MINI 2001 Hatchback

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In their own words

To summarise in a few words, I bought this car with 45,000 miles and part exchanged it for another mini one D (2013) at 98,000 miles. The money I saved from the excellent fuel efficiency and low consumables costs (primarily tyres being cheap as chips) I ended up spending a large proportion of it on the underlying, fundamental reliability issues. Body work was mint for its age, didn't rust at all. Reliability problems: The key problem I had with the vehicle was the engine. After buying it from a small independent garage, the car eventually started to smoke upon start up. I noticed that when the engine was cold that this would happen and spent hundreds trying to resolve it - getting the glow plugs replaced - a known problem with the engines in these cars which can costs thousands if they break in the engine head (because you have to get it machined). None of this fixed the problem and eventually the alternator failed, creating a dangerous breakdown situation for me - if I hadn't turned the key to the off position, I'd have been locked in the car on a blind corner. I also had the steering pump replaced after the bearing in it started to fail which was an additional £300. After all this, the car still smoked on start up and eventually even started to stall on startup. I got rid of it not long after this. Be wary of warm engines if you are looking to buy a new one as it won't smoke if warmed up, but the revs may drop. Good points: Very comfortable seats for a cheap hatchback. Amazing fuel economy, can easily go from Oxford to Truro in Cornwall and back again comfortably on a single tank. Handles like it is on rails down country lanes. Great fun to drive compared to most cheaper hatchbacks that come across as dry and boring. Really good sound system for the money with minimal road noise. Overall, if you're after a cheap-to-run car that will be fairly fun to drive, then get one that has at most 40,000 miles on it. Be wary of used versions with 60,000 miles plus that haven't had the glow plugs replaced and always check the engine from a cold start. If you are after luxury, get something else. If you'd accept a more boring, cheaper car, get something else. If you like fun and a bit of economy, get this.
  • How they rated it

  • Reliability: 2 out of 5 2.0
  • Meets Expectations: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Overall Rating: 3 out of 5 3.0
  • Simon Edwards recommends this car

About their car

  • Fuel type Diesel
  • When purchased August 2017
  • Condition when bought Used
  • Current Mileage 98,000 miles
  • Average MPG 50 mpg
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