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2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

2dr

Starting at | Starting at 28 MPG City - 36 MPG Highway

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  • $23,900 original MSRP
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Printable Version

2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

Benefits of Driving a 2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

The MINI Cooper is one of the most exciting and stylish cars on the market. All models offer fun, agile handling. The base model features excellent fuel economy at 30 mpg city and 37 mpg highway, while the convertible allows for carefree, top-down motoring at the push of a button. The Cooper S brings serious performance to the MINI lineup, and the Clubman adds extra space for sharing the MINI motoring experience with friends. The new John Cooper Works package adds performance tweaks to turn the already go-kart-like MINI into the hottest hatchback on the road.

What's new for 2009?

For 2009, MINI returns its popular Cooper in all its forms--2-door hardtop, convertible, and Clubman wagon. While the hardtop received a redesign in 2007 and the Clubman adopted that car's second-generation styling on its 2008 introduction, the convertible gets its facelift for 2009. Styling is in keeping with the rest of the MINI lineup.

Model Strengths

  • Retro good looks
  • fuel economy
  • agile handling
  • high performance from both S and John Cooper Works models

Model Review

All the Coopers in the MINI lineup are praised for their agility and fun-to-drive factor, and all of that returns for 2009.

Printable Version

2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

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Review: 2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

Source: MSN Autos

It may be hard to tell, but BMW's highly acclaimed remake of the MINI Cooper is now in its second generation, and the convertible version is finally here as well. The roofless version of the nimble compact was a smash hit in its last generation, having sold 164,000 units worldwide. Now based on the slightly sleeker body and stiffer chassis of the latest MINI Cooper, the new convertible is aiming to be just as successful.

Model Lineup
Like every Cooper since its reintroduction in 2001, the new convertible is available in two primary trim levels: the basic Cooper Convertible and the more powerful Cooper S Convertible. Although both have taut suspension and a good chassis, the Cooper S is far and away the performer, thanks to its punchy turbocharged engine. Aside from proprietary badging, the Cooper S can easily be recognized from its hood scoop and center-exit exhaust pipes.

Both convertible trims offer plenty of features, with many former options now standard equipment. They are available with dozens of additional options, accessories and packages, including a navigation system and a $1,500 Sport Package consisting of a traction-control system, 17-inch wheels, hood stripes, fog lights and sport seats, but not the "Sport Suspension" option, oddly enough.

Under the Hood
The engine in the 2009 Cooper Convertible is the same unit found in the solid-roofed Cooper: a 1.6-liter four cylinder capable of 118 horsepower at 6000 rpm, with 114 lb-ft of torque at 4250 rpm. While the convertible does add weight, the engine is still sufficient to get around town and enjoy the breeze. For those looking for a bit more kick, the Cooper S Convertible offers the same turbocharged engine found in the Cooper S. With direct injection and a twin-scroll turbocharger, this one produces 172 horses at 5500 rpm, and 177 lb-ft of torque in a flat plateau starting at just 1600 rpm and lasting until 5000 rpm. Additionally, there is a momentary "overboost" function that increases torque by 15 lb-ft from 1700 to 4500 rpm.

Both trims are offered with either the new 6-speed paddle-shift automatic or a traditional manual transmission, also with six gears. Most would agree that a car like this is best enjoyed with a traditional clutch and shifter, though as automatics go, this one offers crisp shifts and gear ratios that make the most of the available torque.

Gas mileage of the base Cooper Convertible is an impressive 28 mpg city/36 mpg highway with the manual transmission, meaning a theoretical 475 miles out of a single tank will be a blessing to many commuters. Perhaps even more impressive is the mere two mpg penalty of jumping to the Cooper S Convertible, with 26 mpg city/34 mpg highway.

Inner Space
True to the original design, the convertible's interior is much roomier than it appears — and notably more so than the previous generation. While the novelty of its hip and modern interior may be starting to wear off, it's miles from drab and depressing. Bold, rounded shapes abound throughout the cabin, as do contrasting colors and materials. While the buttons and switches do appear a little cheap, they actually feel and operate nicely.

The easy-to-read tachometer is still a plus, and hints at the car's sporty personality. The large, center-mounted speedometer flies in the face of BMW's typical "eyes up" driver theme, but there's a digital readout in the tachometer. One of the most interesting features of the new car is the "Openometer," a gauge to the left of the tachometer, designed solely to log the hours spent driving with the top down. Sure, it's technically a gimmick, but it's bound to be fun for owners, and is the kind of purely playful idea that only MINI would have the guts to realize.

