New Mini set to make its mark on the world

Yorkshire Post - Motoring - - NEWS -

The lat­est Mini goes on sale next Satur­day. The Coun­try­man is the first Mini with four side doors, five seats and the op­tion of the all-wheel-drive ALL4 ver­sion. It is the first Mini built abroad (by Steyr in Aus­tria).

It also marks a re­turn to the World Rally Cham­pi­onship in 2011, hop­ing to match the suc­cess of the orig­i­nal Mini in the 1960s.

This year’s al­lo­ca­tion of the Coun­try­man is al­ready sold out. Prices start at £16,000.

It is the biggest Mini we have seen, mea­sur­ing 161 inches long – that’s nearly 15 inches longer than the Mini hatch­back. It is four inches wider and six inches taller. The ground clear­ance is slightly higher (less than half-an-inch).

At launch, the Coun­try­man range is three petrol mod­els – One, Cooper and Cooper S – and two diesel mod­els – One D and Cooper D – as well as two ALL4 all-wheel-drive mod­els, the Cooper D ALL4 and Cooper S ALL4.

The petrol en­gines are the new 1.6 litre four cylin­der al­ready an­nounced for the Hatch, Con­vert­ible and Club­man mod­els launched in spring. The diesel is an all­new BMW 1.6 turbo.

Sam­ple model: The One has a 98bhp en­gine giv­ing 0-62mph in 11.9 sec­onds, 47.1mpg, 139g/km of CO2 and costs £16,000. Top of the range is the Cooper S ALL4, at £22,030. With 184bhp, it records 0-62 in 7.9 sec­onds, 42.2mpg and 157g/km CO2.

The most eco­nom­i­cal are the One D and Cooper D, each record­ing 67.3mpg and 115g/km. Gears are six speeds, with a six speed auto avail­able on all petrol mod­els.

Pro­drive is de­vel­op­ing the WRC ver­sion for the Su­per 2000 se­ries for 4x4 cars with 1.6 turbo en­gines. Test­ing starts soon, with se­lected events next year.

DOOR TO DOOR: The new Mini Coun­try­man.

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