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  Article Image gallery (12) Specifications  
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Country of origin:Great Britain
Introduced in:2011
Source:Company press release
Last updated:October 31, 2011
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Click here to download printer friendly versionThe MINI Roadster is the only open-top two-seater in the brand's history. The principles of the MINI design language are faithfully reflected in the body design of the new concept. For example, the athletically taut surfaces, harmonious curves and parallel lines typical of MINI cars are complemented by a sloping windscreen frame raked by an extra 13 degrees over the MINI Convertible, a short passenger compartment distilled around two seats, and a flat boot lid. A waistline rising up slightly along the length of the body to the clearly stepped boot and the deliberately low-slung silhouette - even with the roof closed - give the MINI Roadster an elegantly stretched appearance. At the same time, the new model wears its brand identity on its sleeve thanks to unmistakable design features like the hexagonal contours of its radiator grille, the black border around the lower part of the body, chrome trim strips and surrounds, large circular headlights, vertically stacked rear lights positioned on the outer extremes of the rear end, and the eye-catching surrounds of the side indicators on the front side panels.

With an exterior length of 146.8 inches (MINI Cooper S Roadster: 147 inches, MINI John Cooper Works Roadster: 148 inches), wheelbase of 97.1 inches and width of 66.3 inches, the dimensions of the MINI Roadster largely mirror those of the MINI Convertible. Standing just 54.5 inches (MINI Cooper S Coupe: 54.7 inches, MINI John Cooper Works Coupe: 54.8 inches), i.e. more than 3/4 of an inch lower than its four-seater soft-top stablemate, the new two-seater cuts a distinctive, low-slung and elegantly stretched figure from the side. A windscreen frame that is more heavily raked and tapers upwards more sharply than that of the MINI Convertible also gives it a clearly distinguishable appearance when viewed head-on.

Another example of the faithful transposition of MINI design into the compact roadster template comes in the form of the robust, all-season durability of the soft-top roof. When closed, the roof - which shares the simple style of classic British roadsters - "cascades" downwards, broadening as it heads towards the body and underlining to the typically MINI, powerful over-the-wheel stance. When opened, the roof folds down flat behind the seats, keeping the car's elegantly sweeping lines intact. And since the outer skin of the roof faces upwards, there is no need for any additional cover.

The manual opening and closing mechanism of the soft-top roof allows the driver to usher in his next dose of open-top driving pleasure without a second thought. And the roof can be closed again quickly to protect the driver and passenger from less welcome weather.

The roof is opened by turning the release lever on the windscreen frame though 130 degrees and swiveling the soft-top back in a single movement behind the seats, where it locks into place. The process for closing the roof again is triggered by pressing a button positioned between the roll-over bars, which allows the roof to extend back out of its anchorage points assisted by gas-pressure springs. It can then be pulled forward with the help of the release lever and fixed in place again against the windscreen frame.

A range of two non-metallic and six metallic paint shades are available for the exterior of the MINI Roadster. In keeping with British roadster tradition, the roof remains in black. Sport Stripes, available in three colors for the bonnet, boot lid and rear apron, allow owners to add an extra personal touch.

The light-alloy wheels fitted as standard on the MINI Roadster come in 16 or 17-inch formats, depending on the model variant. A selection of other light-alloy wheels are available as an option in the same sizes.

The customary MINI variety of seat and upholstery variants includes ultra-exclusive piped sports seats in the color shade Toffy. Added to which, black sports seats are also available in Punch Leather with beige-colored perforations. Trim strips can be ordered in any of six variants, while an extra Chili Red option is also offered only for the MINI John Cooper Works Roadster.

A choice of five Color Lines is also available, and customers may likewise choose to explore the additional, extremely exclusive interior design options offered by the MINI Yours range.

The absence of a rear seat bench allows the MINI Roadster to offer 8.5 ft3 of luggage space. Plus, the high-opening tailgate and low boot sill make it that much easier to load items of luggage, while a 14" x 8" (approx.) through-loading door can also be opened from the driver's or passenger's seat, providing added versatility. The MINI Roadster also comes with larger door bins, three cupholders, and a cross-rack behind the seats.

