Update: 2014 MINI Cooper Countryman ALL4 S

So, I’ve had my MINI for a little while now and I thought I’d write up a little review.

First off, let’s talk about some of the bad things.  These are pretty inconsequential really, but they are bugging the heck out me.  First of all the USB player is confusing the heck out of me.  For some reason, I can’t get it to just play all the songs in one directory.  It always seems to be missing some of the songs I want to hear.  It’s frustrating when you put a lot of work into a driving list and you can’t hear half or more of them!

Next, if I push the Phone button, you’d think it would take you to the phone section so that you can select a person to call, right?  Nope, it dials the last number you dialed!  Same as the phone button on the steering wheel.  To get into the dialing application I’ve had to press MODE then switch to PHONE and THEN look someone up.  By their last name?  NOPE!  By their first name.  It’s all very confusing.

Next, it’s the size of the buttons on the radio.  You have to have tiny fingers to make most of them work.  Heaven forbid I’m wearing gloves or something!  There’s no way I’ll be able to work them with the mittens I wear.

Then there’s the inability for it to remember my settings.  When I put on Sport mode, I’d expect it to remember that for next time.  The same things with the Driving lights!  When I turn something on, I want it on damn it.  I expected there to be some type of option so that if I had it set, it would work intelligently.

With the negative things there comes some great things.  I love the handling on this little car.  While it’s not the same as the handling on my previous MINI Cooper S, it still handles well enough that I am ok trading what I did.  I traded the small quick handling MINI for a larger, 4 door, all wheel drive, quick MINI.  I can live with that, and I can feel much more confident in the winters.  That’s not something I ever had in the other MINI where something would fall off every winter.

The turbo!  I never thought I would be a fan of turbo charged cars, but I’m quickly changing my tune.  While I loved the instant power of my super charger, the turbo really holds its own against vehicles.  It gets to where I don’t realize how fast I’m going because the turbo has kicked in and the ride is so smooth.

I forgot to bring that up!  The ride is silky smooth.  I don’t think I’d want to change it for a lower or higher ride.  At least not yet.  I could see possibly raising it up an inch or two to allow me to put more aggressive tires under the rims but for now, I’m pretty happy.

I’ve only changed some of the cosmetic things on the car, for now, however I see some nice changes happening in the future.  Some more cosmetic changes of course, and some power changes as well.  I think an exhaust will do nicely as an intake and possibly some other goodies.  I haven’t completely made up my mind.

The verdict is that while I will get used to the minor cons of the car, the pros outweigh them.  I’ll give more updates as I hit more milestones with my MINI.

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