This week I am behind the wheel of the 2014 MINI Cooper. 2014 marks the first use of a three-cylinder engine under the hood of this subcompact coupe, and thanks to the use of a turbocharger it pushes out 134 horsepower and 162 lb-ft of torque. The six-speed manual that come with my tester does a good job of managing the Cooper’s output, and the vehicle, while not blazingly fast, is exactly what I would want when it comes to acceleration from this class of hatchback.
Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for the interior. For a car that starts at around $20k, I expect a lot more in terms of standard equipment and materials quality. I’m also not all that happy with the cramped rear seat – you can’t sit anyone behind the driver, and if you want to haul a third person then the front right passenger is going to have to slide the rails all the way forward.