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Old 11.06.2015, 14:23
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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I have a Mini Countryman 4x4 and I love it. Yes it's more expensive than the small French cars... but they get very expensive after a few years, I used to have a Citroen Saxo that cost me an absolute fortune to maintain after it was 3 years old.
Thank for the Mini tumbs-up.


Regarding French cars - the Citroen SAXO was introduced in 1996 - that's 19 years ago. Things have changed quite a bit since then.

If you had bought a Skoda then, it would have pre-VW and people were making jokes about the two exhausts existing so people could use them as handles like on a wheelbarrow.

But if people ask about Skodas now, no ones says that the heated rear-windscreen is useful for pushing the car when it breaks down.

I appreciate that people get pretty subjective about car likes and dislikes and it's quite difficult to be objective (which is why JD power type surveys are useful) but this is all getting a bit silly.
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Old 11.06.2015, 14:29
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

SEAT Ibiza/Leon
Skoda Fabia/Yeti

Those lot offer good bang for your buck. The only engine to avoid is the twin-charger engine. Plenty of bargains around for nearly new Leon's - make sure you go for the new model and you'll have all the toys, decent space and fairly nippy car.

If you go for a Mini - as BB2 says, the "old" model with its Pug engine isn't exactly reliable. The "old old" model with the Chrysler engine was thirsty. The "new" one with the BMW "family" engine (1.5 or 2.0) is unproven.
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Old 11.06.2015, 14:31
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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I have a Mini Countryman 4x4 and I love it. Yes it's more expensive than the small French cars... but they get very expensive after a few years, I used to have a Citroen Saxo that cost me an absolute fortune to maintain after it was 3 years old.

The countryman has more space but a different type of drive to the reg mini, the reg mini hugs the corners better if you're into that sort of thing
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Old 11.06.2015, 14:46
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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If you had bought a Skoda then, it would have pre-VW and people were making jokes about the two exhausts existing so people could use them as handles like on a wheelbarrow.

But if people ask about Skodas now, no ones says that the heated rear-windscreen is useful for pushing the car when it breaks down.

I appreciate that people get pretty subjective about car likes and dislikes and it's quite difficult to be objective (which is why JD power type surveys are useful) but this is all getting a bit silly.
But then I wonder whether the VW Group didn't just acquire the brandname and fill it with their own engineering. Is there anything (other than the logo) that Skoda invented pre-takeover that survived into any of the post-acquisition models?

Having said that, I wonder how Skoda acquired the reputation it did. In other domains the Czechs have a great reputation for innovation and engineering.
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Old 11.06.2015, 14:53
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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Is it really? I always thought that Alfa Romeos were just another Saab, but of course I know f.all about cars
I think you missed the heavy dollop of sarcasm about Alfa reliability.

But you've piqued my curiosity: in what way do you see Alfas as "just another Saab"? Their shared Scandinavian heritage? Aero industry links? Saab's famous racing legacy? Or just bankruptcy?
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Old 11.06.2015, 15:03
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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I think you missed the heavy dollop of sarcasm about Alfa reliability.

But you've piqued my curiosity: in what way do you see Alfas as "just another Saab"? Their shared Scandinavian heritage? Aero industry links? Saab's famous racing legacy? Or just bankruptcy?
Brand loyalty?
Non-buyers having any clue why people buy them?
Passion for putting excessive PS through the front wheels?
Shared platform? (164 and 9000)
Tendancy to stick 2 fingers up at their overlords?
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  #27  
Old 11.06.2015, 15:05
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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But then I wonder whether the VW Group didn't just acquire the brandname and fill it with their own engineering. Is there anything (other than the logo) that Skoda invented pre-takeover that survived into any of the post-acquisition models?
To be honest, car manufacturers today all seem to be in one big bowl of alliance soup with bits and pieces and expertise and knowledge making it on to all cars.

Most of the people complaining of unreliability of specific models or makes are basing their remarks on experiences gained many, many years ago.
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Old 11.06.2015, 15:18
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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I have a mini clubman and love it for what it's worth, it's responsive and drives well and easy to park usually.

