2018 MINI CooperFeatured MINI Test Drive Reviews 

MINI to the Max: 2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 Test Drive

Remember back when there used to be only one MINI? It was small and cute with two doors and was about as distinctive as an automobile could get. Well, now there are a bunch of MINIs that come in all shapes and sizes, like this 2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4. It utilizes a turbocharged 3-cylinder gas engine along with an electric motor. It’s also all-wheel drive and has a power cord so you can plug it in when you go to sleep at night. For the full 2018 MINI S E Countryman ALL4 review, specs, pricing and data read on!

2018 MINI Cooper

2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 Exterior

Let’s get one thing straight  — there’s nothing MINI about this MINI. In fact the Countryman ALL4 is the largest vehicle in MINI’s arsenal. It sits on a 105.1-inch wheelbase and has an overall length of 169.8 inches. For reference, that’s only 2.2 inches shorter than a Range Rover Evoque. However, with size comes usability and that’s where the Countryman ALL4 excels. MINI has done a great job here of making a plug-in look burly. The front end is classic MINI using traditional design features with modern touches. The lower front fascia, for example, sees large callouts that house an auxiliary set of driving lights, while a subtle bulge on the hood lets onlookers know there’s something special going on.

18-inch blacked-out pin-spoke alloys compliment the roof treatment and MINI has even done a great job incorporating the plug-in port on the front fender by giving it a classic look. Brushed roof rails are useful for bike and cargo racks, and that large rear hatch provides a huge opening for the loading and unloading of cargo. Even though the Countryman is actually quite large, the designers have done a great job of keeping the design on brand so that the ALL4 can never be mistaken for anything but, a MINI.

2018 MINI Cooper

2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 Interior

Since they debuted back in 2001, the MINI has always had a slick interior. From the dinner plate size dash display and classic toggle switches, to the simple HVAC controls and shifter, every aspect of the Countryman’s cabin oozes retro-cool. The optional leather-wrapped Cooper S Sport Seats with heat provided great lateral and lumbar support, and to my surprise, rear seat room was quite substantial as well. In regards to cargo space, simply drop down the 60/40 split seats and you’re looking at a total of 17 cubic-feet of storage.

Hybrid system aside, MINI has incorporated quite a bit of technology by way of their 6.5-inch multifunction center display screen. This can be accessed via rotary knob that sits behind the shifter and gives one access to everything from audio and vehicle settings, to the standard rearview camera, to the car’s navigation system. Lastly, and this one is big, the materials used have been greatly improved over previous models,0 giving the Countryman an interior that’s worthy of its $40k window sticker.

2018 MINI Cooper

2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 Performance

The Countryman ALL4 SE is powered by a hybrid system that utilizes MINI’s TwinPower turbo 3-cylinder engine along with an electric motor. Both systems work together achieving max performance and generate a combined total output of 221 horsepower and 284 lb-ft of torque. The engine by itself produces 134 horsepower and 162 lb-ft of torque, while the electric motor adds an additional 87 horsepower  and 122 lb-ft. For a vehicle that weighs in at 3,915 pounds, the ALL4 is actually quite zippy, and will scoot to 60 mph in under seconds.

The hybrid power produced is also more than adequate for just about every situation, with the all wheel drive system allowing for an immediate surge forward with no loss of traction. Power is transmitted to the wheels via a six-speed automatic with selectable drive modes (Auto eDrive, Max eDrive, Save Battery Mode) that allow drivers to tailor their level of efficiency to suit their driving style. The ride quality was smooth overall, and the Countryman felt planted and fun on both the highway and on secondary roads. Braking performance was also confidence inspiring. The steering on the Countryman offered good feedback through the steering wheel and wasn’t overly assisted. EPA figures for the 2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 (man that’s a long name) are rated at 28 mpg city, 27 mpg highway and 27 mpg during combined driving with an EV range of 12 miles, which balances out to an overall of 65 MPGe.

2018 MINI Cooper

2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 Safety

Aside from all wheel drive, the Countryman S E ALL4 offers a variety of safety systems to keep you and your passengers safe. Systems such as airbags throughout the cabin, anti-lock brakes, traction and stability control, a standard rear-view camera, rear park distance control, forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking are all incorporated here.

Additional safety features can viewed at MINIUSA.com.

2018 MINI Cooper

2018 MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 Overall

To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect from the Countryman, as it’s the largest vehicle in MINI’s lineup. At first glance, I thought it was simply too big and that, with a 3,900-pound curb weight, that it wouldn’t have any of the traits that make its smaller siblings great. But after spending a week with it and getting used to the hybrid system, it was clear that the brand has found a way to enhance the overall usability of it’s largest offering without losing any of the sporty fun that MINI is known for.

Drop by your local AutoNation MINI dealer today to check one out!

*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.

**Vehicle MSRP of $40,000.00 excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.

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