Another stand-out feature of the MINI Roadster is the stainless steel rollover bars, the front of which are padded. Together with the reinforced windscreen frame, they provide optimized occupant protection in the event of the car rolling over. Dynamically formed contours ensure that the roll-over bars and windscreen frame combine to impressive effect in terms of design, too.

The safety equipment on board the new MINI Roadster also includes front airbags and head-thorax airbags integrated into the outer sides of the seat backrests, three-point inertia-reel seat belts including belt force limiters and belt tensioners, and a Tire Pressure Monitor System.

Bodyshell stiffening at the rear increases the torsional rigidity of the body and combines with extra-sturdy side sills to enhance the strength of the passenger cell. In addition, the MINI Roadster also features built-in innovative pedestrian protection measures and special stiffening elements in the front section. These result in a slightly higher front axle load rating compared with the MINI Hardtop, which gives the front wheels extra traction. In addition, the use of a comparatively lightweight, manually operated soft-top roof lowers the car's center of gravity. The impressive body rigidity of the MINI Roadster and its dynamically favorable weight distribution provide the ideal platform for agile and precise handling.

Optimized aerodynamic properties also play their role in a vehicle concept geared to enjoying driving fun to the fullest extent. The heavily raked A-pillars and windscreen reduce the frontal area of the body, and therefore reduce levels of drag. Added to which, the MINI Roadster is fitted with an active rear spoiler. Integrated into the tailgate, the spoiler extends automatically as soon as the MINI Roadster reaches 50 mph. When the car's speed drops back below 37 mph, a four-part control mechanism returns the spoiler to its rest position. The active rear spoiler, which can also be operated manually using a button in the control panel on the windscreen frame, provides 88 lb of extra downforce when travelling at maximum speed.

Airflow has been optimized to an even greater degree on the MINI John Cooper Works Roadster. The most powerful member of the Roadster line-up is fitted with a John Cooper Works aerodynamic kit as standard in a nod to its exceptionally dynamic performance capability.

The MINI Roadster is available with the three engines in the US. The state-of-the-art engines all boast sporty power delivery combined with exemplary efficiency, and all variants of the MINI Roadster carry the Cooper name in their model titles. This reference to legendary ex-Formula One racing car designer John Cooper, who used to race the classic Mini, marks out a car with particular sporting capability.

The MINI Cooper Roadster represents an extremely lively entry point into the Roadster line-up. Its 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine boasts a fully variable valve control system - based on the VALVETRONIC technology used in BMW engines - which sharpens the engine's responses yet also lowers fuel consumption and emissions. With output rising to 121 and maximum torque of 114 lb-ft at 4,250 rpm, the powerplant accelerates the MINI Cooper Roadster from 0 to 60 mph in 8.7 seconds and on to a top speed of 124 mph. Its average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle stands at 5.7 liters per 100 kilometers (49.6 mpg imp), while CO2 emissions come in at 133 grams per kilometer.

In addition to fully variable valve control, MINI TwinPower Turbo technology also features a twin-scroll turbocharger and direct injection - a technology package that makes the 1.6-litre engine in the MINI Cooper S Roadster the world's most efficient in its displacement class.

The powerplant develops its maximum output of 135 kW/184 hp at 5,500 rpm. Peak torque is 177 lb-ft at 1,600 - 5,000 rpm and 192 lb-ft in a short burst courtesy of the Overboost function. All of which means the MINI Cooper S Roadster powers from 0 to 60 mph in 6.7 seconds on the way to a top speed of 141 mph. These performance figures contrast with average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle of 6.0 liters per 100 kilometers (47.1 mpg imp) and CO2 emissions of 139 grams per kilometer.

