What am I looking at?
By and large, barely anything. A few pencil strokes to the exterior and a sprinkling of technology is just about all you’re getting, though MINI has carried over new engine technologies from the Hatch to the crossovers.
In base “One” trim (Countryman only), this means either an 89 hp petrol 1.6 or a 90 hp diesel 1.6. For “Cooper” grade you can select a 122 hp petrol 1.6 or a 11 hp diesel 1.6. Upgrading to “Cooper S” specification boosts this to either a 143 hp 2.0 diesel or the smoking 190 hp turbocharged petrol 1.6 – but if even this isn’t enough, there’s a 218 hp “John Cooper Works” model for both cars.
All of the diesels now meet the latestEuro6 emissions regulations and turn in 67.3 mpg and 111 g/km CO2 (62.8 mpg and 119 g/km for the Cooper SD), while the petrols all sit around 137 g/km and 47 mpg (39.8 mpg and 165 g/km for the JCW).
The Countryman and Paceman continue to share their platform but, from 2015, it will also form the basis of the new BMW X1. The Countryman can thus be seen as a preview of sorts of the next generation of BMW’s own-brand baby SUV.
All models (except the Countryman One/One D) are offered with MINI ALL4 four wheel drive – standard on the John Cooper Works – and an optional six speed automatic transmission instead of the standard six speed manual (except the Countryman One D). Pricings are not yet available for these options, nor are emissions data which you should expect to suffer slightly.
How much will it cost me?
The new Countryman will start at 16,990 – a 300 increase – when it’s available later in the spring. Though further prices aren’t available, you can expect to pay around 29,000 for the top spec John Cooper Works model (and likely 30,000 with the optional automatic), with the Paceman joining it at 19-31k.
Surprisingly not all that many. The aforementioned BMW X1 will be the one most commonly cross-shopped, but if you’re keen to look outside the family you might consider the quirky Renault Captur (though it lacks 4WD) or Peugeot 2008. Another keen rival lurks in the form of the unexpected Skoda Yeti.
In a line?
A facelift of details alone – spot the difference?