine, providing a slight bump in power.