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Published Date: 14/10/2017

When the first-generation MINI Countryman arrived in 2010, boldly breaking tradition with a ‘bigger is better’ philosophy, it won hearts the world over and has topped MINI’s sales chart for a number of years. It’s easy to understand why the BMW-produced Countryman has been such a hit, its raised-up crossover body-styling and enlarged dimensions making it perfect for families and other motorists who enjoy a more commanding view of the open road. The second-generation MINI Countryman was recently released so let’s take a look at what’s new.

A far-from-mini makeover

The Mk2 MINI Countryman’s styling suits its mid-size crossover proportions even more naturally. The designers have introduced some stunning lines to give the new model a more rugged and muscular - yet still some might say beautiful - appearance. The front grille now has a more definite and individual shape to it and the squared-off headlights look simply amazing.

At the back, the reworked bumper and styling creases make the Countryman appear taller, while the redesigned light clusters and new silver-trimmed handle above the number plate bestow it with classiness. Its vital stats have grown as part of the design evolution and the new Countryman is 202mm longer and 33 wider than its daring predecessor. Fun-loving drivers will relish being able to customise their Countryman with various themes, bonnet stripes and other details.

Conclusion: The 2nd generation Countryman accentuates all that was great about the design of the original model and is now more desirable and appealing than ever.

An interior perfect for families

Up against several similarly-sized rival crossovers and compact family SUVs, the 2017 MINI Countryman is now genuinely suited to families or motorists who regularly carry passengers or luggage around. The headline stat is that boot space has increased from 350 litres to an impressive 450 litres, while it’s much more comfortable in the back thanks to extra legroom, headroom and seats that move on runners. MINI’s lovable circular dashboard design ensures that the brand’s roots and traditions are carried on. The air vent design is exclusive to the Countryman, all the controls are placed exactly where you’d expect to find them, and there’s a strong sense of high quality throughout. DAB radio and a 6.5-inch touchscreen with European sat nav are standard and plenty of interior customisations are also available.

Conclusion: Quirky, oversized styling continues inside, resulting in a technology-filled interior oozing charm along with bags more practicality thanks to size increases all round.

Engines for everyone - and now including hybrid

With ‘One’ trim discontinued, the 2nd generation MINI Countryman’s engine line-up kicks off with 1.5-litre petrol Cooper and 2.0-litre diesel Cooper D models. MINI drivers who like their cars a little spicier will love the Cooper S that pumps out 192bhp, but the chief performer is the 231bhp John Cooper Works model, capable of reaching 62mph in just 6.5 seconds. Fuel economy ranges up to 65.7mpg with the Countryman Cooper D, which also leads in greenness with CO2 emissions of 113g/km, making it a great car for business fleets, too.

All versions are available with MINI’s very capable ALL4 four-wheel drive system, opening up the Countryman experience for even more exciting adventures. And for customers wanting to embrace green technology, a plugin hybrid model is available, boasting an all-electric, emissions-free range of up to 26 miles and an overall range of 310.

Conclusion: Lower-mileage compact SUV crossover drivers who fancy zestful performance blended with decent running costs and all-season reassurance can’t go wrong with the new Countryman S ALL4, priced from just £500 more than the diesel equivalent.

In numbers…

 

New 2nd gen MINI Countryman

 

Min

Max

Power (HP)

136

231

Fuel (comb MPG)

38.2

134.5

Emissions (CO2, g/km)

49

169

Top Speed (mph)

147

155

0 – 60mph in…. (seconds)

6.5

9.6

Price

£22,625

£31,575

Following a raft of cohesive styling tweaks, the new, second generation MINI Countryman looks the part on the road and provides more charm than many rivals in the compact SUV crossover segment, blending British tradition with German build quality. The interior is more luxurious, too, and features a superb range of equipment as standard, along with increased room for passengers and luggage, making it a genuinely practical solution. The simplified range of engines for the new Countryman mean there’s something for everyone, including the plugin hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) with emissions of just 49g/km, appealing to many private and business buyers alike.

 

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