Skip advert
Advertisement
In-depth reviews

Mini Cooper S review – engine, gearbox and technical specs

2-litre four-cylinder engines are larger than the class norm, but deliver good power and torque through six-speed manual and seven-speed DCT gearboxes

Evo rating

While 1.6-litre (and more recently 1.5-litre) engines have become the norm for hot hatch superminis, and indeed formed the basis of the last two generations of Cooper S, the current model instead uses a 2-litre unit.

Naturally, this is an economies of scale choice as much as it is to boost performance – the 2-litre, four-cylinder ‘B48’ power plant is used widely throughout the BMW empire in various states of tune, from this Mini through various 3-series and, amusingly, the four-cylinder variant of the Toyota Supra.

Advertisement - Article continues below

But it does mean extracting the S’s 189bhp output at 4700rpm is no great hardship when there are 302bhp variants floating around the group. Likewise, the larger unit is good for torque; 221lb ft of it, from a low 1250rpm, and while a 1205kg kerb weight is towards the upper end of this class, it’s not enough to hold the car back too badly.

Two transmissions are offered: a six-speed manual, and a seven-speed dual-clutch. Both drive the front wheels alone, and the latter naturally offers paddles behind the steering wheel. The behaviour of the engine, and in the auto’s case, the engine and transmission, is adjusted depending on the driving mode selected – the Cooper S has Green, Mid, and Sport options, with a corresponding change in throttle response and gearshift behaviour.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement

Most Popular

Alfa Romeo 4C – the car world's greatest misses
Alfa Romeo 4C
Features

Alfa Romeo 4C – the car world's greatest misses

It had stunning looks and promising hardware, but somehow the 4C didn’t add up to the sum of its parts
20 Jun 2024
Bugatti Tourbillon revealed – the 1775bhp, V16-engined Chiron successor is here
Bugatti Tourbillon – front
News

Bugatti Tourbillon revealed – the 1775bhp, V16-engined Chiron successor is here

With a naturally aspirated V16, a new carbon chassis and a 273mph top speed Bugatti’s latest hypercar has the GMA T.50 in its sights
20 Jun 2024
Cupra Leon Estate VZ3 2024 review – Cupra’s rival to the Mercedes-AMG CLA35 Shooting Brake
CUPRA_LEON_SP_CENTURY_BRONCE_DINAMIC_002_fe5f5r.jpg
Reviews

Cupra Leon Estate VZ3 2024 review – Cupra’s rival to the Mercedes-AMG CLA35 Shooting Brake

The Cupra Leon has been updated to match its Golf GTI and Audi S3 cousins, bringing more power, a refreshed design and a welcome dynamic edge to the h…
23 Jun 2024