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Mini Roadster: The More Masculine Mini?

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On: Mon, Nov 21, 2011 at 10:56AM | By: Lou Ruggieri


Mini Roadster:  The More Masculine Mini?

We've got to at least give Mini credit, they're trying—the new Mini roadster looks pretty good.  It’s Lower, shorter, and narrower than the current feminine four seater. The roadster is a bit more of a head-turner than any of the micro machines we've seen in recent years.  The roadster is very similar to your average Mini, but there are some small noticeable changes.  Ducts before and aft of the rear wheels as well a spoiler that automatically raises and lowers (up when the car goes over 50 mph and drops back down when the car dips below 37 mph) all help to spice up the looks a bit, while the multilayered top keeps the fun going by being able to be dropped from the driver's seat with almost no effort at all. 

Underneath however, there isn't too much that changes from Mini to Mini, and the Roadster is no different. Potential drivers will get the same engine choices that most others have seen in the past: Either a 1.6-liter four cylinder that puts down a meager 121-horsepower, a supercharged version of the 1.6 that makes a more respectable 181 ponies (the S model), or the ultimate go-fast Mini in the form of the John Cooper Works variant that ups the boost to make a very healthy 208-horsepower. The standard transmission for the roadster is actually, a standard transmission, a six-speed manual to be specific with an optional six-speed auto available on two out of three versions (the JCW is clutch only).

Thanks to a bit of engineering reinforcement, the roadster is just about as stiff as the standard roofed model. Although there is some weight savings due to the lack of a solid piece of metal overhead, and the absence of rear seats, the roadster comes in right around the 2800 pound average that most other Mini's hang around. The roadster does have a slightly more front-loaded weight bias, and a marginally lower center of gravity, but only previous Mini drivers will be able to tell the difference.

Performance for the topless Mini does depend on what version you are interested in. The base model performs like a base model, 0-60 mph comes up in 8.4-seconds, while the S model kicks it up a notch with a 6.5-second run and the JCW version puts the pedal to the metal and comes up with a best-of-the-bunch 6.2-seconds -- not bad with the wind able to blow through your hair. Now before you start reeling off car after car that can outrun the Mini roadster, keep one thing in mind: The roadster's base price is $24,000. Even considering the fact that the JCW will command a higher sticker, there aren't too many cars that offer drop-top fun with low six second performance for around 30 grand anymore. Not to mention the fact that the roadster will offer fuel economy numbers averaging in the mid-thirties. Now will all of that help sway a few more guys to saddle up to this unique fun-filled go-kart? Well, we will have to wait about six months to get some official sales numbers from Mini when the roadster finally goes on sale.


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Stephy21 | 9:50AM (Tue, Nov 22, 2011)

I always thought the mini was a girls car but i guess they are trying to make it a little more manly. But i think this mini looks good.



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