The four seats are comfortable and supportive, and even the base black/gray leatherette feels surprisingly nice to the touch. Carbon Black cloth is an option, and leather is available in different colors. Additional color accent and trim options are available as well. Like the exterior, there is no shortage of interior color combinations from which to choose.

On the Road
For a front-wheel-drive compact car, we found the MINI Cooper S Convertible hard to beat for sheer fun. While it's possible to feel the weight increase from the additional chassis reinforcements and bracing, the MINI convertibles don't suffer like most cars originally designed with a roof do that's now lopped off. MINI says that the suspension is tuned specifically for the convertible, but the nimble handling owes itself to simple physics — the cars are diminutive.

Turn-in is quick and responsive, and there's ample grip from the 195-width tires. A little more weight and feedback in the steering wheel would be welcome during hard cornering, though, and experienced drivers seeking to push the MINI to its limits may wish to keep the stability control (DSC) turned off, since its intervention can be a nuisance. The brake pedal communicates nicely, and the brakes themselves offer sufficient stopping power and feature a plethora of electronic aids including ABS, Electronic Brake Force Distribution and Cornering Brake Control.

MINI claims a zero to 60 mph time of 8.9 seconds for the manual-transmission Cooper Convertible, and 7 seconds flat for the S. In driving both the Cooper and the Cooper S, we're left wondering if the ideal engine would be somewhere between the two. The regular Cooper Convertible just isn't powerful enough to have any real fun, while the Cooper S Convertible is plenty fast, with instant turbo boost almost always on tap.

Right for You?
The MINI's small and economical size and lively, tossable demeanor cater to both the green-conscious demographic tired of gas-guzzling SUVs, as well as enthusiasts thrilled to see the tradition of the classic "hot hatch" still alive and kicking. There is certainly a price premium for the convertible, however, with the base Cooper starting at $24,550 and the Cooper S beginning at $27,450. Begin adding some options, and the price will be in the $30Ks before you know it. They both offer plenty of personality, although those who enjoy spirited driving should walk past the base Cooper and straight to the Cooper S.

James Tate cut his teeth in the business as a race team crew member before moving to the editorial side as Senior Editor of Sport Compact Car, and his work has appeared in Popular Mechanics, Automobile, Motor Trend and European Car. When not writing, Tate is usually fantasizing about a vintage Porsche 911.

Printable Version

2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Std
Traction/Stability Control Opt
Tire Pressure Monitoring System Std

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std
Side Air Bag Std
Side Head Air Bag Std

Road Visibility

HID Headlights Opt
Fog Lamps Opt
Electrochromic Rearview Mirror Opt
Intermittent Wipers Opt
Variable Inter. Wipers Opt
Rain Sensing Wipers Opt

Accident Prevention

Rear Parking Aid Opt
Handsfree Wireless Opt

Security

Alarm Opt
Anti-theft System Opt
Printable Version

2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

MINI Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

*MINI NEXT Warranty Program provides coverage for 2 years or 50,000 (whichever comes first) from the expiration date of the 4 year/50,000 mile MINI New Passenger Car Limited Warranty.

Although the MINI NEXT Certified Pre-Owned Limited Warranty is pretty comprehensive, it is not an extension of the MINI New Passenger Car Limited Warranty. The MINI NEXT Certified Pre-Owned Limited Warranty takes over when the original MINI New Passenger Car Limited Warranty expires and provides somewhat different coverage.

*See your local MINI Dealer for complete details about MINI NEXT Certified Pre-Owned Limited Warranty coverage.
Age/Mileage Eligibility Less than 5 yrs (60 months) and under 60,000 miles
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection Each MINI NEXT car has been inspected bonnet-to-boot by a MINI trained technician. We like to think of it as a massage. It is a process carried out by some of the most dedicated technicians in the business meant to refresh your MINI and ensure that the first feelings you experience out on the open road are ones of pure and utter goodness.
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance **Coverage for 2 years/unlimited miles starting at the expiration of the 4 year/unlimited mile MINI New Passenger Car Roadside Assistance Plan
Special Financing Yes
Transferrable Warranty The MINI NEXT Protection Plan is fully transferable from the original MINI NEXT purchaser or lessee to subsequent owner(s) or lessee(s)
Warranty Deductible $50

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

2009 MINI Cooper Convertible

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