MINI countryman drivers? Opinions, thoughts or warnings?

This spring it will be time to gird our loins and look at a new or slightly used car. Mrs. LeBeef has expressed an interest in the MINI Countryman. Anybody here have one? would you buy it again? I’ve been reading Edmunds and KBB, and the most damning thing I have found is the cost of repairs and maintenance.

Tell me your stories of thrills and heartbreak.

My opinion is that MINI Countryman drivers are petty, vengeful people and should be avoided at all costs.


They’re ugly as fuck. I drove a friend’s for five minutes once so I am qualified to opine.

According to this, it gets 25 mpg in the city, 30 on the highway, and you have to feed it premium fuel.

Have you reviewed reliability reports and consumer satisfaction surveys on the MINI vehicles? (It’s a rhetorical question; if you had, you wouldn’t be considering a MINI.)

I’ve known half a dozen people who have owned various MINIs (although not the Countryman model) and they have all required major repairs. MINI dealers have a tendency to classify many repairs as not covered by warranty even when they obviously should be, e.g. clutch replacement within 30-40k miles due to “hard use” even within the 50k powertrain warranty period. They tend to have a lot of other cosmetic and functional defects placing them in about the same level of build quality as a 1980s era Pontiac.

Unless you are doing rally racing (where you expect to replace powertrain components on a regular basis and don’t care about interior build quality) you do not want a MINI of any flavor.


MINI’s follow the European car formula. Parts and service are not so much expensive as they are godawful expensive, and some of the engineering is too clever by half (i.e., needlessly complex with more emphasis on gee-whiz! than on reliability). But they are cute.

My MINI Cooper will be six years old in May. No major repairs yet. It’s the only car I’ve ever owned that I want to keep until it fall apart. However, if something happens to it, I’ll look at other small car options.

I have read most of the maintenance and customer satisfaction results for MINIs, which is why I asked for personal opinions, anecdotes, and stories.

But thanks for the suggestion.