Mini Cooper

Mini Cooper

MINI’s new Ray Line of models, which are exclusive to Italy, offers customers a fresh new option to enjoy the open-air feel of the Cooper Cabriolet .

Not only does the Cabrio Ray Line come with unique aesthetic modifications, but MINI also went ahead and gave minor tweaks to the interior, particularly the aluminum roll bar that has been deliberately lowered behind the headrests to give drivers an enhanced feeling of freedom as they breeze along the open roads.

But the most important modification done on the Cooper Cabrio Ray Line is giving the car even more visual depth, thanks in large part to the fluorescent staining that allows customers to choose from six different shades of neon. The colors range from Alien Green, Lemon Yellow, Flash White, Energy Pink, Vitamin Orange and Shocking Blue, each of provides even more spunk to a car already brimming with attitude.

In addition, MINI also added a new special badge on the car signifying its special edition designation, as well as a number of options and accessories, including chrome surrounds, a fluorescent hub cover, bonnet stripes with fluorescent piping, black caps on the bi-xenon headlamps, and a new set of 17” wheels that come in two different styles.

Just when you think that you’ve figured out how MINI’s mind works, they come out with something that reminds you just how unpredictable these guys are when it comes to their vehicles.

Say you’re taking a long road trip and you’re eyes are starting to become as heavy as sand bags. The prudent thing to do is to find the nearest inn or just park on the side of the road to catch a brief nap. In the case of the Swindon Roof Top Tent Edition, you can actually do the latter by climbing up to the car’s roof-top tent to get some shut eye.

You read that right; this special MINI Cooper model has a tent set-up on where the roof rack was once located.

Unbelievable as that sounds, it’s even more ridiculous to think that the tent actually has space for two people with a working ladder that allows you access to the roof of your car and inside your tent. And if that wasn’t enough, the roof tent has its own "tent box" that you can use to stow away your tent when you’re not using it. Add some pillows, some blankets, and some stuffed teddy bears, and you’re all set for nice and relaxing sleep inside your tent.

Then again, we’re not naive enough to think that this wasn’t just an elaborate - and brilliant - April Fool’s Day joke from the German automaker. If it was, then consider us buying it hook, line, and sinker. To be honest, with all of their special edition models, we’d truly believe this would be something they were capable of.

It’s hardly surprising anymore when we open our news feed every morning and see that MINI has introduced yet another special edition model to their line-up.

The newest special edition MINI Cooper has been christened the Rauno Aaltonen Edition. If you can’t come to grasp with the name, Rauno Aaltonen is a rally legend, having won, among other races, the prestigious 1967 Monte Carlo Rally. And now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, it’s time to check out what kind of digs MINI put on the Cooper Rauno Aaltonen to set it apart from the rest of its SE models.

On the outside, the car comes dressed with a Chili Red paint finish with a white air intake and matching stripes on the both the front and rear of the car. The eye-catching color scheme is also visible down the flanks and side scuttles and all the way to the checkerboard decals. Rounding out the exterior modifications are a fancy set of new 17" ‘Infinite Stream Spoke’ wheels.

Inside, the special edition Cooper Rauno Aaltonen received a new - and specially badged - leather-trimmed steering wheel. The speedometer also got tweaked and now comes with a red outer ring and an image of Aaltonen’s very own John Hancock.

The special edition program can be used on both the Cooper and Cooper S models, although the latter comes with an extra treat in the form of a one-day instructional session to drive on ice at the rally school owned by no less than Rauno himself and his son, Tino Aaltonen.

If you thought two special edition MINIs were enough, then you probably don’t know the German automaker all that well. Known for their bombastic flair and penchant for the out-of-the-box, MINI has released another special edition vehicle, following in the trail of the Baker Street and Bayswater models.

This one’s called the Highgate Convertible, and comes with plenty of special edition goodies befitting MINI’s quirky personality. For starters, the car has been painted with a new metallic hue - Iced Chocolate - and contrasted by brown and black bonnet stripes with blue edging. Should Iced Chocolate not suit your tastebuds, MINI’s offering two other color options with equally irrepressible names: Midnight Black and White Silver. The Highgate Convertible also receives a brown soft-top to go with a new set of 17" Double Cross light-alloy wheels.

