/2009 MINI Cabrio Mark II

2009 MINI Cabrio Mark II

2009 mini cooper cabrio 21 at 2009 MINI Cabrio Mark II

BMW released details of second generation MINI Convertible ahead of its debut in January next year. It’s called the new version, but even a MINI expert will struggle to tell the differences! However it comes in Cooper and Cooper S variants.

2009 mini cooper cabrio 14 at 2009 MINI Cabrio Mark II

Cooper Cabrio is powered by a 1.6 liter engine developing 88 kW/120 hp and 160 Nm/118 lb-ft of torque at with The top speed of 198 km/h (123 mph) and the 0-100 time of 9.8 sec. While Cooper S benefits from a Twin-Scroll turbocharger and direct fuel injection on the same engine which bumps up the power to 128 kW/175 hp and 240 Nm/177 lb-ft of torque. It is good for 222 km/h (138 mph) top speed and 0-100 time of 7.4 secs.  Check below for more details…

2009 mini cooper cabrio 12 at 2009 MINI Cabrio Mark II

MINI Press Release :

Mini Cooper Press Release:

– New edition of the highly successful open four-seater from Oxford accounting for worldwide sales of some 164,000 units. Continuation of the third body version within the MINI model family. The new MINI Convertible symbolises the thrill of motoring in the open air and bears out the unmistakable style of the MINI brand. Moving up to an even higher standard than on the former model, the unique features of the MINI Cabrio in its segment in terms of design, premium quality, handling, performance, efficiency and functionality have been appropriately enhanced and improved to perfection.

– Evolutionary development of the car’s design: The body with two doors and a soft roof including a separate sliding roof function ensures unique, unmatched proportions, sleek, horizontal lines, and truly individual style. Design language typical of the brand, design features and proportions clearly making the new model a genuine, fully-fledged member of the MINI product family.

Refined, sophisticated overall appearance highlighting the stretched silhouette and ensuring enhanced presence from both front and rear. Sophisticated, beautifully modelled body surfaces, roadster-like flair ensured by the low roofline, rollover safety bar hidden away out of sight. Front and rear light design as on the current MINI models. Inner-mounted four-pivot joints for the luggage compartment lid ensure a harmonious and smooth look giving even greater emphasis to the wide rear end.

Electrohydraulic operation of the roof including sliding roof function featured as standard. Option to open and close the soft top while driving at a speed of up to 30 km/h or 20 mph. Optional Always-Open Timer as a special feature determining the time spent travelling with the roof down. Even wider range of paintwork colours, roof colours, wheel rims, upholstery and interior trim providing even greater choice in customising the car. Model-specific range of optional extras and special equipment.

– Newly developed, electromechanically operated rollover bar behind the rear seats, activated by the car’s central safety electronics in the event of a possible rollover. The innovative, absolutely unique principle of a single-piece safety bar allows optimum visibility to the rear and facilitates visibility to the side. A further advantage is the option to integrate an exceptionally large through-loading storage option between the luggage and passenger compartments.

– Outstanding functionality ensured by the flexible storage concept. Easy-load system providing an even larger opening into the luggage compartment, rear seat backrests folding down individually and lockable in position, parcel shelf pivoting fastening in two positions, as required. Luggage compartment capacity increased to 125 litres (+5) (4.38 cu ft) with the roof open, 170 litres (+5) (5.95 cu ft) with the roof closed, and 660 litres (+55) (23.10 cu ft) with the rear-seat backrest folded down.

– New generation of four-cylinder petrol engines with Twin-Scroll turbochargers or fully variable valve management. Engine capacity 1,598 cc, max output 88 kW/120 hp (MINI Cooper Convertible) and 128 kW/175 hp (MINI Cooper S Convertible). Both engine variants with a wide range of technical features serving to optimise both fuel economy and emissions: Auto Start Stop, Brake Energy Regeneration, gearshift point indicator.

– Front-wheel drive, go-kart feeling typical of the brand with refined suspension technology tailored specifically to the MINI Convertible. Electromechanical Power Steering (EPS). Brake system with anti-lock brakes (ABS), Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD), Cornering Brake Control (CBC) and Brake Assistant as well as Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) including Start-Off Assistant featured as standard. Dynamic Traction Control (DTC) including electronically controlled limited-slip differential function on the drive wheels available as an option.

– Crash-optimised body structure with newly conceived floorpan and A-pillars and side-sills appropriately reinforced for a convertible. Body stiffness further improved over the former model, with a reduction in vehicle weight by 10 kg or 22 lb. Three-point inertia-reel seat belts on all seats, with belt latch tensioners and belt force limiters at the front, frontal airbags, head/thorax airbags at the side integrated in the seat backrest, rollover sensor master-minding the rollover safety system, airbags and belt letch tensioners opti-mised in their function. Runflat tyres and Tyre Defect Indicator.