The latest model variant from MINI's John Cooper Works sub-brand showcases its sporting potential with even greater intent. The MINI John Cooper Works Roadster is powered by a 181 hp four-cylinder engine with MINI TwinPower Turbo technology. The 1.6-liter unit generates its maximum output at 6,000 rpm, with peak torque of 260 Newton metres (192 lb-ft) on stream at 1,850 rpm. The Overboost function briefly pushes this figure up to 280 Newton metres (207 lb-ft).

6.3 seconds is all it takes the MINI John Cooper Works Roadster to blast from 0 to 60 mph. Top speed is 147 mph. Added to which, with average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle of 7.3 liters per 100 kilometers (38.7 mpg imp) and CO2 emissions of 169 grams per kilometer, the MINI John Cooper Works Roadster boasts extraordinary efficiency for an open-top car in this output class.

MINI Cooper Roadster and MINI Cooper S Roadster can also be specified with an optional six-speed automatic gearbox with Steptronic function as an alternative to the six-speed manual item fitted as standard across the MINI Roadster range.

Teaming up with the powerful engines and customary MINI front-wheel drive, chassis technology of a quality unparalleled in the small car segment imbues the MINI Roadster with the brand's hallmark driving fun. MacPherson struts at the front axle, a multi-link rear axle, Electric Power Steering with speedsensitive assistance, powerful brakes offering excellent feel, and bespoke tuning for all chassis components come together to produce a new interpretation of the time-honored MINI go-kart feeling. Sports suspension, which brings stiffer damper characteristics, sturdier anti-roll bars and upgraded springs, is available as an option.

A Sport Button on the center console, standard on all US spec MINI John Cooper Works Roadster variants, allows the driver to adjust the car's steering characteristics and accelerator responses. If the optional six-speed automatic gearbox is specified, pressing this button also shortens shift times. The standard DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) system selectively brakes individual wheels and reduces engine power to prevent a front or rear-end slide. The system includes ABS anti-lock braking, EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution), CBC (Cornering Brake Control), Brake Assist and Hill Start Assistant. DSC also adds DTC (Dynamic Traction Control) with EDLC (Electronic Differential Lock Control) for the driven axle as standard on the MINI John Cooper Works Roadster and as an option on all other model variants.

The interior of the MINI Roadster features - in typical brand style - a large Center Speedo and a rev counter positioned directly behind the steering wheel. The sports seats fitted as standard in the MINI Cooper S Roadster and MINI John Cooper Works Roadster offer outstanding lateral support through quickly-taken corners. Standard specification also includes air conditioning, height-adjustable seats, an on-board computer, the Openometer, the storage package and electrically adjustable exterior mirrors.

The comfort and individuality of the MINI Roadster can be further enhanced with items from the range of high-quality options, some unique in the small car segment. For example, Adaptive Headlights and black headlight housings are available in conjunction with the optional Xenon headlights. Among the other options customers can choose from are Park Distance Control with rear sensors, Comfort Access, a multifunction steering wheel, automatic climate control, heated seats, automatically dimming rear-view mirror and exterior mirrors, an armrest. Also available as an option are Recaro sports seats in a leather/Dinamica combination with optimized lateral support, extended thigh support, integrated head restraints and an embossed John Cooper Works by Recaro logo. Customers can also dip into the selection of exclusive options available from the MINI Yours range and ultra-sporty John Cooper Works options and accessories.

The MINI Roadster comes as standard with the Radio MINI CD audio system with HD technology, while an extra dose of entertainment pleasure can be specified in the form of the Harman Kardon hi-fi loudspeaker system and USB audio interface. The radio MINI Visual Boost and MINI navigation system link up with a 6.5-inch, highresolution color display in the Center Speedo. If these options are specified, MINI Connected allows Apple iPhone owners access to internet-based services inside the car. The MINI Connected App opens the door to a web radio function, use of Google services, Facebook and Twitter, reception of Rss news feeds, full integration of Pandora Radio, the MINIMALISM Analyzer, Mission Control and Dynamic Music functions, as well as the latest Driving Excitement functions, such as Condition Check, Force Meter and digital sports instruments.

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  Article Image gallery (12) Specifications