Interior modifications for the special edition MINI Convertible includes leather seats dressed up in Dark Truffle with light contrast stitching and light blue piping. Stainless steel pedals are also offered, as is a Suntouched Brushed Alloy interior trim, and last but not least, MINI’s Chrome Line Interior package.

The Highgate Convertible is being offered on four trims of the Cooper: the standard version , the Cooper S , the Cooper D , and the Cooper SD . Sales for the special edition convertible begin in April 2012.

MINI has never been the shy type when it comes to rolling out special edition models, especially when certain situations call for it.

As an official sponsor of the 2012 London Olympic Games, you can’t come up with a more ideal situation for a special edition Cooper . Heck, they even made two of them.

Joining the Cooper Bayswater Special Edition is the Baker Street Special Edition, a unique trim of the popular Cooper line that pays homage to London hosting the 2012 Olympic Games. Similar to the Bayswater model, the Baker Street comes with plenty of unique trims, highlighted by a Rooftop Grey metallic finish with special racing stripes on the hood, black mirror caps, and a new set of 16" alloy wheels. Optional paint finishes - Pepper White and Midnight Black - are also part of the package.

Inside, the Baker Street model comes dressed with unique seating surfaces with a Cross Check Rooftop Grey color for the dashboard and door trim and diamond pattern, light grey contrast stitching for the floor mats, gearshift/selector lever, handbrake gaiters, and seat tags.

The Cooper Baker Street Edition is set to be available on the MINI One , Cooper , One D , and Cooper D models with sales expected to begin in Spring 2012.

UPDATE 02/29/12: The MINI Cooper Baker Street Special Edition will be one of a handful of models MINI will be bringing to the 2012 Geneva Motor Show. Stay tuned for any and more info regarding this special edition MINI Cooper.

With the 2012 London Olympics drawing closer and closer, official sponsors like MINI are starting to get their publicity machines going with hopes of squeezing every last ounce of marketing potential that goes with being an Olympics sponsor.

In the case of the German automaker, the marketing initiative involves the release of two bespoke MINI Cooper models: the Baker Street Edition and the Bayswater Edition.

The Bayswater Edition comes with an exclusive Kite Blue metallic finish with optional Midnight Black and Eclipse Grey finishes available for the Cooper S and SD models. In addition, the special edition "Bayswater" Cooper also received special racing stripes on the hood and side mirrors, a black-finished roof, and a new set of 17" wheels.

As for the interior, MINI dressed up the special edition Cooper’s seats in leather with exclusive colors and two-tone stitching on the gearshift/selector lever and handbrake gaiters. The car also has "Bayswater" lettering on the seat tags and door sills, a Piano Black cockpit trim, stainless steel pedals, and MINI’s standard Chrome Line Interior package.

In addition to the Cooper S and SD models, the Bayswater Edition will also be available for the Cooper and Cooper D models with a sale date pegged for early spring of 2012.

UPDATE 02/29/12: MINI recently announced their line-up for the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, and to no one’s surprise, the Cooper Bayswater Special Edition will be one of a handful of MINI models that will be headlining the company’s Geneva contingent. Nice to see these Cooper special editions get some shine under the Geneva spotlight.

The first downloadable package for the new Gran Turismo 5 became available back in October, followed by a second upgrade package for December, and now GT5 honchos have come up with a third update to to add to the collection. Think they’re overdoing it a bit? Yeah, so do we, but making money is always at the forefront of these decisions.

The new 2.03 update package includes 12 new home themes and wallpapers, better tire wear prediction in B-Spec races, and adjustments to the Chaparral 2J race car’s performance point index. Gamers can also choose between two different packages. Car Pack 3 includes models like the Nissan Leaf , the 2010 Aston Martin V12 Vantage , the 2011 Lamborghini Aventador LP 700-4 , the 2011 MINI Cooper S Countryman , and the classic Volkswagen Beetle. Price for this package is $5.99.

