Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 46 total)
  • Ugghhh – Mini Convertibles……
  • winston
    Free Member

    You think you know your wife and that she’s on the same page as you and then this!

    So she is obviously having a mid life crisis and has set her heart on a Mini convertible. Being a sane male individual who has spent a lifetime hauling bikes, windsurfers, surfboards and ladders around I’ve obviously never given any car which can’t take a roofrack a second glance so know nothing about them.

    She won’t be dissuaded by logic and so I need to know a couple of things. I’ve found out that even more usefully than not having a roof, the latest model can’t even take a towbar……FFS!! how crap is this car?   But I have seen a propitiatory bike rack that appears to screw in to the back somehow. Does anyone have experience of this?  There seems to be very little info out there on how it works and which models it fits. Though this will be her car (like I’m ever going to drive it) there will be times when it would be useful to hang my bike off the back and I can’t see any other way of doing it.

    Secondly, if anyone is unfortunate enough to have one of these abominations, has it been reliable and does anyone have naything useful to say about which engines or specs are best – she is more interested in luxury (leather heated seats etc) than performance and deffo not racing stripes and turbo nonsense….

    Help me!

    EDIT: Forgot to say it will be a secondhand purchase

    snotrag
    Full Member

    Help me!

    Driving small fun cars with the roof down is much like MTB in some ways. Open your mind, you might enjoy it.

    verses
    Full Member

    Love my base model 1st gen, it’s great fun.  But… It’s def a 2nd car, I’ve never bothered trying to take a bike anywhere in/on it.

    It’s 18 years old and has 100k on the clock but seems to be going strong (clutch might be due in the not too distant future).

    the-muffin-man
    Full Member

    I’m guessing you already have another car for load/bike/vanity sport transport?

    Convertibles are ace – but make sure the roof works. I can’t recall the last time I actually saw a Mini convertible with the hood down. 🙂

    verses
    Full Member

    It’s def a 2nd car, I’ve never bothered trying to take a bike anywhere in/on it.

    Having said that, it manages the occasional tip run 🙂

    20220616_124004

    johnx2
    Free Member

    One way trip?

    thisisnotaspoon
    Free Member

    Anything can carry bikes if you try hard enough.

    I used to take my MTB all over the place in an MG Midget!  Wheels went behind the seats and the frame over the passenger seats with the bars spun 180.  Could even get the roof up with the XC bike (otherwise the forks made it too tall).  The Mini has token back seats so there’s no excuse (although IIRC there’s zero legroom so you may as well just remove them to make some actual luggage space back there.

    2 out of the three cars I’ve owned have had no-roof of some description, And one of those was a Berlingo!

    kormoran
    Free Member

    One way trip?

    Excellent. Bravo sir, bravo!

    alpin
    Free Member

    Get an MX5…. At least then you can enjoy driving it, too.

    winston
    Free Member

    Whats a vanity sport? But anyway yes, I have a 10 year old toyota estate car  – can you tell I’m not a car person?

    Anyway 18 years old and 100k appeals mainly on price but I’m afraid she will want something a bit newer. Nice colour though.

    As for ‘opening my mind’ – I used to have a Triumph Vitesse when I was 18 and chasing girls. It never worked (the car or chasing girls in the car) and even when it did the top down open road dream usually morphed into sitting behind a lorry in the rain and that was 35 years ago when there was less traffic and less potholes!


    @alpin
    – needs 4 seats or yes the MX5 would have been my choice too

    johndoh
    Free Member

    I don’t mind Mini convertibles – in some ways they are quite equal to the MX5 as far as looks go and the overall design of the car has stood the test of time.

    Range Rover Evoque convertibles on the other hand…

    alpin
    Free Member

    needs 4 seats or yes the MX5 would have been my choice too

    Not sure how practical the rear seats are in a Mini…!

    verses
    Full Member

    One way trip?

    Ooof, harsh!  😀

    Not sure how practical the rear seats are in a Mini…!

    Ours mostly has the dog on the back seat, but occasionally ferries teenagers to college/friends etc. They’re fine for short journeys but you wouldn’t want to be back there for proper road trips.

    StuF
    Full Member

    We got a mini clubman (at least is has a roof) and I was prepared to hate it (all mini, brand/style over functionality etc etc) but I’ve grown to actually quite like it. It drives well, even with the base 1.5, it’s well put together – just don’t go to bmw for servicing unless you like throwing money away.

    db
    Full Member

    We have had 2… Both Cooper S models the second being JCW.

    I love – speeeeed, sound, wind in my hair. I hate suspension – not helped by rubber band tyres on huge rims.

    Replaced now by Electric Mini (non convertible as they were silly money). Loving the electric mini, range is rubbish but as a town car and sub 100mile trips car it is fab.

    slowol
    Full Member

    The reason cars have a roof is that they add considerable safety features. Ask her if she’s also going to cut out the seatbelts.

    A guy in my year at sixth form rolled a convertible and got scalped (skin grafts from his thigh) and a mate of my dad’s is now disabled due to head injuries from a crash in one on the M4. That was a fancy Mercedes with a pop up roll bar.

    Both would likely have been merely badly rattled in a car with a roof.

    As for fitting ladders in, roof down, one end in the passenger footwell and tie a rope round something. Carried a 10 foot Christmas tree like that in my sister’s 2CV when we were students. Surely a bike similarly just gets shoved behind the front seats. It’s a sort of sub standard pickup without driver comforts.

    the-muffin-man
    Full Member

    People also trip down stairs.

    binners
    Full Member

    Just keep rehearsing the line “are you going anywhere nice on your holidays?”

    maccruiskeen
    Full Member

    Driving small fun cars with the roof down is much like MTB in some ways.

    the wind in your hair, the sun in your eyes, the flies in your teeth

    Open your mind,

    but try to keep your mouth shut.

    a friend of mine quickly fell out of love with open top motoring as the novelty of arriving anywhere looking like she’d been dragged through a hedge wore pretty thin pretty quickly.. she’d set off on a journey looking Audrey Hepburn and arrive looking like Robert Smith. They’re more practical for bald old men than pretty young ladies.

    thisisnotaspoon
    Free Member

    The reason cars have a roof is that they add considerable safety features. Ask her if she’s also going to cut out the seatbelts.