– Engine variants:
MINI Cooper S Convertible:
Four-cylinder petrol engine with Twin-Scroll turbocharger and direct fuel injection.
Capacity: 1,598 cc, max output: 128 kW/175 hp at 5,500 rpm.
Max torque: 240 Nm/177 lb-ft from 1,600–5,000 rpm
(260 Nm/192 lb-ft with Overboost).
Acceleration 0–100 km/h: 7.4 sec, Top speed: 222 km/h (138 mph).
Average fuel consumption to EU standard:
6.4 litres/100 km (equal to 44.1 mpg imp),
CO2 rating: 153 g/km.

– MINI Cooper Convertible:
Four-cylinder petrol engine with fully variable valve management based on the BMW Group’s VALVETRONIC technology.
Capacity: 1,598 cc, max output: 88 kW/120 hp at 6,000 rpm.
Max torque: 160 Nm/118 lb-ft at 4,250 rpm.
Acceleration (0–100 km/h): 9.8 sec, Top speed: 198 km/h (123 mph).
Average fuel consumption to EU standard:
5.7 litres/100 km (equal to 49.6 mpg imp),
CO2 rating: 137 g/km.

Consistently Open: The new MINI Convertible.

The driving pleasure and individual style so typical of the MINI are now being combined once again with all the flair and refreshment of driving in the open air, the new MINI Cabrio offering this unique rendition of motoring freedom in particularly intense style.

With its design improved in an evolutionary process and an even wider range of practical functions, with the most advanced and sophisticated suspension technology, even more powerful and, at the same time, economic engines, and with optimised safety technology, the new version of the open-air four-seater MINI consistently raises its strengths and qualities to an even higher level.

At the same time new and highly attractive colour variants as well as equipment features add an additional touch of style and class. And last but certainly not least, supreme quality of materials and finish enhances the unique position of the MINI Convertible as the only open premium car in its segment.

The new MINI Convertible will make its world debut at the North American International Auto Show 2009 in Detroit. Orders however for the MINI Cabrio are being taken now; the price in Germany for the MINI Cooper Convertible is 22.500 € and for the MINI Cooper S Convertible 26.500 €. Delivery of the first MINI Convertibles will begin on 28 March 2009.

The occupants are safely protected from wind and weather also in the new MINI Convertible by the high-quality soft top with its integrated sliding roof function. Even while driving at a speed of up to 30 km/h or 20 mph, the soft top folds back fully automatically in a complete process within just 15 seconds, giving the new MINI Convertible its true purpose and quality: This is a car simply begging for driving in the open air at any time of the year, symbolising this challenge to the driver through the optionally available, absolutely unique Always-Open Timer next to the rev counter.

This unprecedented instrument shows the driver and passengers the time they have spent driving with the roof down – motivating the driver to really enjoy the thrill of open-air motoring as frequently as possible. The new MINI Cabrio offers outstanding everyday driving qualities through the Easy-Load Function, the rear-seat backrest folding down individually on either side, as well as the unusually large through-loading between the luggage and passenger compartment, increasing luggage capacity to an astounding 660 litres or 23.10 cu ft.

This variability quite unique in the convertible segment is made possible by the innovative design and construction of the rollbar: The new MINI Convertible comes with a single-piece rollbar behind the rear seats extending across the entire interior width of the car, not obstructing the driver’s line of visibility in any way when looking to the rear, and moving up automatically only in the event of an imminent rollover. The new MINI Convertible is entering the market in two engine variants. The MINI Cooper Convertible offers sporting qualities right from the start with its 1.6-litre four-cylinder power unit featuring fully variable valve management for maximum output of 88 kW/120 hp at 6,000 rpm.

The MINI Cooper S Convertible is even more dynamic and performance-oriented, its 1.6-litre four-cylinder with a Twin-Scroll turbocharger and direct gasoline injection delivering 128 kW/175 hp at an engine speed of 5,500 rpm and thus providing a particularly refreshing feeling of power and dynamic performance. Both engine variants come as standard with the latest technologies for reducing both fuel consumption and emissions, including Brake Energy Regeneration as well as Auto Start Stop and a gearshift point indicator on the manual gearbox models.

Benefiting from this extremely efficient drive technology, fuel consumption and CO2 emissions on the new MINI Convertible are reduced by up to 23 per cent compared with the cars’ respective predecessors. From the start the MINI Cooper S Convertible and the MINI Cooper Convertible are available as an alternative to the six-speed manual gearbox featured as standard with optional six-speed automatic transmission. At the same time the new MINI Cabrio owes its fascinating handling to suspension technology significantly enhanced and upgraded over the former model. Indeed, thanks to sophisticated wheel suspension, extremely precise electromechanical power steering, the powerful brake system and DSC Dynamic Stability Control featured as standard, the open-air MINI combines supreme agility with equally exemplary safety all round.

