Reviewed by Automotive on
The 2013 Mini Cooper proves itself to be one of the most highly customizable vehicles available on the market today. Hatchbacks and convertibles are available to start. Falling just short of a luxury vehicle, the Mini Cooper inhabits a rather unique place in the market, offering some of the best of both worlds to its consumers. Numerous interior upgrades and exterior choices are available for the Cooper, including a host of colors inside and out and comforts and conveniences that rival any of its competitors. Its unique styling certainly stands out, with a characteristic design that remains innovative even today with more subcompact cars on the road. The Cooper delivers a tight performance as well, getting good marks for fuel economy and managing a rather thrilling ride to boot. Offering all the options and style one could want, its steady performance and relative economy compared to other entry-luxury vehicles make the Mini Cooper a rather wise choice for a fun subcompact.
New For 2013
Several changes have been made to the John Cooper Works models, which get a new selection of engines that are more fuel efficient. Maximum output remains at 208 horsepower, and a six-speed automatic transmission is now available on John Cooper Works models. Electric power steering has also been improved for a better feel.
The originator of the econobox design, the Mini Cooper set the standard for the layout of a compact car. This year’s Cooper carries the torch, offering a distinguished look with few direct competitors in the market. Its steel front end and side panels offer a rigid body design, which improves performance. Also, its bulldog appearance, with a rather wide body and wheels pushed out the edge, improves its overall balance. Its large headlights and smiling front end are rather characteristic features to the vehicle, as well as its short hood and flat roof. Featuring a lineup of three-door hatchbacks and two-door convertibles, the Cooper features standard 15-inch alloy wheels, though 16-inch and 17-inch wheels are available as well. Xenon high-intensity discharge headlamps are optional, as are heated mirrors, fog lights, and rain-sensing wipers. The S also includes a hood scoop to provide more airflow into the engine. A number of excellent body colors are available, with more unique choices than most cars. Varying roof colors are available as well. Highlights of available exterior colors include Hot Chocolate Metallic, Spice Orange Metallic, and British Racing Green II Metallic.
Interior & Cargo
The 2013 Mini Cooper has a rather roomy and comfortable interior, despite what one might think by looking from the outside. The speedometer is mounted on a center console that includes the stereo and the optional navigation system. Leatherette upholstery with height-adjustable sport seats are equipped standard with the base and S, while the John Cooper Works receives cloth seating. A split-folding rear seatback is included as well, though it isn’t particularly roomy even for average-size adults. Leather upholstery is optional, as well as heated seats. Full power accessories are also equipped on all models. Cargo space is a mere six cubic feet, though with the rear seats folded down, a far better figure of 23.3 cubic feet is achieved. Audio and cruise controls are conveniently located on the steering wheel and the Cooper gets an AM/FM sound system with a CD player, plus an auxiliary MP3 input. A premium Harman Kardon stereo is optional. Bluetooth wireless connectivity for hands-free calls is also equipped standard. The optional Mini Connected system features a 6.5-inch screen with USB input and smartphone integration.
The 2013 Mini Cooper includes all the usual standard safety features one would expect, such as four-wheel anti-lock brakes, stability and traction control, and electronic brakeforce distribution. The Cooper also features dual front side-mounted airbags and front and rear head airbags. As an added measure of security, a remote anti-theft alarm system, park distance control, and a post-collision safety system come standard as well. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the Cooper its top rating of ""Good"" for its frontal-impact test; however it received a lower score of only ""Acceptable"" in side-impact tests. A few upgrades are available, including xenon headlamps, run-flat tires (which comes standard on the S), and rear parking sensors.
The 2013 Mini Cooper offers a rather agile ride, offering lots of elegance on curvy roads partially due to its rather stout frame. Equipped with a 1.6-liter, four-cylinder engine, it produces 121 horsepower and 114 lb-ft of torque, ample power to scoot the vehicle along just fine. Estimated fuel economy stands at 29/37 mpg city/highway, which is not too shabby. The S features a turbocharged version of the engine that delivers 181 horsepower and 177 lb-ft of torque. The John Cooper Works brings this up to 208 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque, and adds an improved suspension as well. This heftier engine receives slightly lower marks for fuel economy, coming in at 26/35 mpg city/highway. The John Cooper Works improves speeds considerably. It can go from zero to 60 mph in a cool 6.1 seconds. A six-speed manual transmission comes standard, though a six-speed automatic with paddle shifters is available for all but the John Cooper Works.
Key Competitors For The 2013 Mini Cooper
- Ford Focus
- Mazda MAZDASPEED3
- Volvo C30
Expand full summary
2013 Cooper Clubman S Hatchback Vehicle Overview
Engine: 1.6L in-line 4 DOHC and variable valve timing
Premium unleaded fuel
Fuel economy: Gasoline 26 MPG city, 35 MPG highway, 29 MPG combined and 383 mi. range
Gasoline direct fuel injection
13.2gallon fuel tank
Power (SAE): 181 hp @ 5,500 rpm; 192 ft lb of torque @ 1,600 rpm