Intro: Retro styling, tight handling, and fuel-efficient yet potent powerplants make the Mini Cooper subcompact hatchback a hit with those seeking versatility and performance in a small and sporty package.
The 2010 Mini Cooper offers a selection of models ranging from nimble runabout to focused performance machine. Trims for the 4-passenger Cooper are Base, the S model, and the John Cooper Works. Our test Cooper S came with black racing stripes, fog lights, and available aerodynamic body kit. 16-inch alloy wheels are standard; with 17-inch alloys an available option.
Performance: The Base Mini Cooper is powered by a 1.6-liter inline-4 that puts out 118 horsepower and 114 pound feet of torque. Our Mini Cooper S came with a turbocharged version of that engine that generates 172 horsepower and 177 pound feet of torque. The 1.6-liter turbo in the John Cooper Works puts out 208 horsepower and 192 pound feet of torque. All models send power to the front wheels through a standard 6-speed manual transmission, while a 6-speed automatic with paddle shifters is available on the Base and S models.
Fuel Economy: Here are the highest and lowest EPA estimates for fuel economy:
Features: Inside, the driver is treated to a purist's cockpit; Steering wheel controls only if you want them and the tachometer is the only gauge in front of you. The speedometer resides in the center stack along with the sound system controls.
Our test model came clad in black leather seating, with optional heated front seats and standard 50/50 split-fold rear seats. With the back seats down, the Mini Cooper offers 24 cubic feet of cargo space. The available dual panel sunroof ensures that both rows have panoramic views.
Safety: Standard safety equipment on the Mini Cooper includes 4-wheel antilock disc brakes, traction control, dynamic stability control, and a full array of front and side curtain airbags.
Pricing/Warranty: Base MSRP for the 2010 Mini Cooper is $18,800. A rang topping John Cooper Works model starts at $28,800. The Mini Cooper is backed by a 4-year, 50,000-mile basic warranty.
Summary: The 2010 MINI Cooper hardtop delivers a winning subcompact formula by combining unique iconic styling and agile driving dynamics, in a fresh and sporty hatchback.