The new Mini Cooper S is the last of its kind

The Mini's final outing as a combustion-engined hatch is being led by a 201bhp, 150mph Cooper S

The era of petrol-powered hot hatchbacks is nearing its end. Fleet-average emissions regulations, engine development costs and slim profit margins mean that some of our favourite models have been phased out, but Mini has other ideas. Meet the new Cooper S – a 201bhp hot supermini that arrives in the midst of Mini’s transition to all-electric. 

The Cooper S and an entry-level Cooper C will be sold alongside EV equivalents, sporting similar designs but entirely different underpinnings. Where the electric version rides on a bespoke architecture jointly developed by BMW and Chinese firm Great Wall, petrol models get an ICE-specific platform. 

Mini claims that the Cooper’s chassis has been set up to deliver ‘go-kart handling’ (whatever that means), and the S model gets a power bump over its predecessor courtesy of an updated 2-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Now generating 201bhp and 221lb ft of torque, it propels the hatch from 0-62mph in 6.6sec and on to a 150mph top speed. Sadly, neither the Cooper C or Cooper S are offered with a manual gearbox, with Mini’s DTC automatic coming as standard. 

As before, the base hatch gets a 1.5-litre turbocharged triple, this time with 154bhp and 170lb ft of torque. Its 7.7sec 0-62mph time falls four tenths shy of the electric Cooper E, but the Cooper C counters with a higher 139mph top speed. 

The new model’s short bonnet, round headlights and a floating roof are classic Mini design cues. Visually, it’s busier than the EV version thanks to the addition of plastic wheel arch trims and front grille openings, but Mini has removed all exterior chrome trim for a cleaner look than its predecessor.

The interior, meanwhile, offers an enormous leap forward in tech, centred around a 24cm circular OLED touchscreen mounted to the dash. This runs Mini’s Operating System 9 infotainment software, which features a personal voice assistance, configurable UI themes and a widget-based menu system. The climate controls are embedded in the touchscreen, but they are at least a permanent fixture on the lower half of the display. 

The Cooper C costs from £22,300, undercutting the outgoing Cooper Classic by £635. The Cooper S gets a £210 price bump over its predecessor at £26,700, with first deliveries scheduled for spring.

Recommended

Renault Sport Mégane RS Trophy‑R – the car world's greatest misses
Renault Sport Mégane RS Trophy‑R
Features

Renault Sport Mégane RS Trophy‑R – the car world's greatest misses

Targeting a Nürburgring lap record proved the undoing of a potentially all-time-great hot hatch
29 Feb 2024
Toyota GR Yaris Gen 2 2024 review – first drive of the production ready hot hatch
Toyota GR Yaris – front
Reviews

Toyota GR Yaris Gen 2 2024 review – first drive of the production ready hot hatch

We've driven a prototype GR Yaris Gen 2 on track, now we've driven a production car on ice. Is it still looking good for the ultimate supermini?
27 Feb 2024
New Alpine A290: latest details on the Renault 5's hot hatch cousin
Alpine A290 concept
Features

New Alpine A290: latest details on the Renault 5's hot hatch cousin

Good news for fans of accessible performance, as Alpine reveals more details about its forthcoming EV hot hatch, the A290
26 Feb 2024
Hyundai i30 N (2018 - 2024) review
Hyundai i30 N 22 – front cornering
In-depth reviews

Hyundai i30 N (2018 - 2024) review

The i30 N sits at the top of a very talented field. With a truly engaging chassis and a punchy powertrain, it's a fantastic thing to drive
23 Feb 2024

Most Popular

Toyota GR Yaris Gen 2 2024 review – first drive of the production ready hot hatch
Toyota GR Yaris – front
Reviews

Toyota GR Yaris Gen 2 2024 review – first drive of the production ready hot hatch

We've driven a prototype GR Yaris Gen 2 on track, now we've driven a production car on ice. Is it still looking good for the ultimate supermini?
27 Feb 2024
New Alpine A290: latest details on the Renault 5's hot hatch cousin
Alpine A290 concept
Features

New Alpine A290: latest details on the Renault 5's hot hatch cousin

Good news for fans of accessible performance, as Alpine reveals more details about its forthcoming EV hot hatch, the A290
26 Feb 2024
Hyundai i30 N and i20 N axed
Hyundai i30 N and i20 N
News

Hyundai i30 N and i20 N axed

Production of petrol-powered Hyundai N hot hatches has come to an end in Europe, with electric N models picking up the baton
23 Feb 2024