You can’t help but conclude, on acquainting yourself with the established players in the market segment that the new Mini Convertible is entering, that buyers of downsized drop-tops aren’t a very demanding bunch.
There is evidence that people will pay close to £20,000 for cars that are slow, unresponsive and impractical and feel flimsy and imprecise on the road – provided they come with a roof that lets the sunshine in and a must-have badge on their bonnet.
Against that background, BMW could have got away with ‘phoning one in’ with this car – but to its credit, it hasn’t.
The Mini Convertible feels like a much better-engineered car than it needs to be, one of integrity and attention to detail, improved significantly over the car it replaces.
It opens up the vivacious Mini driving experience to the elements without compromising it. And given that open really does mean open with this car and doesn’t with most of its rivals, that’s no mean feat.
However, for the facelift we think Mini need to address the gearing by giving it a shorter final drive, make the seats comfier, thicker and softer and to further refine and fettle the steering set-up.