    You’re going to shit a brick when you realize this a a cycling forum and bikes have none of that.

    midlifecrashes
    Full Member

    As an MX5 Mk3 owner, something for the weekend, sir?

    Enjoy it, it’ll be fun. I test drove a few before opting for the Mazda, if she/you aren’t set on mad go-kart speed of the Cooper S and JCW, go for a One or a special edition based on it with the smallest wheels on the tallest tyres you can find. Comfort is night and day compared to the low profiles

    johndoh
    Free Member

    ***she’d set off on a journey looking Audrey Hepburn and arrive looking like Robert Smith.***

    I giggled.

    5lab
    Full Member

    I’d check the size of the rear seats first, they’re really tight in a open mini.

    For carrying a bike, I’d suggest wheels off in wheel bags and frame in a frame bag on the back seat. Bit of a faff but if it’s only very rarely it doesn’t really matter. Saris bones can go on a lot of cars too

    finishthat
    Free Member

    Maybe look at a Beetle convertible  look much better more space and I suspect more reliable we have a previous gen new Beetle convertible with  the 1.8T  engine it’s a great jalopy 20 years old now even the aircon works! (Needed for winter condensation)

    verses
    Full Member

    Though this will be her car (like I’m ever going to drive it) there will be times when it would be useful to hang my bike off the back and I can’t see any other way of doing it.

    The “R52 Owners Club” on Facebook shows plenty of people using bike racks – seems a few specific models that don’t rest on the screen/hood are best.

    DickBarton
    Full Member

    Had one, apart from the rear view mirror wobbling all over the place, was a nice car to drive. Wouldn’t own one myself, but it did the job without any complaints.

    dartdude
    Free Member

    Fiat 500 ?

    Oh if your Mrs isn’t used to a stiff ride cough drive …

    Have errrrr test drive one to gauge. 😉

    avdave2
    Full Member

    Not sure how practical the rear seats are in a Mini…!

    But you can get 4 elephants in one so it’ll be fine

    convert
    Full Member

    Hired a mini cooper convertible in Tenerife. Was fun for a week. Super impractical though – finding space for the 2 modest bags was a challenge. You’d need to be small or very flexible to spend more than a round the block trip in the back.

    My dad had a VW Eos. Called it his cancer car – a last hoorah for a last few months. Was no looker but 4 proper seats and clever hard top. Drove well with the bigger engine. Maybe too much of an oldies car – had whiff of Honda Jazz about it.

    sharkbait
    Free Member

    a friend of mine quickly fell out of love with open top motoring as the novelty of arriving anywhere looking like she’d been dragged through a hedge wore pretty thin pretty quickly

    Not all convertibles are the same.

    chrismac
    Full Member

    I always find the new minis an oxymoron. They are huge, built on a 1 series platform I believe. Definitely style over substance. I had one as a hire car and it was great along as you didn’t want to fit anything in it, want performance, or have to look at the interior

    TiRed
    Full Member

    My dad had a VW Eos. Called it his cancer car – a last hoorah for a last few months. Was no looker but 4 proper seats and clever hard top. Drove well with the bigger engine. Maybe too much of an oldies car

    I had one for two kids and a dog in the boot. Best thing about it was the large glass roof. Four seat convertibles are very windy in the front seats and really rather miserable in the back two. Kids didn’t complain though.The folding roof would stop traffic, everyone loved the transformer look.

    My next sports car will be two seats and a glass roof rather than a convertible. If you only need two seats, an MX5 is the default convertible. Had a 54 Cooper S, was fast in a line, but fragile. I’d not own another mini.

    cynic-al
    Free Member

    I enjoyed my R52 Cooper, managed to get adults or a bike in the back, not a great drivers car tho. Roof worked great.

    MoreCashThanDash
    Full Member

    Maybe she wants you to be the Ken to her Barbie….

    sharkbait
    Free Member

    a mate of my dad’s is now disabled due to head injuries from a crash in one on the M4. That was a fancy Mercedes with a pop up roll bar

    People in cars with metal roofs also get head injuries, soooo….

    jimdubleyou
    Full Member

    Spend 5k on a pristine mk1 Audi TT, you can even get a bolt on luggage rack.

    Your wife’s hair will arrive only slightly tousled.

    windyg
    Free Member

    Got my road bike in the back of the wife’s Gen 1 Mini Convertible, it was easier than my Cooper S

    Overall they are a bit of a toy car, lots of rattles, roof often leaked around the doors, harsh ride, convertibles have a smaller boot than other models.

    matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    If that is what she wants, best just find a nice one and embrace it.

    (As long as you’re not the mini convertible owner who refused to reverse yesterday in Argyll when we could see the passing place about three car lengths behind. After much rude gesticulating from him I reversed the camper about 500m to our last passing place. He was so embarrassed he didn’t even thank us…*rs*h*l*)

    jkomo
    Full Member

    I recon the non turbo might be a bit slow- test drive them both. The rear seats are fine unless your children are out of nappies. I had a cooper s and jcw with roofs.
    Fab to drive, terrible ride, terrible seats.

    winston
    Free Member

    None of you are selling them to me quite frankly. I think I’ll persuade her she wants a campervan.

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