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by David Zalstein

The all-new third-generation Mini Cooper will start up to $5000 cheaper than the model it replaces when the British hatch goes on sale locally later this month.

Starting at $26,650 – down $5000 – the Mini Cooper is powered by a 100kW/220Nm (230Nm with overboost) turbocharged 1.5-litre three-cylinder petrol engine.

Up 10kW and 60Nm over the outgoing naturally aspirated 1.6-litre four-cylinder model, the new entry-level Cooper hatch also claims European efficiency cycle figures of 4.7 litres per 100km and 110 grams of CO2 per kilometre and a 7.9-second 0-100km/h time.

Mini Cooper

Sharing engine size and capacity, the 85kW/270Nm diesel-powered Cooper D is priced from $31,800 – down $3000 – and is claimed to return figures of 3.7L/100km and 97g/km.

Three figures should also come up 0.5sec faster (9.2 sec) than the previous diesel thanks to a 3kW power increase.

Both the base Cooper (pictured above) and Cooper D can be spotted by their white aluminium radiator ‘grille ribs’ and tailgate handles and single off-set chrome-tipped exhaust.

Now $3750 cheaper at $36,950, the flagship Mini Cooper S (pictured below) is distinguished by its honeycomb radiator grille, bonnet scoop, front bumper-mounted brake ducts, aggressive rear bumper, twin central tailpipes and ‘S’ logos.

Mini Cooper S

Powered by a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder, the 141kW/280Nm (300Nm with overboost) Cooper S betters its hot-hatch predecessor by 6kW and 40Nm, while its claimed 6.8sec 0-100km/h is 0.2sec quicker.

Efficiency is also improved 0.4L/100km and 8g/km to 5.9L/100km and 138g/km.

First revealed late last year, the 98mm longer, 44mm wider and 7mm taller Mini comes mated as standard to a new six-speed manual transmission, with a six-speed automatic transmission optional – the latter teamed with automatic engine stop-start for the first time and expected to again cost $2350.

With a wider front and rear track, updated electromechanical power steering, and keyless start, the new Mini also gains a new central instrument display – available as a four-line TFT or a 6.5-inch or 8.8-inch colour display depending on the model and options selected. Boot capacity is also up 51 litres to 211L.

Optional equipment has been expanded on the new Mini Cooper range to include an extendible head-up display, Dynamic Damper Control, LED headlights and a new driving assistant system including active cruise control, collision and pedestrian warning, high beam assist, parking assist and a rear view camera.

Full specification details will be revealed closer to the local launch on April 14.




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