New en­gine and more per­son­al­i­sa­tion

Hatch­back and drop-top get a new en­try-level en­gine, as well as more stan­dard equip­ment and per­son­al­i­sa­tion op­tions On sale March Price from £15,000 (est)

What Car? - - Contents - Dar­ren Moss Dar­ren.moss@hay­mar­ket.com

MINI’S HATCH­BACK IS one of our favourite small cars, and while we rec­om­mend ri­vals such as the Seat Ibiza and Volk­swa­gen Polo in most cases, there’s still plenty to love about this stylish hatch­back and its con­vert­ible sib­ling. It’s proved a pop­u­lar choice with Bri­tish buy­ers, too, with more than 47,500 cars sold last year.

Since the Mini trades so heav­ily on its looks, only sub­tle changes have been made to dif­fer­en­ti­ate this facelifted model. Most ob­vi­ous are the new stan­dard LED lights at the front and rear.adap­tive head­lights – which au­to­mat­i­cally adjust their bright­ness de­pend­ing on road con­di­tions and dip when an on­com­ing car is de­tected – are on the op­tions list for the rst time.

The re­freshed Mini comes in three new colours, plus there’s a wider range of de­sign op­tions for own­ers to per­son­alise their cars. This in­cludes the abil­ity to de­sign your own ex­te­rior and in­te­rior trim in­lays with text or sim­ple im­ages that are then 3D-printed and tted to the car.

Most of the Mini’s cur­rent en­gine op­tions have been car­ried over for the hatch­back, with the ex­cep­tion of the Mini One’s 1.2-litre petrol, which has been re­placed with a new three-cylin­der 1.5.This en­try-level Mini has 101bhp and can get from 0-62mph in 10.1sec. It’s also the most ef cient op­tion in the line-up, re­turn­ing an of cial av­er­age of 57.6mpg, with CO2 emis­sions of as low as 111g/km.

Else­where, there’s the ex­ist­ing 1.5 and 2.0 petrol en­gines in the Cooper and Cooper S re­spec­tively. With 228bhp, the range-top­ping three-door John Cooper Works can cover the 0-62mph sprint in 6.3sec. In the Mini Con­vert­ible, the en­gine line-up is slimmed down to the Cooper and Cooper S petrol vari­ants, plus the John Cooper Works. All Mi­nis come with a six-speed man­ual gear­box as stan­dard, while a new seven-speed du­al­clutch au­to­matic is of­fered on most mod­els.

Stan­dard equip­ment on the hatch­back and con­vert­ible ranges now in­cludes steer­ing wheel-mounted con­trols and an up­dated 6.5in colour in­fo­tain­ment screen with Blue­tooth.

Mini’s pop­u­lar Pep­per and Chili op­tion packs also get ex­tra kit, with the Pep­per Pack fea­tur­ing 15in al­loy wheels, au­to­matic head­lights, cli­mate con­trol and rear park­ing sen­sors.the Chili Pack, mean­while, brings 17in al­loys, part-leather up­hol­stery, a sports steer­ing wheel and a new Sport driv­ing mode.

With cur­rent prices start­ing from £14,460 and £15,520 re­spec­tively, the Mini 3dr and 5dr hatch­backs are com­pet­i­tively priced against ri­vals such as the Polo and Audi A1 – but don’t ex­pect to hag­gle the kind of dis­counts you can get on those cars. The Mini Con­vert­ible is more ex­pen­sive than its clos­est ri­vals but holds onto its value very well.

In all three cases, prices for these up­dated mod­els are likely to in­crease by a small amount.we’d ex­pect to see a start­ing price of close to £15,000 for the three-door, ris­ing to around £16,000 for the ve-door and just short of £20,000 for the con­vert­ible.

Mini now al­lows you to de­sign your own trim in­lays

Union Flag tail-lights are now stan­dard on all mod­els

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