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      08-21-2011, 08:16 PM   #1
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Talking My new 2011 R56 Mini Cooper D

Hello all


Some of you will know by now that I've gone and bought a Mini

Picked up my new 2011 R56 Cooper D on 28th July from Sytner Mini, Chigwell. Had been using an old 740i or my 335i as my daily drivers (well, maybe not the 335i , but got fed up of 18mpg in town (if I was lucky) and also paying the 10 daily congestion charge in London.

The Dooper incurs no road tax, no congestion charge, saves me a bucket load of money a month, is currently returning 43mpg in town driving, a steady 58mpg on a motorway run, and achieved considerably less than that at the Nurburgring last weekend!

Three weeks into ownership and I've done 1700 miles, a few laps of the 'Ring, hammered flat out across Germany, had a permanent smile on my face, and am kicking myself as to why I didn't get one sooner!

I went a bit mad on the spec Essentially the only two things I didn't choose were comfort access and full leather. Didn't want comfort access because where the car is parked at work I'd be worried all the time that the car was open if I'm in the restaurant. And full leather seats are super slippery when tanking around the 'Ring!



Inevitably with me there are already plans afoot to 'do' a few things Quaife LSD, JCW brakes, a remap, a couple of colour changes to the chrome trims, Joey-mod lights... I already have a set of matt black 17" R112 Challenge wheels to go on with my winter tyres, at which point I'll get the ones on the car down to Lepsons for a colour change.... I know I know, it's a diesel Mini, but I just can't help it


_________________________________


Bottom line - I love the car It has character by the bucket load, always raises a smile and dirt cheap to run. I must confess the first time I crossed the congestion charge boundary in London, I screamed out "**** You! Ken Livingstone" as for the first time I didn't have to pay the charge! It's a brilliant town car, the start/stop function was annoying at first but now I'm used to it, the Harman Kardon system is brilliant for an OEM option, so much better than the Logic7 system in the E9x, although it is a bit boomy in the lower midrange/upper bass. The latest HDD navigation system is fab and Mini Connected works surprisingly well. One gripe is that my iPod Classic has to use the Y-cable to interface into the USB and because of the location of the socket the iPod has to lie around in the little front part of the centre console, and because it's on view all the time I have to keep disconnecting and reconnecting every time! Has anyone with a Mini got a neat solution where the iPod can be permanently plugged in and yet hidden away?!

To drive, the car is pure fun. A bit bouncy on the suspension in town but it smoothes out at speed. Driving in Germany was great fun and the car was perfectly stable and rock solid at 125mph which is the max I got out of it. Even averaging 105mph on the autobahn chasing down an E92 M3, I achieved 39.7mpg for that 150mile stretch. I drove the car straight out on to the Nurburgring and although lacking in power, especially on the long uphill sections, the Dooper acquitted itself remarkably well and cornering was superb even on regular Continental ContiSport 3 road tyres. Brakes aren't up to it, but then I expected that. The suspension however was surprisingly effective and managed to control some serious punishment. In the wet, the handling is pretty lively and I was managing to get some acute drifting angles, although once the track was dry I did discover a tendency to understeer which was curable with a quick lift of the throttle. The steering is sadly too artificial for me, but I am comparing that to the hydraulic steering racks I normally use and to be fair this car isn't designed to be a full-on driver's car! Despite that, I still managed a 10m05sec BTG 'Ring lap, slowing for an accident and some other traffic!

What else? I've found the seats to be very comfortable if a bit too short in the base, the seat heating ferocious on maximum setting, the sunroof huge but a bit creaky in operation (might have to look at the greasing in the mechanism) and the adaptive xenon lights are just epically good. MUCH better than the E9x. The boot is tiny but with the seats down I can fit four 19" alloy wheels with tyres, overnight bags for two people, a camera bag, laptop bag and a few other odds and sods. Impressive! And the fuel tank is surprisingly tiny, so much so that the effective range is a lot less than I was expecting although it does make a change only putting 48 of diesel in as opposed to 98 of petrol for two thirds the distance!



So, to say that overall I like the car a huge amount is an understatement.

It's bloody brilliant!


_________________________________



Oh, one thing I should say. I did the whole deal with Sytner Mini Chigwell and specifically worked with a seriously lovely girl called Georgina Fisher (who looks after business customers) and of course our own darling Anneka Sanghera.