Design: MINI all the way, open-air motoring without compromises, and unique proportions. The design of the MINI Convertible is the result of an evolutionary development process. Compared with the former model, the new MINI Convertible is clearly more mature at very first sight, the beautifully chiselled body surfaces giving the new MINI Convertible an even more powerful and dynamic look. The stretched side view exudes an even greater sense of sporting performance, the rollbar almost entirely concealed from sight boasting a silhouette clearly inspired by the classic roadster with the roof down. A chrome bar extending round the entire body horizontally at shoulder level connects the body of the car as such with the roof and windows. The windscreen standing upright underlines the character of this uncompromising open-air performer not only through its looks, with the driver and front passenger quite literally sitting in the open air whenever the roof is down.

The open-air version of the brand is unmistakably a MINI at very first sight. The proportions of the car with short overhangs front and rear, larger wheel cut-outs, the height of the waistline and numerous design features again characteristic of the brand clearly reveal that this is a genuine MINI in every respect. The entire front view is likewise MINI all the way, including the specific features distinguishing the MINI Cooper S Convertible from the MINI Cooper Convertible. Both models come with a hexagon radiator grille and large round headlights with integrated direction indicators in typical MINI style, forming one complete, self-contained element. The MINI Cooper S Convertible is nevertheless clearly recognisable by its Powerdome rising up 20 millimetres or almost 0.8″, the stylised opening on the engine compartment lid, and the hexagonal grid pattern on the radiator grille as well as the extra-large lower air intake scoop. On the MINI Cooper Convertible the radiator grille boasts a chrome frame and three horizontal, chrome-plated bars. The edges on the lower air intake scoop flow slightly upwards, with both the MINI Cooper S Convertible and the MINI Cooper Convertible featuring positioning light units on either side of the lower air intake also housing the foglamps available as an option.

Like the front-end design, the rear view of the new MINI Cabrio offers a clear enhancement of the car’s visual presence. The entire rear section is characterised by horizontal lines running parallel to one another, creating the softly flowing “steps” also to be admired on the MINI Hatch in emphasising the width of the car.

The rear lid of the new MINI Convertible opening up to the bottom comes with hinges mounted on the inside, giving the entire rear section a smooth and homogeneous surface again emphasising the powerful look of the rear end.

Standing upright in position, the rear lights are somewhat larger than on the former model. Again as on the MINI Hatch, they are surrounded by chrome frames disconnected from the lights themselves and therefore emanating a particular touch of class and style.

The particularly sporting character of the MINI Cooper S Convertible is emphasised further at the rear by dual tailpipes in the middle, the large air intake in the rear dam, and the two-piece rear foglamp. Optimised all-round visibility ensured by even larger side windows and the retractable rollbar. The soft roof of the new MINI Convertible stands out in particular through its unique design and very practical functionality. With the roof closed the MINI Convertible comes with the proportions typical of the car, the sporting look being additionally emphasised by the low roofline. The high-quality, absolutely wind-tight and very hard-wearing textile material rests firmly on the roof bars made of steel and aluminium, thus avoiding virtually any change in shape or bulging effect even at high speeds.

All-round visibility with the roof closed further improved over the former model results, first, from the slightly larger side windows and, second, from the newly conceived, retractable rollbar. This single-piece rollbar moving up and down as required runs across the entire width of the car just below the rear headrests, thus offering the driver unrestricted visibility without any obstruction to the rear. The rear window is connected to the soft top by seals on the inside, thus closing flush with the surface of the roof. Made of glass, the rear window may be heated electrically whenever required to avoid any misting or icing effect. And as an option, finally, the new MINI Cabrio is also available with a heated windscreen.

Soft roof with sliding roof function – also for convenient use while driving.

The soft roof opens and closes completely within just 15 seconds, naturally with fully automatic, electrohydraulic control. After the roof has opened, it folds down snugly into the rear end of the car, the particularly precise folding pattern serving to efficiently remove any moisture and at the same time avoid any pressure spots or friction, which might otherwise cause excessive wear or discoloration of the material. And since the outer skin of the open roof faces upwards, there is no need for a tonneau cover providing particular protection.

The opening and closing mechanism is activated by a toggle switch on the front roof frame in typical MINI design. In order to ensure the spontaneous pleasure of open-air motoring or respond quickly to a sudden downpour, the opening and closing process may be initiated at road speeds of up to 30 km/h or 20 mph. A further point is that the driver is able to open the soft top before setting out by means of the remote control integrated in the ignition key.

The window bars and side windows on the MINI Convertible are retracted electrically as soon as the soft roof starts to move back, again in a fully automated process. The closing process then takes place in exactly the opposite order.

Both processes – opening and closing – are performed in a continuous flow, as long as the driver keeps the switch on the roof frame or the button on the remote control pressed down. This also allows him to interrupt the movement of the soft roof in any position. By briefly pressing a separate button, the driver is also able to lower the four side windows together while the roof remains closed.

