Story & photos by Randy S. Peregrino
MINI Asia, together with British United Automobiles, recently launched new editions of the three-door, five-door and Cabrio models at the Mini Global City showroom in Taguig City.
With myriad of fashionably refined exterior looks plus technological innovations, the British premium car manufacturer fortifies the known character and appeal of its original models in the premium small car segment. For the most part, enhancements focused on new design accentuations, drive technology innovations and added customization options.
At a glance, that distinct charisma of every Mini model coming from its hallmark circular headlights received enhancements in terms of design and improved illumination. The latest generation LED modules for low and high beam now offer increased brightness with combined LED daytime driving lights and signal lights spawning a circular contour. Even the Mini emblem found on the bonnet, tailgate and steering wheel, central instrument displays and remote control also received a new look inspired by a two-dimensional “flat design,” respectively.
The full-LED taillights, meantime, now project a very British inspiration coming from the Union Jack design. Recreating the striking flag motif was through the light functions structures. The turn indicators and the brake lights are arranged and aligned in such a way that it express a British flag-like illumination. Along with the new adaptive LED headlights, this unique taillight design of the three-door, five-door and Cabrio models clearly articulates the brand’s British origins. Matching all those exterior enhancements are the expanded selection of light alloy wheels wrapped in 205/45 R17 series tires. These two-toned, 17-inch light alloy rim designs are the Propeller Spoke (now available for the Cooper) and the Rail Spoke (for Cooper S).
Interior-wise, there are also enrichments endowed to the new Mini editions. The newly designed three-spoke steering wheel now features multifunction buttons to activate the speed-limiter function, audio and communication controls. You can even choose between the two available options, such as Mini Yours or John Cooper Works for the leather design. The touch-operated audio system with 6.5-inch color screen with Bluetooth connectivity and mobile phone integration also came in standard. Moreover, the control display has an optional Radio Mini Visual Boost and navigation system.
When it comes to the interior individuality, new embellishments include leather finishes, surface materials and color lines being offered. For the pelt materials, there’s the Chester leather trim in Malt Brown, as well as for the color line. In addition, the optional Mini Yours interior style Piano Black is also available with illumination, as well as with the doors and center console, including a rear-lit decorative strip for the instrument panel on the passenger side. Bearing the stylized Union Jack motif, the decorative strip corresponds with same ambient lighting mood selected by the driver included in the Mini Excitement Package.
Under the hood, all standard variants come with a 1.5-liter, three-cylinder petrol engine with Mini Twin Power Turbo Technology and Valvetronic producing 136 hp at 4,500-6,500 rpm and 220 N-m of maximum torque at 4,200 rpm. The S versions, on the other hand, is fitted with a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder petrol engine with Mini Twin Power Turbo Technology and Valvetronic dishing out 192 hp at 5,000-6,000 rpm and 280 N-m of maximum torque at 4,600 rpm. The three-door John Cooper Works version’s 2.0-liter mill, meantime, generates a higher output of 231 hp at 5,200-6,000 rpm and 320 N-m of maximum torque at 4,800 rpm. All these engines are EURO 6-compliant and benefited from an accross the board development on components and lightened engine cover material.
Paired to these performance motors is the new seven-speed Steptronic dual clutch transmission. This new gearbox enables swift gearshifts providing an extremely sporty acceleration without any torque delays. Together with the newly designed electronic gear selector lever and paddle shifters, each gears are maximized to squeeze power in every optimimum engine rev range. Moreso, the new transmission allows the use of coasting function in MID and GREEN mode, as well as in conjunction with the latest generation auto start/stop function, which smartly determines the ideal situation on when to switch off the engine—avoiding ignition shut off on brief stops and during gridlocks.
Of the existing radiant body colors, three new shades were added namely: Emerald Grey metallic, Starlight Blue metallic and Solaris Orange metallic. Prices of each variant are as follow: new Mini Cooper three door (P2.55 million), new Mini Cooper S three door (P3 million), new Mini John Cooper Works three door (P3.85 million), new Mini Cooper five door (P2.65 million), new Mini Cooper S five door (P3.1 million) and new Mini Cooper SD Convertible (P3.35 million).