MINI Countryman Cooper D
The MINI Countryman Cooper D is the biggest-ever MINI...
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MINI Countryman Cooper D

  • List price: £24,585
  • Five-door SUV
  • 150bhp 2.0-litre turbo diesel/6-speed manual
  • CO2 emissions/ BIK: 113g/km / 24%
  • Performance: 8.9 secs/129mph
  • Economy claimed/ours: 51.4mpg/41mpg

 

The weather might not be great, but I’ve still been making the most of getting behind the wheel of my new long-term MINI Countryman Cooper D.

YE66RYH actually arrived the same day that my much-loved five-door Cooper was collected. A Cooper D in Island Blue with a black roof, this car was actually used in a few of the launch pics and it arrived with just under 3,000 miles on the clock.

I didn’t spec this car, but like the British Racing Green five-door Cooper before it, MINI hasn’t disappointed. Outside, I like the Island Blue paint (£550) which works well with the black roof and the 17-inch Imprint Spoke alloys (part of the Chili Pack) fill the arches well.

Inside, the MINI Media (£1,100) and the costly MINI Activity Packs (£3,830) have been included, but after over a month behind the wheel of the biggest MINI, I reckon these packs have all the kit you need (well almost!).

Features I like in particular are the impressively bright LED front and rear lights (part of the Chili option pack also fitted), the keyless entry, the softer leather on the steering wheel, the power tailgate and the neat fold-out seat, which is also in the boot.

It is almost perfect, but if I were speccing and money was no problem, I’d be tempted to upgrade the Technology Pack (£2,090), which includes the much-missed Harmon/Kardon Sound System, rear camera and head-up display from my Cooper five-door.

The first long drive I made in this Countryman was a trip to the Goodwood Festival of Speed, for a ride up the hill in the electric hybrid S E version with MINI UK ambassador Charlie Butler-Henderson.

Initial thoughts are that despite being the biggest model to ever wear the winged badge, it feels a lot smaller and MINI-like on the move. This is a result of the sharp steering, slick six-speed manual transmission and considering how tall the new Countryman is – the keen handling.

In fact, the only thing I’m not sure about, is the unsettled ride on the 17-inch alloys, which is at its worst at low speeds – although it’s still better than my own late first-generation Countryman.

To go with this Cooper D’s sporty drive is the same impressively willing and frugal 155bhp, 2.0-litre diesel engine that I had with the Cooper D Clubman.

As part of the Activity Pack, it’s got a bigger fuel tank with 10-litres of extra capacity too. I was certainly impressed with the 514 miles I got out of the first tank of diesel.

Having my own first-generation Countryman Cooper S, has made for an interesting comparison with this car too. With two children under seven, I welcome the extra interior and boot space, although my wife who drives our Countryman the most, thinks there’s less of a difference over ours!

However, there’s still plenty of time for her to change her mind!

MINI Countryman Cooper D has 155bhp 2-litre diesel
MINI Countryman Cooper D

 

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