The unique folding roof function on the new MINI Convertible is activated completely by electric power. In this case the front section of the soft top moves back by up to 40 centimetres or approximately 16 inches, again by pressing the switch on the front roof frame. A further benefit is that the driver and occupants are able to enjoy this particular pleasure of driving with a sliding roof not only in city traffic, since the sliding roof function may be activated also at higher speeds of up to 120 km/h or 75 mph.

Guarantee for unique driving pleasure: the latest generation of four-cylinder power units.

Muscular, fast-revving and extremely efficient – these are the fortes of the two four-cylinder petrol engines available in the new MINI Convertible upon its entry into the market. Indeed, thanks to these engines the generation change on the open-air MINI comes with an enormous increase in driving pleasure and, at the same time, significant progress in all-round economy. More than ever before, therefore, the MINI Cooper S Convertible and the MINI Cooper Convertible stand out as absolute exceptions in their segment. Both models offer not only the highest level of driving pleasure, but also the best standard of fuel economy and emission management in relation to their power and performance.

Both power units are made of light alloy and come with a displacement of 1,598 cc, featuring exactly the same distance between cylinders, as well as the same bore and stroke. At the same time they naturally benefit from all the know-how of the BMW Group in engine development and high-tech carried over from motorsport.

The four-cylinder power units are built at the BMW Group’s Hams Hall Engine Plant in Great Britain, from where they go to the MINI Plant in Oxford, which also builds the MINI Cabrio . Compared with the former model, both engines are fitted in the engine bay of the MINI Convertible at an angle of 180°, with the exhaust side now facing to the front.

Further common features shared by both the turbocharged and natural-aspiration power unit are the two-piece bedplate structure of the crankcase as a trendsetting technology carried over from motorsport as well as the cylinder block and bearing housing made of a special aluminium alloy on both engines. And last but not least, integration of the chain box in the bearing housing saves weight, improves the car’s acoustics, and reduces the number of components.

MINI Cooper S Convertible: superior power and performance thanks to the Twin-Scroll turbocharger and direct gasoline injection.

The new MINI Cooper S Convertible offers a more intense and thrilling experience of performance than ever before. As the more powerful of the two new models, the MINI Cooper S Convertible comes with a 1.6-litre four-cylinder delivering no less than 128 kW/175 hp at 5,500 rpm with the help of a Twin-Scroll turbocharger and direct gasoline injection. In the range between 1,600 and 5,000 rpm, this unique power unit develops maximum torque of no less than 240 Newton-metres or 177 lb ft, further increased briefly by the Overboost function to 260 Newton-metres or 192 lb ft.

The Twin-Scroll turbocharger is particularly effective in boosting power and performance on the MINI Cooper S Convertible. The ducts of two cylinders at a time are separated from one another in the exhaust manifold and the turbocharger, serving to reduce exhaust gas counterpressure at low engine speeds in order to capitalise on the dynamic effect of the pulsating gas columns in the manifold. This effect enhances turbocharger response and ensures a particularly spontaneous build-up of engine power.

As a result, the MINI Cooper S Convertible is virtually free of the “turbo gap” when accelerating so typical of a conventional turbocharged engine. Acceleration to 100 km/h comes in just 7.4 seconds, engine flexibility and response is truly impressive also at high speeds, and the top speed of the car is an equally impressive 222 km/h or 138 mph.

The turbocharged four-cylinder featured in the MINI Cooper S Convertible benefits from the extra power of direct fuel injection applying the common-rail principle. The stainless-steel common rail linking all cylinders is filled with fuel by a high-pressure pump at the rear-end of the intake camshaft. Injection valves positioned at the side of the cylinder head then deliver fuel within fractions of a second and in an exact dose from the common rail directly to the combustion chamber. Four valve pockets and a combustion chamber trough positioned precisely in the middle of each piston help to provide optimum stratification of the homogeneous fuel/air mixture.

With this combination of a Twin-Scroll turbocharger and direct fuel injection, the new MINI Cooper S Convertible offers remarkable performance data in several respects: Specific output of the engine is approximately 110 hp per litre and fuel consumption in the EU test cycle is 6.4 litres/100 kilometres (equal to 44.1 mpg imp), with a CO2 rating of 153 grams per kilometre.

MINI Cooper Convertible: fully variable valve management for fresh performance.

Likewise displacing 1.6 litres, the normal-aspiration power unit in the new MINI Cooper Convertible combines fresh and sporting performance with truly outstanding economy. In this case maximum output of 88 kW/120 hp comes at 6,000 rpm, torque peaking at 160 Newton-metres or 118 lb-ft at 4,250 rpm. The innovative technical features of this four-cylinder include fully variable valve management developed on the basis of the BMW Group’s unique VALVETRONIC technology. The particular forte of this valve control concept is that the intake valve lift and the valve opening period are adjusted to the driver’s respective power and performance requirements within fractions of a second. To achieve this superiority in engine control, the camshaft acts on the valves not directly via a follower arm, but rather through an additional intermediate lever where the pivot point is adjusted infinitely by an electrically driven eccentric shaft.