Those who have been on the forum for a few years will remember that at one point I would condemn the Sytner dealers (Harold Wood in particular) at every opportunity. However since Anneka has come on to the forum, it has been evident that Sytner have upped their game overall and are now forging ahead in the customer service leagues that are monitored by BMW UK. I decided to give Sytner the chance to hammer out a business contract lease for me and I will say this to everybody - they were absolutely FANTASTIC in their customer service and in their dedication to making sure the whole deal went smoothly from start to finish. It was most notable that their focus and attention is on making sure the customer has a faultless experience. They could not have done more to make the purchase go so well. The management has acted proactively to resurrect their reputation, the company has gone from strength to strength and these two girls are two shining examples of how to run a dealership properly.

One last thing - I got in contact with Georgina at the end of June to work out a spec on the car. By the end of the first week I had decided on what I was getting, Georgina had confirmed the lease deal and the order was placed. She then proceeded to work whatever magic she had and organised for my car to be built and delivered in under three weeks. It wasn't as though there already was a car with my specification sitting there - my car was one of the first with the updated media packages and theoretically shouldn't have been ready till the middle of August! Big thumbs up to this girl


_________________________________


Full spec as follows:


2011 R56 Cooper D

850 Pepper white
2P8 17" Cross Spoke Challenge Light Alloy Wheels (CHILI)

FKE1 Cloth/Leather Ray Carbon Black (CHILI)

7HN Sport Pack
7L5 Media Pack
7L7 Vision Pack
872 CHILI Pack

210 Dynamic Stability Control
249 Multi-function Steering Wheel (CHILI)
255 Sport Steering Wheel (CHILI)
302 Alarm System (Thatcham 1)
313 Elec Fold Exterior Mirrors
314 Heated Mirrors/Washer Jets
325 Rear Spoiler (CHILI)
359 Heated Front Screen
383 Roof & Mirror Caps in Black
3A1 John Cooper Works Aerodynamic Kit (Sport)
403 Electric Glass Sunroof
420 Sun Protection Glass
423 Floor Mats, Velour (CHILI)
428 First Aid Kit & Triangle
430 Auto Dimming Ext/Int Mirrors
431 Rear-view Mirror, Auto Dimming
450 Passenger Seat Height Adjustment (CHILI)
473 Armrest - Front, Centre
481 Sport Seats, Front (CHILI)
493 Extended Storage (CHILI)
494 Seat Heating, Front
4AA Anthracite Roof Lining (Sport)
4AU Additional Decor Rings
4BD Interior Trim Piano Black (Sport)
4C1 Colour Line Carbon Black
4CU Interior World Carbon Black
4UF Sport Button (Sport)
502 Headlight Wash
507 Park Distance Control, Rear
520 Foglights, Front (CHILI)
521 Rain Sensor with Auto Headlight Activation
522 Xenon Headlights
524 Adaptive Headlights (Vision)
534 Automatic Air Conditioning (CHILI)
550 On-board Computer (CHILI)
563 Extended Interior Light Package (CHILI)
5DA Passenger Airbag Deactivation, Front
5DD Car Jack
5DT Dynamic Traction Control (Sport)
620 Voice Control (Media)
654 DAB Digital Radio
674 Harman Kardon - HiFi
6FP Visual Boost Radio (Media)
6NE Full Bluetooth with USB (Media)
6NF Telephone USB Audio Interface
6NM MINI Connected (Media)
6UM Mini Navigation (Media)
736 2nd Remote Key
785 White Indicator Lenses (Sport)


Nurburgring Photos as always courtesy of Jochen @ Frozenspeed.com

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      08-21-2011, 10:07 PM   #2
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I really like them minis, excellent choice!

were you tempted with one of them SD things?
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      08-21-2011, 10:15 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zedman View Post
I really like them minis, excellent choice!

were you tempted with one of them SD things?
Not the SD, doesn't make sense to me. The Cooper D is congestion charge free as it's less than 100g/km of CO2. Therefore it's also road tax free. The SD is way above the 100g limit so I'd have to pay 10 a day congestion charge. I'd rather get the petrol S or spend the extra on a JCW than get an SD
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      08-22-2011, 12:31 AM   #4
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Great review, Thnking about a mini myself but also looking at the Seat Leon, not sure what to get now lol

Doesn't sound like you followed the "RUN IN" advise
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      08-22-2011, 01:37 AM   #5
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Tony, it looks absolutely fantastic. I may be replacing my wife's Mini for another very soon and you have given me inspiration! Although it will be another auto and petrol.
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      08-22-2011, 03:02 AM   #6
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I'm struggling to get over the fact you pay a tenner a day on congestion charge - didn't realise it was this high - soon mounts up out of net salary . Do you have to pay at the weekend??? For you Tony, it could be 70 a week (50 if weekday only), a tough pill to swallow; I suppose you are pretty central at work.

