Loads of Character in the 2019 Mini Cooper SE Countryman

I had the privilege of test driving a 2019 Mini Cooper SE Countryman for the week, this is the first plug-in hybrid for the Mini brand. This five-seater with four doors is quite large and spacious and oh so full of character!

The 2019 Mini Cooper SE Countryman offers consumers an updated trim design and optional equipment availability. The exterior design is what sets it apart; it is sharp, spunky and charming. It’s also a lot of fun to drive.

The Countryman trims available are: Classic, Signature and Iconic.

The Classic is pretty basic and comes in basic colors. Any eye-catching color will cost you $500. With a slim list of options, the Classic trim is not aimed at the average Mini buyer. The Classic trim begins at $27,750.

The Signature trim begins at $31,750 and paint color is not additional. More available options on this trim as well. Instead of the standard 6.5-inch touchscreen, an 8.8-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay is included. This is a well-rounded package for more quality accessories, including leather upholstery, more charging ports, a spare tire (yes, spare tires require spare change these days from Mini Cooper).

The Iconic trim adds navigation, 19-inch alloy wheels and LED headlight and taillights.

Getting behind the wheel, the Mini Cooper gives you a high seating position which is great for visibility sake. It is all-wheel drive with a 221-hp turbocharged 1.5-liter three cylinder engine. It’s electric motor is paired with a standard six-speed automatic transmission.

The Mini Cooper has three modes:  Sport, Green or Mid, just like its gas-powered counterpart. The EPA listed driving range is 270 total driving miles or a range of 12 miles on its ability to run pure electric. One downside if you are fueling up, the Mini Cooper likes premium fuel only.

The Mini Cooper can definitely scoot around town and fit in places that bigger cars cannot. And speaking of space, the Countryman offers 17.6 cubic feet of cargo space, fold the seats down and that increases to 47.6 cubic feet. Loading bulky, heavy cargo proved to be of ease as the floor was fairly low for the roomy crossover. 

The interior seats five and is an adult-friendly crossover with comfortable seating, even for taller peeps. In fact, the back seats recline for ample head and legroom. Leather is standard on the Countryman with soft touch surfaces. Bolsters are standard in the front seats and while narrow, they provide support in more aggressive driving. Storage compartments are easy to find in the Countryman with the usual large glovebox, oversized door pouches as well as pouches on the back of the front seats. Opening the armrest lends access to a smaller space and a USB port. All in all the interior of the Countryman is top-notch. Fun once again comes into play with some of the oversized display switches and the somewhat quirky display.

Standard features include a panoramic sunroof, rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, Bluetooth, and a 6.5-inch infotainment display.

The Countryman is different than Cooper in body style. The Countryman is beefier, it has a different grille and distinctive front and rear bumpers. Being more pronounced, the Countryman has a more rugged vibe for sure.

Crash test results earned top scores from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Standard safety features include the aforementioned rearview camera and rear parking sensors. Optional advanced safety includes front parking sensors, parallel park assist, heads-up display, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control.

With many variations on configurations, the Mini Cooper options are as varied as their owners. The Countryman is an outstanding choice and has a middle of the road price point. The decked out 2019 Mini Cooper SE Countryman that I test drove this week comes in at $45,750.

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