Mini has been steadily going against its namesake and making its cars slightly larger and more marketable to families. Recently, the British automaker announced a completely redesigned Countryman, which will boast larger dimensions, a roomier cabin, and a ton of new features.
While the new Countryman will be 7.8 inches longer and 1.3 inches wider than the current model, its basic look will be very familiar. It will feature all the signature Mini design cues, but will have plenty of updated details like new headlights, restyled taillights, squarer shoulders and roofline, larger doors, and new body lines to align it with the rest of the current lineup.
Inside, the larger body will open up additional room for passengers and cargo. The rear-seat passengers will get an extra 3.8 inches of legroom, 1.9 inches of shoulder room, and 0.8 inches of headroom. Up front, legroom will remain unchanged, but headroom will grow by 0.6 inches and shoulder room grows by 2 inches. Base cargo room jumps by 1 cubic foot to 17.6 cubes and max cargo room increases by 5.4 cubes to 47.6 cubic feet. Accessing this cargo room will be easier than ever thanks to its new power tailgate.
There will also be some new features that roll in for the new year. These will include a fold-out picnic bench, the Mini Country Timer, the Mini Connected App, and the Mini Find Mate. The cabin will also have a completely new look that is as Mini as ever. The stylistic changes will include new seats, a new steering wheel, vertical air vents that almost mimic the taillights, a repositioned tach that now sits behind the steering wheel, a new-look dash, and much more.
In the powertrain department, the Countryman will undergo a complete redo. It will get a new base 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine that will crank out 134 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque. The S trim will get a new 2-liter turbo engine with 189 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque.
The base Countryman will be available with several drivetrain setups, including a six-speed auto transmission with front-wheel drive, an eight-speed auto with all-wheel drive, or a six-speed manual transmission with front- or all-wheel drive. The S trim, also available with front- or all-wheel drive, will be available with a six-speed manual or an eight-speed auto.
Another huge addition to the 2017 Mini Cooper Countryman will be a new plug-in hybrid model, which will be known as the Cooper S E Countryman ALL4. This model will use the 134-horsepower three-cylinder engine and an 87-horsepower electric motor for a total system output of 221 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque. Power will travel to all four wheels and delivers a 0-to-60 sprint time of 6.8 seconds, making it the quickest of the non-John Cooper Works Cooper Countryman models. On top of being quick, this hybrid will travel up to 24 miles in EV mode and reaches speeds of 77 mph on electricity only.
The current Mini Cooper Countryman did well in IIHS testing with “Good” ratings across the board. It did not, however, earn the Top Safety Pick designation as it lacked a front-crash prevention system. In the new model year, this will be a thing of the past, thanks to the optional MINI Driving Assistant, which will include collision warning with city braking function, camera-based adaptive cruise control, pedestrian warning with initial brake function, high beam assistant, and road sign detection.
Pricing & Release Date
The 2017 Mini Cooper Countryman won’t reach dealerships until February 2017, so pricing details won’t be available for a little while. We do, however, expect to see a price hike from the current model’s pricing, which ranges from $23,600 to $36,200 (destination fees included).
Stay tuned for updates as they become available.
Pictured: 2017 Countryman