I have never liked any of the French cars
Owned one French car. Never ever again. Buy a horse first.
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  #29  
Old 11.06.2015, 15:53
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

If buying new another thing to consider is the mini is very equipment light, and the options are stupid expensive, and there are hundreds of them, and the dealer will do the hard sell on them. Took us about 90 minutes to go through them all, and just a few bumped the price up over 5k, I wanted a heated windscreen but of course that came in a pack with other shit I didn't want, half leather as standard, want full? That's another pack etc etc
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  #30  
Old 11.06.2015, 15:57
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

Just a little anecdote, but one of our neighbours has just swapped her Mini as it had a few bits and pieces requiring maintenance and it was very expensive to do. She's changed it for a Polo instead.
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:14
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

I have a Mini Countryman. I love the car. It comes with maintenance included, which is rather nice. It's rather spacey inside, it's comfortable to drive, has a decent trunk, and I love the design. I found out recently it's large enough to fit a 2.20m wooden board from Hornbach...

I went through thousands of cars for sale posts. I saw a bunch of them. I might have seen cheaper cars, or cars with less gasoline consumption, or with more horse powers. However, when I took the drive test with the Mini Countryman I knew it was the one. (I confess, I am more into the design part of the car than the ecological or horse power of the thing... It pays SUV taxes...).

I tried a Mini Cooper. This might sound like a mighty girly thing to say, but I didn't like it because it was so low it was a bit unnerving to get out of it while wearing a skirt (which I wear rather often). It was also a little too snug for my taste.

I got a rather good deal in an official dealer (it was second hand). I have not regretted the choice. Still love the car to bits. Has never let me down.
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  #32  
Old 11.06.2015, 16:16
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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Owned one French car. Never ever again. Buy a horse first.
I've owned seven. Never had any problems.
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:18
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

What about an Abarth 695 Biposto?
Of course with with racing kit, dog ring gearbox and racing windows.
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  #34  
Old 11.06.2015, 16:21
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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What about an Abarth 695 Biposto?
Of course with with racing kit, dog ring gearbox and racing windows.
Nothing remotely Italian permitted, sorry.
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:27
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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Nothing remotely Italian permitted, sorry.
Why not?
Your wife will be bothered with all issues during the week and in the weekend you can take it out to play
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:32
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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Why not?
Your wife will be bothered with all issues during the week and in the weekend you can take it out to play
Her choice, not mine. I've got a toy for the weekend anyway (when I can get it back on the road).
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:38
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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Brand loyalty?
Non-buyers having any clue why people buy them?
Passion for putting excessive PS through the front wheels?
Shared platform? (164 and 9000)
Tendancy to stick 2 fingers up at their overlords?
The Alfa Romeos from mid-2000s and on are relatively reliable cars, a lot has changed since the 164... The Giulietta,the Mito and the 159 are well put together with good engines. They are no Audi/BMW whatsoever, but they cost considerably less.

Since the build quality of the 159 was already very good, I hope the new Giulia comes with RWD and good reliability. In terms of design nothing can beat an Italian car.
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:39
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

I actually closely looked at mini the other day - they just look too chunky and clumsy.

Fortunately, I see from time to time, a couple of 'proper' minis around (I think there are a couple of enthusiasts, locally).
My garagist proudly showed me an immaculate, almost rally spec., Cooper S he was working on, the other year.

What about a local brand - plenty of dealers and probably not too expensive to run ..... an Astra or Mokka - without the stigma of being a Vauxhall.

Never owned one*, but had an Astra as a renter a couple of times and have been happy (better than the Yaris, I had once as renter).

*I did actually own a Viva 2300, back in the day, which was a bit naughty.
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:50
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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The Alfa Romeos from mid-2000s and on are relatively reliable cars
May I suggest you never go up to a 156 owner and say that - especially using words like "main" and "seal"
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Old 11.06.2015, 16:58
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Re: Buying a Mini Cooper?

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Regarding French cars - the Citroen SAXO was introduced in 1996 - that's 19 years ago. Things have changed quite a bit since then.
Had my second Saxo 2001-2007. They may well have got better in the last 8 years, but once (actually twice as I had 2) bitten twice shy, and I'd never buy a second hand one. Was fab to drive though.

I've had 3 Minis, 2 old style ones my first two cars and now the Countryman Cooper S and I've driven the normal Cooper a lot too... all of them were an awesome drive!
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