Changing over from minimum to maximum lift takes only about 300 milli-seconds – and at the same time valve timing is varied on both the intake and exhaust side as a function of engine speed. This adjustment process is again infinite, with valve timing set to current driving conditions likewise within 300 milliseconds at the very most.

Interacting with one another, variable valve management and engine speed-related camshaft control serve to optimise both the torque curve and power output. Hence, the engine of the MINI Cooper Convertible delivers superior torque right from the start at low speeds, while developing significantly more power than a conventional engine at high revs.

A further advantage offered by both technologies is the significant reduction of fuel consumption: While the new MINI Cooper Convertible accelerates to 100 km/h in 9.8 seconds and reaches a top-speed of 198 km/h or 123 mph, fuel consumption in the EU test cycle is a mere 5.7 litres/100 kilometres (equal to 49.6 mpg imp) and the engine’s CO2 rating is just 137 grams per kilometre.

Light, innovative, efficient: most advanced drive technology for reduced fuel consumption and emissions. Both engines featured in the new MINI Convertible are fitted crosswise at the front and convey their superior power to the front wheels. Composite – instead of cast – camshafts and the crankshaft optimised for weight are part of the lightweight concept boasted by these all-aluminium power units.

Fuel consumption is further optimised by an oil pump with volume flow control and an electronically activated water pump for the coolant circuit. And last but not least in this context, both the MINI Cooper S Convertible and the MINI Cooper Convertible come as standard with the latest innovations for reducing both fuel consumption and emissions.

These innovations serve to optimise engine efficiency and at the same time enhance the standard of driving pleasure. A wonderful example in this context is Brake Energy Regeneration where the power of the engine is converted primarily into actual drive power and electricity is generated for the car’s on-board network only when the car is actually moving in overrun or when the driver applies the brakes. To achieve this effect, the generator is automatically disconnected while the engine is pulling the car, the power otherwise diverted to other energy-consuming functions on a conventional car now kept available for even faster and more dynamic acceleration. An adequate supply of electric power to the on-board network is nevertheless ensured at all times, the generator being reactivated as soon as the MINI Convertible changes to overrun or when the driver applies the brakes.

The Auto Start Stop function serves to significantly reduce idle speed phases on all manual gearbox versions of the MINI Cabrio . Depending on various parameters such as ambient and engine temperature as well as the battery charge level, this trendsetting system switches off the engine automatically whenever it is not required, for example when stopping at the traffic lights, once the driver moves the gear lever to neutral and takes his foot off the clutch pedal. Then, to start the engine again, all the driver has to do is press down the clutch pedal, the engine automatically re-starting without the slightest delay.

The gearshift point indicator offers additional support in reducing fuel consumption and emissions. Thanks to this function again featured as standard, the driver of a manual gearbox MINI Convertible consistently benefits from the most efficient style of motoring. The engine’s electronic control unit permanently analyses engine speed, driving conditions and the position of the gas pedal, then determining the most appropriate gear in accordance with this data. So as soon as it is appropriate to shift gears, an arrow symbol appears in the Cockpit Display beneath the rev counter and the ideal gear is shown as a numerical signal. Benefiting from these new power units and the wide range of efficiency- enhancing improvements on and around the engines, the new MINI Convertible offers a significantly higher standard of both performance and fuel economy/emission management. On the road, this means a lot more driving pleasure in the MINI Cooper S Convertible and the MINI Cooper Convertible than in their respective predecessors. And to express their benefits in absolute terms, fuel consumption and the CO2 rating of the two models are reduced by 23 per cent on the MINI Cooper S Convertible and 22 per cent on the MINI Cooper Convertible.

Six-speed manual gearbox featured as standard, six-speed automatic as an option.

Both the MINI Cooper S Convertible and the MINI Cooper Convertible come as standard with a six-speed manual gearbox. At the same time both models are available as an option with six-speed automatic transmission.

The use of six gears in both cases naturally enhances the agile and sporting character of the new MINI Convertible, the manual gearbox with its short shift travel and precise gearshift providing ideal conditions for dynamic acceleration and driving pleasure.

The automatic transmission featuring electronic management to shift gears with minimum interruption of power likewise allows sporting and dynamic driving manoeuvres, combining spontaneous and precise reactions in the automatic mode with supreme gearshift comfort.

As an alternative the driver is able to shift gears individually in the manual mode by means of paddles on the steering wheel, as in a Formula 1 racing car. This allows him to keep both hands on the steering wheel at all times, keeping the car under full control regardless of driving conditions.

