What is it?
The Mini Cooper Convertible: an already desirable small car, you or I may think, victim of a misguided attempt at garnering even more must-have status. But to owners of the last two generations of Mini Convertible, the Mini's conversion to roofless wonder probably looked like a stroke of genius - and the result sold in plentiful numbers in the UK. No surprise, then, that the German-owned British marque is at it again.
And having experimented with the Mini Roadster during the car’s last big model generation, the firm won’t be looking to steal the limelight away from its original rag-top fashion icon this time around. If you want open-air motoring in a Mini, the Convertible will be the only way to get it. And, unlike in most of the Mini’s ‘convertible’ rivals, you get a proper wind-in-the-fringe experience here, courtesy of a motorised folding cloth roof that furls all the way back, leaving absolutely no pillars or roof rails rearwards of the windscreen to come between you and the outside world.
Mini offers a fulsome range of petrol and diesel engines to choose from, most of which combine with either manual or automatic gearboxes. It’s the entry-level 1.5-litre turbo petrol Cooper that interests us here, providing a peppy 134bhp, a pragmatic 57.6mpg and a tempting sub-£19,000 departure point for ownership.