Keep­ing it in the fam­ily

Finweek English Edition - - CONTENTS -

the MINI has long en­deared it­self to those who make this car their own. The lit­tle Bri­tish run-around was so pop­u­lar af­ter its launch in 1959, that a num­ber of other de­riv­a­tives were in­tro­duced that would not re­quire MINI lovers to exit the brand when their space re­quire­ments in­creased.

A cool, cult car it was and still is, but first pro­duc­tion MI­NIs were real rat­tle-traps and, hav­ing lit­tle cabin in­su­la­tion, were pretty noisy. Not that that wor­ried MINI lovers. They were, af­ter all, such fun, quirky lit­tle cars to drive.

Rat­tles and noise are a thing of the past and now within the fold of the Ger­man car man­u­fac­turer BMW, the build-qual­ity on both the Con­vert­ible and Club­man is mas­ter­ful.

The MINI Cooper Con­vert­ible

The only premium con­vert­ible in the small car seg­ment, the 2-door con­vert­ible is the quin­tes­sen­tial MINI for mem­bers of the MINI cult club and open-top driv­ing en­thu­si­asts.

The lit­tle car looks smash­ing and is sure to get many an en­vi­ous look, sport­ing clas­sic MINI de­sign fea­tures that in­clude cir­cu­lar head­lamps, with chrome sur­rounds and hexag­o­nal ra­di­a­tor grille. It’s a good size larger than the revered orig­i­nal, but BMW has not de­vi­ated much from the orig­i­nal her­itage, re­tain­ing the fun­da­men­tal char­ac­ter that makes MINI so much of a cult car.

Just about ev­ery­thing in the sporty wellap­pointed cabin gets the green light, though a slightly smaller steer­ing wheel might lend more ca­chet. Seat­ing er­gonomics are top notch, the cabin is roomier than its pre­de­ces­sor and, while it is a two-seater with the soft-top down, it can ac­com­mo­date four with the top up.

Sporty-in­spired cir­cu­lar in­stru­men­ta­tion with op­tional LED light­ing dis­play and a cen­tral in­stru­ment screen mark the wellap­pointed cock­pit with its high-qual­ity ma­te­ri­als. Com­plete con­nected in-car in­fo­tain­ment, Head-Up Dis­play, Park­ing and Driv­ing as­sis­tant with cam­era-based ac­tive cruise con­trol, col­li­sion and pedes­trian warn­ing form some of the stan­dard fea­tures.

The MINI Con­vert­ible drives like a premium, sporty, open-top; far, far more re­fined than early MI­NIs, but still fun. The car han­dles well through the turns, the stiff sus­pen­sion pro­vid­ing plenty of road feel and greater driver in­volve­ment. And there is less flex than one might ex­pect from an

[It] drives like a premium, sporty, open-top; far, far more re­fined than early MI­NIs, but still fun.

The rear view is com­pro­mised with the top down.

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