The new MINI Cabrio offers even more dynamic performance with the help of the optionally available Sports Button. Positioned in front of the gearshift or, respectively, gear selector lever on the centre console, the Sports Button serves to mastermind engine management, the steering and, where appropriate, the automatic transmission. Activating the sports mode at the touch of a button, the driver adjusts the gas pedal control map for a far higher standard of agility and even more direct steering response. And on cars featuring automatic transmission, finally, electronic management again helps to make the gearshift even faster.

Suspension technology on the new MINI Convertible: go-kart feeling of the highest standard.

The unique position of the new MINI Convertible in its segment results to a large extent from the car’s exceptional driving characteristics. The open-air MINI therefore also offers the go-kart feeling so typical of the brand, now raised to an even higher standard of excellence.

The car’s suspension technology converts the superior potential of the new and particularly powerful engines safely and smoothly into enhanced agility, precise handling offering even greater driving pleasure in dynamic bends, on winding country roads, and in city traffic.

On the front axle McPherson spring struts ensure excellent wheel guidance at all times. At the rear the multi-arm axle developed with all the know-how of the BMW Group consistently guarantees optimum road contact through its elaborate kinematics, the use of aluminium longitudinal arms helping to reduce weight to a minimum.

Anti-rollbars likewise reduce body sway to a very low level, again contributing to the agile and safe behaviour of the car.

Compared with the MINI Cooper Convertible, the suspension of the MINI Cooper S Convertible is even more sporting and dynamic. As an option, finally, both models are available with sports suspension for an even higher standard of driving pleasure.

EPS Electrical Power Steering makes a significant contribution to the agility of the MINI Convertible enhanced to an even higher standard. Power Assistance geared to road speed guarantees low steering forces when parking as well as a precise response at high speeds on the Autobahn. At the same time EPS also enhances the efficiency of the car with the electric motor only being activated and consuming energy when power assistance is really required or is desired by the driver.

Exclusive to MINI: DSC and DTC with electronic locking function on the differential in conjunction with front-wheel drive.

Apart from the sports-tuned suspension and powerful brakes, the new MINI Cabrio also comes with the most sophisticated driving stability systems. Technologies featured as standard are ABS anti-lock brakes, EBD Electronic Brake Force Distribution, CBC Cornering Brake Control, as well as DSC Dynamic Stability Control including Hill Start-Off Assistance.

Whenever required, DSC intervenes individually in the car’s brakes and reduces engine output to provide extra stability, thus preventing the car from swerving out of control either at the front or at the rear under particularly dynamic conditions and on slippery surfaces.

The Brake Assistant also included in the DSC package recognises emergency application of the brakes and immediately builds up maximum brake power whenever necessary, keeping the car’s stopping distance as short as possible.

As an optionally available sub-function, DSC offers DTC Dynamic Traction Control able to increase the response thresholds of the car’s driving stability control system and allow carefully controlled slip on the drive wheels. MINI is indeed the only car maker the world over to offer this function on a front-wheel-drive vehicle.

To activate DTC, all the driver has to do is press a button, then setting off in the MINI Convertible with the wheels slightly spinning – for example on a snowbound road or loose sand – or approaching the car’s physical driving limits even more dynamically whenever required. Then, when reaching the limit, DSC will cut in as usual also in the DTC mode.

As an option the driver may completely deactivate DSC whenever desired. Then, in the DSC-Off mode, another function again absolutely unique on front-wheel-drive vehicles ensures optimum drive power and perfect traction in particularly dynamic bends. This is the electronically controlled locking function on the rear axle differential available as part of the DTC function on the new MINI Convertible. Referred to as Electronic Differential Lock Control, this high-tech system serves to apply the brakes appropriately on a drive wheel spinning in a tight bend, thus promoting the car’s drive power and traction without exerting a negative influence on the steering behaviour of the MINI Convertible, which therefore takes bends even more smoothly and faster than before.

The MINI Cooper Convertible comes as standard on 15-inch light-alloy wheels with 175/65 R 15 tyres. The MINI Cooper S Convertible runs on 16-inch light-alloy wheels and 195/55 R 16 runflat tyres enabling the driver to continue even after a complete puncture with full loss of pressure.

As an option both models are available, inter alia, with 17-inch rims in Black Star Bullet Design developed exclusively for the MINI Cabrio .

Optimised occupant safety ensured by the new rollover safety system, four airbags and central safety electronics.

Sophisticated suspension technology and the most advanced driving stability systems in the new MINI Convertible significantly reduce the risk of an accident. Suitable precautions are also taken for situations the driver is not able to influence, an increase in passenger cell stiffness by ten per cent over the former model, high load-resistant carrier structures and precisely defined deformation zones ensuring appropriate diversion and absorption of impact energy in the event of a head-on, side or rear-end collision. To meet the specific needs of an open-air car, the newly constructed floorpan as well as A-pillars and side-sills reinforced to an even higher standard than on the closed MINI provide additional strength and stability.

