MINI COOPER’S CABRIOLET HAS LONG BEEN A GOLDEN OLDIE- BUT THE NEW ITERATION AND ITS SOUPED-UP S VERSION HAVE TAKEN THINGS UP A NOTCH.
First things first, I’ve an ex-Mini Cabriolet owner. Ten years ago I sprang for a Mini Cooper S Cabriolet, and while since then I’ve moved to a Range Rover Evoque and Mercedes Benz GLA 180 for various pragmatic reasons, the love for the marque has remained- there’s nothing more pleasurable than making a sharp turn on a Mini and feeling the go-kart response, as well as the crackling “pop” from the exhaust when accelerating.
Of course, it wasn’t like the car was perfect- the ride was pretty bumpy over potholed roads, and fuel efficiency and transmission was sometimes a little far less than desired, even with the S Cabriolet.
Our verdict after almost a week on the roads with both the new S Cabriolet and its very slightly-less sportier Cabriolet brother? Man, the car’s so much improved from a decade ago!
Starting with the S variant, it’s 4-cylinder petrol engine with 192 horsepower packs an amazing punch, especially in sports mode. And it looks gorgeous even without any further body kit improvements, with air inlets in the bumper and bonnet, and by the rear apron with diffusor insert and centerline twin exhaust tailpipes.
As for the Cabriolet version, while we did feel a distinct power drop with it’s 136 horsepower engine, looks-wise it’s still a beauty, with contrasting colour for mirror caps possible; safety bar, grill slats and tailgate handle strip in black high-glass, 15 inch light–alloy wheels, and a chrome-plated tailpipe trim.
But our favourite feature ten years on? We discovered an super-easy to reach max air-con blast button right next to the left of the steering wheel- and that’s definitely a necessity on those hot Singapore afternoon’s where you’ve parked outdoors! On the other hand, you could just lower that top within 20 seconds and let the wind in your hair do the cooling!
Last, but certainly not least, Mini’s offering a lot more heritage elements to the Mini, with the Union Jack woven into the fabric of the roof, as well as optional LED turn indicators with the same design as well!
PHOTOS MINI SINGAPORE