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The facelifted MINI Cooper S Convertible offers buckets load of charm and driving performance.

09 Jul 2019

There aren't much changes to the sheet metal to shout about when it comes to the facelifted MINI Cooper S Convertible. It's almost the same as its predecessor, see, which means it'll take more than just a keen eye to spot the differences.

But that doesn't really matter because the important changes for the car that you see here are skin deep.

Car now comes with stylish Union Jack-motif taillights

What about those changes?

For one, you now get relevant-looking Union Jack-motif taillights that are instantly recognisable. You also get to boast about the illuminated Union Flag on the dashboard, too.

But more importantly, the gearbox has been mechanically improved, and for very good reasons. We're not talking so much about the shape of the gear knob (which has been elongated), but more of the number of cogs.

While it was previously a traditional six-speed torque converter, the current drop-top sports a more efficient and quicker seven-speed dual-clutch autobox. So while the performance figures remain at 192 horses and 280Nm of torque, the car manages to improve its fuel economy by 7%.

Key change with this car is the new dual-clutch seven-speed gearbox - it was previously a six-speed torque converter

Although that's all on paper, you hardly feel the difference in real life driving conditions.

Drive it like you want it

That's not a bad thing, actually. Thanks to the healthily-maintained output from the four-pot 2.0-litre turbocharged powerplant that are put through the revised gearbox, the Cooper S Convertible feels smoother at lower speeds and sharper at the higher end of the revs.

Along straights and around bends, the car doesn't seem to disappoint no matter how hard you try to fault it. Yes, external noises are perceptible, but such is the nature of drop-top cars.

2.0-litre turbocharged powerplant pushes out 192 horses and 280Nm of torque

The very attributes that make this car so highly desirable - agility, responsive steering, hot hatch performance and dynamic handling - are still very much on tap. As such, the car feels very much at home around corners.

Sharp handling and speedy steering allow the car to dive in corner after corner keenly with very little lateral movement, with the accompaniment of some very entertaining pop and crackle from the centrally-located twin exhaust tailpipes.

Floor the right pedal and the MINI will finish the century sprint in 7.1 seconds. It does feel a lot hastier in the real world rather than on physical paper, but it's not the sort of speed that would land you in a neck brace.

And that's always a positive thing, especially if the 'lifestyle' sort of thing is right up your alley. The car somehow balances speed and show so effortlessly that you can hardly complain.

The drop-top Cooper S never fails to serenade you with its lovely exhaust note

Hence, it's hard to fault the car even if it's common knowledge that the hard-top brethren will drive with better insulation and refinement. As you and I already know that the removal of the roof oftens ruin a great driver's car, it's not the case here with this MINI.

So can I still do it the 'lifestyle' way?

You could even drive this little Brit like a gentleman to a posh party if the time calls for it. The roof takes a quickie 18-second to fold, up to 30km/h. This means you could still, theoretically, look cool folding the roof while driving the car.

Even with its roof in place, the car looks every bit stylish

In its drop-top form, the car offers some 160 litres of boot space. Should you decide the weather isn't suitable for the occasion and wish to have to roof up, the car will then offer a more generous 215-litre luggage capacity.

Still, buyers of this MINI convertible wouldn't be bothered much by the hauling capacity the car offers. After all, it's really the wind-in-your-hair and sun-in-your-face experience that attract drivers to the car.

What will also attract drivers is the stylish and modern-looking cabin. Apart from the leather-swathed seats, the MINI is anything but boring. You get a neat centre console with the main rotary knob controlling almost about everything regarding the car on the infortainment screen.

The cabin may be a sporty and funky place to be in, but it hasn't compromised comfort for all on board

For both the enthusiast and the lifestyler

Regardless of what the MINI Cooper S Convertible offers to the table, there's just no doubting the desirable disposition this hot hatch has, more so with its drop-top feature.

Not only will you get the high-performance character that will set your heart on fire, there are also the 'cool' and 'stylish' aspects of driving a car like this that will set other people's hearts on fire.

Now that's a change that's truly skin deep.
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Car Information

MINI Cooper S Convertible 2.0 (A)
Rate it


: $173,888

Engine Type


4-cylinder in-line 16-valve Turbocharged

Engine Cap





141kW (189 bhp) / 6000 rpm



280 Nm / 4600 rpm



7-speed (A) DCT

Acceleration (0-100 km/h)



Top Speed



Fuel consumption


17.5 km/L

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