The new MINI Convertible comes as standard with frontal airbags and side head/thorax airbags integrated in the outer flanks of the front seat backrest and protecting both the head, the upper body and the hips of the occupants from injury in the event of a side-on collision. All four seats feature three-point inertia-reel seat belts with additional belt force limiters and optimised belt tensioners on the front seats. All restraint systems are masterminded by the car’s central safety electronics and are activated as a function of the type and severity of a collision.

The safety system in the MINI Convertible also comprises a rollover sensor activating the newly developed rollbar as well as the belt latch tensioners and the head/thorax airbags in the event of a rollover. Interacting with the windscreen frame appropriately reinforced for the Convertible, the new rollbar moving up electromechanically within 150 milliseconds whenever required acts as part of the passenger cell ensuring maximum occupant safety and protection.

In its all-round safety concept, the new MINI Cabrio is designed to fulfil not only the legal requirements in all international car markets and, but also to achieve outstanding results in all relevant crash tests and consumer safety inspections the world over.

The interior: spacious, variable, sophisticated.

Through its design and construction, the new rollbar enhances not only occupant safety, but also the everyday driving qualities of the new MINI Convertible. Made of one single piece of aluminium, the rollbar extends across the entire width of the interior behind the rear seats. The two ends of the rollbars rest in holders moving up the entire safety unit electromechanically whenever required. In its basic position, on the other hand, the rollbar is no higher than the rear headrests, thus remaining outside of the driver’s area of visibility in looking to the rear.

Designed as a single-piece element, the rollbar furthermore serves to integrate a large through-loading facility between the luggage and the passenger compartment, giving the new MINI Convertible additional variability.

Depending on requirements, the rear-seat backrest split down the middle folds down either in a 50:50 subdivision or completely from right to left. With the roof closed, this increases luggage compartment capacity to 660 litres or 23.10 cubic, feet, exceeding the capacity available in the former model by 55 litres or 1.93 cubic feet. Maximum load, in turn, is up by 30 kg (66 lb) to 430 kg (948 lb).

Like its predecessor, the new MINI Convertible again comes with an Easy-Load system. With the rear lid swivelling down conveniently, the entire lid also serves as a storage tray able to carry a load of up to 80 kg or176 lb.

A further important point is that the rear roof frame swivels up by approximately 35°, creating a generous luggage compartment opening for much easier loading of bulky objects.

With the roof open, in turn, the new MINI Cabrio offers luggage capacity of 125 litres or 4.38 cubic feet, exceeding the capacity provided by the former model by 5 litres. As long as the roof is closed, the parcel shelf resting on two guide rails and holding the roof when open swivels up to the top, increasing luggage capacity to 170 litres or 5.95 cubic feet, again 5 litres more than on the former model.

As an option the MINI Convertible is also available with a new rear rack installation kit, holders in the rear bumper serving to take up a bicycle carrier available as special equipment.

Again, this gives the new MINI Convertible a unique combination of driving pleasure and function. And even the influence of the wind rushing by with the roof open may be adjusted to individual requirements, the optionally available wind deflector serving to significantly reduce air swirl within the interior. Fitted in position behind the front seats, the wind deflector moves up quickly and easily in one simple operation.

Premium quality and diverse style within the interior.

Over and above the thrilling pleasure of driving the new MINI Convertible, quality enhanced to an even higher level than before, controls and instruments in modern design, top-quality materials and attractive colour combinations determine the first impression the new MINI Cabrio will leave on the impressed beholder.

Even in standard trim, the MINI Convertible clearly expresses its exceptional position as the world’s only premium convertible in its segment. The wide range of paintwork and roof colours, interior variants and special equipment simply begs the enthusiast to take a closer look at the car – especially because the new MINI Convertible comes with a complete choice of customisation options so typical of the brand, making each and every car a personally configured one-off showpiece.

The body of the new MINI Convertible is available in no less than 12 paintwork colours, including Horizon Blue and Midnight Black metallic featured for the first time as well as Interchange Yellow exclusive to this stunning car. The soft roof comes as standard either in Black or classic Hot Chocolate Brown. As an option there is also the Denim Blue roof colour characterised by a particularly sporting and robust flair of material, a silver effect generated by gloss threads woven into the roof, and Orange-coloured seams.

In regular trim the interior of the MINI Cooper Convertible comes with seats in Cosmos cloth and Carbon Black upholstery colour. The MINI Cooper S Convertible, in turn, features sports seats in Checkered cloth and Carbon Black colour as standard. Sports seats are also available on both models with cloth/leather upholstery.

Both the MINI Cooper Convertible and the MINI Cooper S Convertible are furthermore available as an option with three versions of leather in Carbon Black, Tuscan Beige and Hot Chocolate

The interior surfaces are also finished with specific features on each model, the MINI Cooper Convertible boasting trim surfaces on the dashboard, elliptic door rings and seven trim rings in Fine White Silver, while the MINI Cooper S Convertible comes with Checkered trim at the same points, with the number of trim rings increased to sixteen.