The second update package choice is called the Speed Test Pack and includes an 18.82 miles long track where you can test models like the Red Bull X2011 . The price for this package is $3.99.

One of the most talked about sports cars of the year was finally revealed a month ago, and since then, it’s been popping up everywhere, including in the popular racing franchise, Gran Turismo.

For fans of Gran Turismo 5, the thought of finally getting behind the wheel of a Toyota GT 86 is certainly worth the $3.99 price tag attached to the second round of downloadable content for the game.

Polyphony is set to release a Car Pack 2 program and Update 2.02 through the PSN Network just in time for Christmas. For the former, that means you can finally play a slew of new vehicles in the game, including the 2011 Mini Cooper S, the 2010 Volkswagen Golf VI R , the 2010 Volkswagen Scirocco R , and the 2012 Nissan GT-R Black Edition R35 . Other fixes and improvements that are part of the Car Pack 2 program include the ability to change wheels on Standard cars, free coupons that allow you to wash cars, change oil, overhaul your engine, or refresh the car body in GT Auto. The CP2 pack also allows you to see how the oil changes, aerodynamic parts, engine overhauls, and racing modifications will affect performance points and engine power in GT Auto. Meanwhile, in screens where the [Garage] and [Driver List] buttons are displayed in the A/B Spec events, Special Events, and Seasonal Events, pressing the ’square’ button will lead you to the [Garage], and pressing the ’triangle’ button will bring up the drivers list.

Then, there’s the Update 2.02, which is important to get as soon as possible if for only one - and only one - reason. By downloading the update, you finally get your hands on a 2012 Toyota GT 86 .

If there was ever a Mini Cooper that was on everyone’s wish list, it would be the John Cooper Works , but just because everyone wants it, doesn’t mean everyone can get it. Until now. Mini has come out with a solution to turn your standard Cooper S , Cooper SD , and Countryman into a true JCW without taking a trip to the tuning shop.

The new John Cooper Works Championship tuning package will allow any Mini fan to experience the allure of rallying by adding a more dynamic and sporty character to their car. It was created as a tribute to the John Cooper Works WRC that Dani Sordo currently drives in the WRC. It includes go-faster stripes, side scuttles in a special package design, additional spotlights up front (which are available in Chrome and Black), a"37" logo on the doors, and the famous John Cooper Works aerodynamics package in the color of the car. You can also opt for a new set of Double Spoke R129 alloy wheels in matte black.

Every automaker that has small car on their line-up has taken to modifying these models for B-Spec competition. We saw a couple of them introduced at the 2011 SEMA Auto Show - the Kia Rio and the Toyota Yaris come to mind - and now, it appears that one more will be making its debut at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show.
MINI USA, together with MINI of Charleston in South Carolina, have announced that a MINI Cooper Hardtop will formally enter B-Spec competition for the 2012 season.

"B-Spec racing is a great fit for MINI because the car is developed with racing heritage in mind and the races are run with vehicles very similar to those already sitting in the driveway,” said Jim McDowell, Vice President – MINI USA.

As race-spec models, the Cooper B-Spec will be completely overhauled to adhere to the standards and regulations of the B-Spec class. One of the most important modifications on the Cooper will be made on the interior, where almost all of the accessories and features of the road-going car will be stripped out and replaced by racing and safety equipment. Among the items that will be fitted into the Cooper B-Spec racer include a new Kirkey Intermediate Road Racing Seat, a Kirk Racing Roll Cage, Schroth Hybrid III Harnesses, Cage Nets, and Window Net.

As far as the engine is concerned, the Cooper B-Spec Racer will retain the 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine of the road car, together with the 121-horsepower and 114 lb/ft of torque numbers it comes with. Moreover, the suspension set-up of the race car will feature KW V1 Coilover Struts and Shocks/ Vorshlag front camber plates while the wheel/tire set-up will comprise of a new set of 15" Kosei K1 aluminum alloy wheels wrapped in Hoosier SM6 tires.

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