MINI 2001 Hatchback

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In their own words

The two huge positives of this car are that 1. It looks great inside and out and 2. It is fun to drive. I love the colour and styling of the park lane, it looks stunning when washed and waxed and personally I think much newer than some of the standard coloured minis of the same age. Everybody comments on what a nice car it is. Drives like a go-kart! It holds the road really well and the 1.6 engine has enough punch to feel (and sound!) quite sporty and powerful enough out of town. However, the clutch and steering are quite heavy which, though sporty and engaging when you want, can get a bit tiring on longer journeys. I also find that though it feels at home on the motorway in terms of handling, it's not quite geared for it and 70mph is about 3500rpm - which isn't that economical. BUT, don't let these minor niggles take away from what a fab little car this is. I much prefer it to the newer ones where they've turned the mini into huge 5 door things but maybe that's just me. On these reviews they used to ask what you'd buy next - well I'm not sure I could part with this car actually but if I did (or bought a 2nd...) then I'd be looking at one of the newer Cooper S/MX5/Audi TT/GT86. Thanks.

How reliable do you find the car?

In the 6.5 years the car has been in the family it has never once broken down - and considering it is now 11 years old that speaks volumes. More recently a few parts have had to be replaced here and there but nothing that you wouldn't expect of an aging vehicle - in the 2 years I've had it this has included a wheel bearing and new front discs and pads. In addition I've had to deal with a few gen 1 mini specific issues including a new exhaust hanger bracket and oil leaks from two locations which, until diagnosed, meant I regularly had to top it up (A LOT!). I suspect that, if this was an issue towards the end of my Mum having the car (who wouldn't check levels between scheduled services), then the car may have been run quite low on oil - which does worry me about the engine's longevity. Nevertheless it is a reliable car and as far as I can gather these 1.6 tritec engines are much more bulletproof than the 2nd Gen cars which use PSA units.

Does the car do everything you expected it to do?

It's a great town car for zipping about and is also ok on longer journeys. You can fit a surprising amount in one of these because the seats fold absolutely flat (and I regularly do - a cello included!) but it is no cavernous volvo estate. Four seats.
  • How they rated it

  • Reliability: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Meets Expectations: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Overall Rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Oliver Dixon recommends this car

About their car

  • Fuel type Petrol
  • When purchased March 2015
  • Condition when bought Used
  • Current Mileage 69,000 miles
  • Average MPG 40 mpg