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Mini reveals new Cooper with petrol power. Image by Mini.

Mini reveals new Cooper with petrol power
Fossil-powered Mini will be offered in basic Cooper C and more powerful Cooper S forms.
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Newer articles featuring 2024 Mini Cooper

2024-05-15: First drive: 2024 Mini Cooper SE

What's all this about?

It’s the new three-door Mini, formerly called the Mini Hatch, but now simply referred to as the Cooper to fall in line with what everyone called it anyway.

Hang on. Wasn't that revealed a while back?

Erm... Yes. But that was the all-singing, all-dancing electric model. This is the normal Cooper, powered by good old petrol.

Right, so this is more about engines than tech or design?

Exactly. The petrol-powered Cooper will be offered in a choice of two basic flavours: the entry-level Cooper C and the more potent Cooper S. The former will get a 156hp three-cylinder petrol engine, while the latter gets a 204hp four-cylinder engine.

Both come with a seven-speed automatic gearbox as standard, but there’s a noticeable difference in performance. Whereas the Cooper C takes a more-than-respectable 7.7 seconds to get from a standstill to 62mph, the Cooper S takes 6.6 seconds to achieve the same feat.

And although there is a difference when it comes to fuel consumption, there isn’t all that much in it. The Cooper C manages 43.5-47.9mpg on the official economy test, while the Cooper S returns between 42.2 and 46.3mpg.

Is that the only difference?

More or less. Externally, the car looks much the same as the electric version, albeit with a proper grille in place of the EV’s plastic panel. And, of course, you get the Union Flag lights at the back and the trim strip stretching across the boot.

Inside, the steering wheel and dashboard are very similar to that of the electric Cooper, complete with the round infotainment screen in the middle, which houses instrument display information, as well as media, navigation and entertainment displays.

However, the car can also be specified with the Mini Experience Modes, which project various illuminated graphics onto the dashboard, allowing what Mini calls “interplay of visual design, ambient lighting and sound design,” and therefore greater personalisation options.

Sounds high-tech...

For sure. Mini has put a Mini Intelligent Personal Assistant in there, too, activated by the phrase “Hey Mini”. That command will bring up an avatar of the “digital Mini companion, Spike,” which all sounds very much like Microsoft Word’s Clippy, from 1996. Whatever, Spike will allow the driver to use their voice to control features including the phone and satellite navigation, among other things.

What’s more, Mini will also allow drivers to use their smartphones as a car key using the Mini app. When the system is activated, the lights will initiate a ‘welcome’ animation when the driver is at a distance of less than three metres. The doors are unlocked when the driver – or at least the driver’s phone – is 1.5 metres away.

So what else do I get for my money?

Well that depends on which version you choose. The Cooper C and Cooper S models will be offered with a choice of three trim levels, with the basic Classic joined by the Exclusive and Sport options. Prices start from £22,300 for the Cooper C in Classic form, which offers LED headlights, cruise control and a rear-view camera as standard, along with satellite navigation and a heated steering wheel. Upgrade to the £26,700 Cooper S and you can add keyless entry, wireless phone charging and heated front seats to the list, as well as a head-up display.

Moving up to the Exclusive gets you some decorative trim and a lidded storage box in Grey Knit, while the Sport gets a sportier gearbox setting, black-and-red interior trim and a sportier body kit, including 18-inch alloy wheels.

James Fossdyke - 7 Feb 2024

Earlier articles featuring 2024 Mini Cooper

2023-07-21: Inside's out on new Mini Cooper Electric

2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.

2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.2024 Mini Cooper Petrol Reveal. Image by Mini.    - Mini road tests
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