Mini Countryman review - Mini looks, but where's the Mini fun? - Mini Countryman design

Mini’s new SUV has grown up, but it’s lost the Mini fun factor along the way

Evo rating
Price
from £22,465

We’re blowing hot and cold on the new Countryman’s shape. From the front it’s an undoubted improvement on the previous model - the squared-off headlights and slimmer grille make the front look wider and less surprised-looking than before. From the front three-quarters it also looks a little more mature, and less barrel-sided than before.

But around the sides it all gets a bit messy, with the impression of blistered arches (but not the squat stance those typically entail), and at the back it’s a rather awkward shape, less distinctive than before and looking more like a regular Mini whose features have been inflated.

There’s no doubting at all which manufacturer has created the Countryman - and if you’re worried about people mistaking your Mini for anything else there’s still a huge range of personalisation options to drive the point home - but Mini’s products continue to look ever more contrived.

Rival products may also be an acquired taste - we’re thinking of the Toyota C-HR here - but at least designers at other firms have freedom to not base their cars on the design of a city car from 1959...

Most Popular

2022 Alpine A110 revealed – new A110 GT and sharper A110 S headline changes
Alpine A110 S – front tracking
Alpine A110

2022 Alpine A110 revealed – new A110 GT and sharper A110 S headline changes

Key updates for the range to further broaden the range and further focus top-spec A110 S
24 Nov 2021
Audi RS3 2021 review - Audi Sport set to take on AMG’s A45S
Audi RS3 review 2021
Audi RS3

Audi RS3 2021 review - Audi Sport set to take on AMG’s A45S

Audi’s new RS3 hyper hatch finally gets the technology to take on AMG’s range-topper
22 Nov 2021
Car pictures of the week
Lotus Carlton evo Icon – cornering 1
Lotus

Car pictures of the week

We go behind the lens on our latest evo Icon photoshoot in this week’s gallery
26 Nov 2021