Mini Countryman Manufacturer Magna Steyr Production 2010-present Assembly Graz, Austria Class Mini SUV Body style 5-door SUV Layout Front engine, front-wheel drive / four-wheel drive Engine Transmission 6-speed automatic
Wheelbase 2,595 mm (102.2 in) Length 4,097 mm (161.3 in)
Cooper S: 4,110 mm (161.8 in)
Width 1,996 mm (78.6 in) Height 1,561 mm (61.5 in)
The Mini Countryman is a crossover SUV car, and is the first such car to be launched under the Mini marque by BMW. The car was announced in January 2010, and formally launched at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show as the first Mini crossover SUV, and the first 5-door model. It is offered with a choice of two or four wheel drive (known as ALL4), and with 1.6 L petrol or diesel and 2.0 L diesel four-cylinder engines in various states of tune. Sales started in September 2010 as a 2011 model-year vehicle.
The Countryman has a longer wheelbase, more interior room, and higher ground clearance than the Clubman. It uses the same engines as the Mini Hatch/Clubman range, but with an optional all-wheel-drive powertrain (dubbed "ALL4") to allow minimal off-road and rugged terrain driving. A 6-speed manual transmission is standard on all models, with automatic transmission available on all petrol and diesel models except the 90 bhp One D.
The model derivatives follow a similar pattern to the Mini Hatch, with a choice of One/One D, Cooper/Cooper D and Cooper S/Cooper SD derivatives. Countryman One is available with the 1.6 L petrol 98 bhp (73 kW; 99 PS) engine or as the One D with a 1.6 L 90 bhp (67 kW; 91 PS) diesel engine. The Cooper petrol 121 bhp (90 kW; 123 PS) and the Cooper D 112 bhp (84 kW; 114 PS), the Cooper S petrol 184 bhp (137 kW; 187 PS) and the Cooper SD diesel producing 143 bhp (107 kW; 145 PS). The availability of models varies between markets, with the USA and Russia not taking the One versions or any diesel powered models. The All4 all-wheel-drive option is available on variable models, again depending on the country.
In November 2010 Euro NCAP awarded the Countryman a 5-star crash rating.
Euro NCAP test results Mini Countryman (2011) Test Points % Overall: Adult occupant: 30 84% Child occupant: 41 83% Pedestrian: 23 63% Safety assist: 5 71%
Unlike the normal Mini range, the Countryman is not manufactured in Oxford, England, but in Austria by Magna Steyr, making it the first of the BMW era Minis to be manufactured entirely outside the UK.
On 27 July 2010 Mini announced plans to enter the World Rally Championship. The Countryman is the chosen donor model and Prodrive have been selected to prepare the Mini Countryman WRC. The factory team had its first test outing of the 2011 WRC season at the 2011 Rally d'Italia Sardegna, before taking on the full calendar in 2012.
Marketing and reception
In June, with preparation for the launch of the Countryman, Mini invited grammy award winner and country/pop singer Michelle Branch and urban pop producer Timbaland to collaborate on a new advertisement effort. Their new song, "Getaway", focuses on the idea of "urban meets country", and the music video premiered on June 8, 2010.
Pulitzer Prize winning automotive journalist Dan Neil suggested the Countryman had jumped the shark – that is to say the car pushed the Mini ethos beyond relevance, marking the zenith of popularity and the start of decline. Neil suggested that by making a vehicle that is longer, wider and taller, the company had forsaken the inner logic of the brand: excellent handling in a tiny size. In a March 2011 review titled What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW? , Neil wrote "with the Countryman, tiny sharks have been jumped."
- ^ "MINI Countryman - official!". Auto Express. 2010-01-20. http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/news/autoexpressnews/247405/mini_countryman_official.html. Retrieved 2011-02-02.
- ^ "The MINI Countryman, Fun has no Limits". Automoblog.net. http://www.automoblog.net/2010/01/21/the-mini-countryman-fun-has-no-limits/.
- ^ "MINI Countryman granted 5-star crash rating". AUSmotive.com. 2010-11-25. http://www.ausmotive.com/2010/11/26/mini-countryman-granted-5-star-crash-rating.html. Retrieved 2010-11-25.
- ^ "Euro NCAP results for Mini Countryman". euroncap.com. 2011. http://www.euroncap.com/files/418_datasheet.pdf.
- ^ Autocar roadtest Mini Countryman 1.6 Cooper D ALL4
- ^ "MINI confirms WRC entry from 2011". AUSmotive.com. http://www.ausmotive.com/2010/07/27/mini-confirms-wrc-entry-from-2011.html.
- ^ "What Part of 'Mini' Did You Not Grasp, BMW?". The Wall Street Journal, March 4, 2011, Dan Neil. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704615504576172832123217962.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_editorsPicks_2.
Mini vehicle timeline 1959–present Model 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Two-door hatch Mk I Mk II Mk III-Mk VII Hatch/Hardtop
Cooper Mk I Cooper Mk II Cooper RSP Cooper Cooper
Cooper S Mk I Cooper S Mk II Cooper S Mk III Cooper S ERA Cooper S
Innocenti Cooper Cooper 1300 Authi Mk II Cooper 1300 Clubman Clubman & 1275GT Moke Moke (UK) Moke (Australia) Moke (Portugal) Pickup Mini Pickup Mini 95 Van Mini Van Mini 95 Estate|Mini MPV Traveller & Countryman Clubman Cabrio Rover Cabrio Convertible
Crossover Countryman Engines: A-Series engine · Tritec engine · Prince engine
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