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#18

in 2011 Affordable Small Cars

Avg. Price Paid: $14,789 - $21,702
Original MSRP: $21,100 - $31,300
MPG: 28 City / 35 Hwy
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2011 Mini Cooper Clubman Interior

This interior review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.

In the past, there have been three major complaints about the Mini Cooper Clubman’s interior: confusing interior controls, cramped rear seating and little cargo space. Only one of these – the interior controls – have been updated for 2011. Reviewers say the stereo controls have improved, but are still difficult to master. Rear seating is still cramped and the cargo hold is still small.

Other than improved ergonomics, there’s another significant addition to the Cooper Clubman’s interior: Mini Connected, which is an optional infotainment system. If you hook up your iPhone to this system you can access your email, Twitter account and stream Pandora. 

Overall, you shouldn’t get the Cooper Clubman if you want to transport a lot of stuff and people. The Cooper Clubman is really designed for shoppers who want something a little more functional than the Cooper Hardtop, but value the Cooper’s fun driving dynamics and quirky exterior.

  • "The Mini Clubman's biggest advantage over the standard Cooper is in rear-seat legroom -- as in, it actually has some." -- Edmunds
  • "At long last some serious attention has been paid to cleaning up the Mini's haphazardly arrayed instrument panel. Without fiddling with the cheeky tach and pie plate speedometer arrays, surface finishes, secondary control arrangements, and the general layout are all improved. Radio knobs now live at a single elevation. The silly heater thumbwheels have been replaced by rocker switches." -- Automobile Magazine

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Seating

The 2011 Cooper Clubman has more interior space than the Mini Cooper, but not much. Adults will still feel cramped in the rear row, so it’s a good idea not to stick them back there during longer trips. Reviewers haven’t said much about front seat comfort, but report that there’s plenty of headroom.

  • "It's worth noting that the Clubman also inherits some of the standard Mini's less desirable traits. Even with the increase in rear legroom, adults will still feel cramped." -- Edmunds
  • "One of the primary reasons to choose the MINI Cooper Clubman over the MINI Cooper is the additional legroom in the back seat. There is plenty of headroom in both the front and rear." -- Automobile.com
  • "The extra three inches of wheelbase in the Clubman translate into three extra inches of rear leg room, which make the rear seats very practical for children and acceptable for two adults for short trips." -- Left Lane News
  • "Front seat comfort is just OK. Seat adjustments were awkwardly placed and hard to use." -- USA Today

Interior Features

In the past, reviewers have had one major gripe with the Mini Cooper Clubman’s interior: confusing stereo knobs. This year, Mini tried to fix this problem, and for the most part, reviewers say the interior controls are a little easier to use. However, they aren’t completely satisfied, commenting that there’s still room for improvement.

In addition to an updated dash, the Cooper Clubman gets a few more standard and optional features. All Cooper Clubmans come with a new version of Boost CD audio system, which includes HD radio and satellite radio. Other standard features include: a leather-wrapped steering wheel with cruise control and audio controls that tilts and telescopes, push-button start and an auxiliary input jack. 

Aside from the standard Boost CD audio system, there are two other stereo options: Mini Connected and Mini Connected with Navigation. Mini Connected includes Bluetooth and a USB port, and allows you to access your e-mail and Twitter account. The system is designed to function with the Apple iPhone. The data service links to the Internet and allows you to access your e-mail, Twitter account or stream Pandora from the cockpit. To access Pandora, all you have to do is download the free Pandora iPhone app.

  • "Just like the regular Cooper, the Clubman features a snazzy, retro-inspired control setup. One of our main gripes about previous Minis was the oddly placed stereo control knobs. Fortunately, that has been rectified for 2011 with a slightly more conventional layout." -- Edmunds
  • "A new infotainment upgrade called Mini Connected helps make up for the sacrifices in driving fun. Working with Microsoft, Mini engineers developed a hook-up between an iPhone and the Mini's soul that handles a broad range of entertainment and communications functions as you go." -- Automobile Magazine

Cargo

While the Mini Cooper Clubman’s trunk is larger than the Mini Cooper Hardtop’s, it's still very small. You only get 9.2 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 32.8 with them folded. 

Reviewers also complain about the Mini Cooper Clubman’s rear barn doors that swing out, rather than up, to access the cargo area. Reviewers dislike these doors because they’re not practical.

  • "Swing open the twin rear doors and you'll find a cargo area more than 50 percent larger than the regular Cooper's, although with only 9.2 cubic feet of capacity behind the rear seatback, it's not exactly cavernous. Flip the rear seats down, however, and the cargo bay expands to a useful 32.8 cubes." -- Edmunds

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