Unbelievable spec you have there Tony, looks the dogs danglies, nice one .
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      08-22-2011, 03:10 AM   #7
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Looks great although it does seem pretty small for you!!! It looks slightly comical

A very good DD so that the 335, if it ever resurfaces Can keep her mileage down.

The savings cost wise (esp due to the tax / congestion charge.. ) no doubt pretty much equal the lease anyway? So you're running 2 cars for the price of 1 AND increasing resale value of the 335..

Pretty sensible decision really

Never seen a mini with that many options ticked! Work colleague has a 2011 cooper s but all they got was CHILI and mini connected. It's otherwise completely option free. And they paid 21k for the privilege! Mad decision if you ask me..
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      08-22-2011, 04:23 AM   #8
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Looks great! I bet the factory throught the order was a mistake with that many extras ticked

We e-coat most of the suspension parts for the whole mini range its a great looking car and brilliant to drive!

Enjoy!
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      08-22-2011, 04:53 AM   #9
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Looks great and an interesting review as Minis are very much in my thinking at the moment although perhaps a petrol S or an SD.
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      08-22-2011, 05:14 AM   #10
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How many extras...............

I must say getting 48mpg in the 318D feels good compared to the AMG. Dont really miss the performance either.

Its just cos I am a tight though.
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      08-22-2011, 09:45 AM   #11
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I spot a stubby sports aerial!

Tony you always write a smashing review. Thank you so much from all of us here at Sytner Chigwell for your custom, the fabulous feedback on the car and the service. You have been an absolute pleasure to do business with.
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      08-22-2011, 10:36 AM   #12
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Nice motor
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      08-22-2011, 12:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JLR1969 View Post
Dont really miss the performance either.

Its just cos I am a tight though.
I don't believe you.....


Tony - nice spec!
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      08-22-2011, 01:10 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by - Paul - View Post
I don't believe you.....


Tony - nice spec!
I don't miss it because I don't think about it
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      08-22-2011, 01:16 PM   #15
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What a great write-up! Big thumbs up to Sytner, Georgina and Anneka by the sounds of it!
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      08-22-2011, 01:20 PM   #16
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Looks good Tony.

What remap are you going for?
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      08-22-2011, 01:40 PM   #17
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Nice looking car.

Also nice to see that your 2nd car from Sytners was a bit of a different experience.

They are fun little cars with something that a lot of modern ones are missing, character! Have you got a cradle and tried Mission Control yet?
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      08-22-2011, 02:42 PM   #18
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Nice one Tony!

Having test drove and considered a Cooper S before I plumped for the diesel TT I found that the well specced ones were lovely places to sit and drive!

Makes sooo much sense to avoid the congestion charge and is a tad more inspiring than a Prius
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      08-22-2011, 03:08 PM   #19
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Wow Tony that is some spec

Great review!

Quote:
Originally Posted by E92Fan View Post
The boot is tiny but with the seats down I can fit four 19" alloy wheels with tyres, overnight bags for two people, a camera bag, laptop bag and a few other odds and sods.
...gimp masks and the like I'm presuming !?
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      08-23-2011, 12:41 AM   #20
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wow

Fantastic looking Mini and spec , how much did that all cost ? PM me if you like .
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      08-23-2011, 01:44 AM   #21
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Tony, lovely looking motor mate, never expected it to look so well.

I'm guessing 100% write down too, so what's not to like???

+1 on the price though, but don't stress about it.
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      08-23-2011, 01:45 AM   #22
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+1 for great review

you guys are lucky in the UK
here in aus i specced up Mini Clubman S and it topped up at $59k

if it wasnt for that stupidly high price i'd be in a mini over my current 3er
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