As an option the interior trim surfaces are also available in Fluid Silver, Piano Black, Brushed Alloy, and English Oak, as well as Interchange Yellow and Horizon Blue exclusive to the MINI Cabrio and corresponding with the body colour.

As yet another styling feature, the optional Colour Line accentuates the lower section of the instrument panel and the armrests on the doors in Dark Grey, Cream White, Rooster Red, Pacific Blue, or Hot Chocolate.

Likewise available as an option within the interior, the Chromeline Package provides a sophisticated glossy finish around the instrument panel and the centre console, chrome elements additionally highlighting the sophisticated character of the rollbar system.

The interior illumination of the MINI Convertible featured as standard provides a harmonious, anti-dazzle light effect and allows the driver to use the controls and instruments safely and without problems also at night. Over and above illumination of the glove box and luggage compartment, reading lights supplementing the interior illumination on the front roof frame also come as standard.

The optional Lights Package includes additional footwell and exit lights as well as discreet light sources around the centre console. Ambient illumination included in the optional Lights Package sets a particular highlight in the interior of the MINI Convertible, serving to provide a discreet “waterfall” light effect from above and indirectly illuminating he centre console, the door pockets and the door handle shells, as well as the side panels at the rear to give the interior a truly unique ambience. At the touch of a button, the driver or passengers are able to vary the emotional mood generated by the ambient lights from warm orange to sporting blue.

Optional automatic air conditioning with a Convertible mode.

As an option the new MINI Convertible comes with either air conditioning or automatic climate control. The automatic unit even comprises a special Convertible mode activated automatically as soon as the roof is opened. In the Convertible mode the temperature set by the driver and passengers is consistently maintained even under the influence of the wind rushing by.

Whenever the a/c compressor is not used it is automatically switched off in the interest of enhanced efficiency. And in low outside temperatures the heating in the footwells is automatically intensified to provide a pleasant climate inside the car as quickly as possible.

Top-end audio and navigation systems, integration of the Apple iPod and Apple iPhone.

Like the MINI Hatch and the MINI Clubman, the new MINI Cabrio may also be upgraded by fitting particularly sophisticated entertainment and navigation systems. The controls for the audio system and the 6.5-inch TFT coloured display for the optional navigation unit are housed in the central circular instrument. The audio system featured as standard comes with a CD player and six loudspeakers. When fitted with a navigation system, the display is positioned beneath the central instrument. To choose the functions presented in the display the driver uses a special joystick on the centre console.

External music players may be integrated without problems in the audio systems of the new MINI Convertible. Using the AUX port featured as standard, the driver or passengers are able, for example, to play music saved on an MP3 player via the audio system.

A special interface for full integration of an Apple iPod is likewise available as an accessory, allowing the user to select music files via the audio controls.

To ensure optimum and safe communication while driving, the MINI Convertible is available as an option with a mobile phone preparation kit and, respectively, an integrated hands-free telephone unit each equipped with a Bluetooth interface and a USB port. This allows simple integration of numerous modern mobile phones as well as the connection of external audio units and USB media. And last but not least, there is also an interface for integrated control of audio and telephone functions specifically for the latest Smartphone models such as the Apple iPhone.

Every minute counts: the Always-Open Timer.

The new MINI Convertible is also available as an option with a very special new feature highlighting the thrill of driving in the open air: Positioned to the left of the rev counter, the Always-Open Timer specifies precisely, down to the last minute, how long the driver and passengers have enjoyed their car with the roof down.

This special instrument is activated once the driver starts the engine of the MINI Cabrio and the soft top is fully open. An analogue indicator moving on a scale from 0 – 60 then counts the time spent driving in the open air in minutes. After one hour of such driving pleasure, the indicator moves back to its starting point and the first LED light on a six-light scale will come on within the circular instrument. In all, therefore, the Always-Open Timer is able to present an overall driving period in the open air of 6 hours and 59 minutes. The period spent driving with the roof open is also determined by the on-board computer, an indicator in the lower section of the rev counter allowing the user to check out both an interim reading and the overall time spent driving in the open air. And like on a trip counter, the driver is able to re-set the interim result whenever he wishes.

The Always-Open Timer is a truly unique instrument clearly expressing the exceptional pleasure of driving the MINI Convertible with the roof down also in straightforward facts and figures. Indeed, it prompts the driver and passengers to enjoy the thrilling features of everyday traffic as often as they can. And at the same time it symbolises the invitation by the MINI Cabrio to enjoy a particularly appealing driving experience.

With all these qualities and features, this innovative instrument raises the style and character of this open four-seater to yet another charming highlight: The MINI Cabrio is the ideal companion for the motorist aware of the thrill of open- air motoring at all times and wishing to enjoy these special moments in particular style.

(Founder / Chief Editor / Journalist) – Arman is the original founder of Motorward.com, which he kept until August 2009. Currently Arman is our chief editor and is held responsible for a large part of the news we publish.