Is the Mini Cooper reliable?

The Mini Cooper is loved both by older generations who remember the heady days of the 60's and 70's, as well as a whole new group of younger fans who have fallen in love with it's history and looks as a truly iconic British brand. But is it as reliable as it could be?

Currently owned by BMW who have not always been renowned for reliability, the Mini continues to grow in popularity and these cars can be seen literally everywhere when you are out and about, so let's take a look at whether this is a brand that can be trusted.

Not the worst - but definitely not the best

The Mini doesn't come out as the worst offender in lists of unreliable cars, but it is on some of them, and there have been particular issues that owners have had to contend with, not least faulty clutches and also including engines being by far the most commonly reported problem in about 30% of cases. Many engine problems included replacement hydraulic tappets or timing chains that needed tensioning, and costs could be fairly high in some cases.

Warranty relief

Many customers with warranties said the warranty had paid for itself several times over with the amount of repairs needed on their vehicles which would have run into a few thousand pounds a year without this in place in some cases. Owners on forums have recommended that where possible new buyers should ensure they get a warranty, and even better - make sure it is an extended one if at all possible!

Older Minis

There were particular problems reported with older models such as water leaks that then caused electrical damage, and in the case of older or second-hand vehicles they are often out of warranty which means the costs can soon mount up. There have also been some recalls such as one with 2016 models involving radiator thermometers. Another problem for the Mini has been that of acquiring the parts, as in some cases the German suppliers ran out and customers had to wait for an extra long period until their vehicle was fixed.

Conversely, many owners have said that the Mini is a fun vehicle that they enjoy driving, that has a very distinctive look and that the car attracts many compliments. However, although the Mini Cooper is not classed as the most unreliable car on the road, there are certain issues that owners may have to contend with on a regular basis. Therefore, for those thinking of buying one the message that comes through loud and clear is to make sure you get a warranty as extra security!

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