Need to get in touch? Give us a call.
Our helpful customer advisors are available to answer questions and give you the advice and information you need.
For all other enquiries please contact us from the contact Listers section.
By Jonathan Crouch
Added 16th October, 2015
Not every commercial vehicle must justify itself in terms of pounds, shillings and pence. Here's one you might buy for other reasons. Because you like what it'll say about your business. Because you like what it'll say about you. Many will see in this MINI Clubvan just the right blend of fun and practicality. Yes, of course there are more sensible choices you could make in buying a used vehicle in the small van segment, but none of them will get your brand noticed in quite the same way. And how do you put a value on that?
Which means that if your need for a van really is merely limited to light urban duties, then this one might be just about perfect. Imagine a chic florist or an artisan baker who needs a stylish way of delivering lightweight goods while advertising their business in a way sure to appeal to those with a bit of disposable income and a sense of style. Exactly. Yes it's a pity about the restricted side door access. Otherwise though, provided your assessment of this model is based on what it actually sets out to offer, there's not a lot to gripe about. You don't need to be a vanatic to drive one.
So it is that this Clubvan neatly sidesteps so many of the demanding measures most place upon used commercial vehicles. All it needs to be is cool, fun to drive and reliable, with a modicum of carrying capacity - a MINI for the working week. Self employed with a small business? Your adventure awaits.
We can all argue about whether this generation F56/F55-series Cooper S Hatch is as pretty a car as its predecessor, but there can be no doubt that it was a better all-rounder. It's more spacious, better built, features some fascinating technical features and seems to have been engineered to offer more driving fun on one hand and lower bills on the other.
Just make sure you get a car whose original owner specced it right, with extras like the Driving Modes system and the Variable damping. You might want to avoid examples fitted with larger wheels that bring a crashy ride and automatic gearboxes that detract from the connected feel.
Yes, you could pay the same kind of money and buy a more conventional supermini-based hot hatch. Perhaps the purer, more focused Fiesta ST. Or the more comfortable and relaxing Peugeot 208 GTI. This Cooper S though, arguably delivers an appealing compromise between the two - and feels much more special while it's doing it. It's a MINI to the max. And that's always a tempting thing.
Here is a MINI - but not as you might know it. But then, if it was conventionally sized, this Countryman wouldn't be able to keep existing MINI people loyal when they out-grew their city runabouts and shopping rockets. Nor would it tempt in buyers new to the brand. Customers liking the vibrant SUV-inspired Crossover concept, but wanting it with a little more tarmac sparkle.
This Countryman has done both these things, though at the cost of British style and build. It's as suited to the urban jungle as a Land Rover is to the Amazon. It's a car created for the times we live in. And a Country you could be proud of.
Back in the late Fifties, the story goes that the engineers behind the original British Mini proposed to Austin company Chairman Leonard Lord that a faster version should be introduced with a 950cc engine and a top speed of 90mph. He declared it excessive, limiting production versions to a far more sensible 75mph. What on earth then, might he have made of this Countryman JCW model?
More importantly, what are buyers on the used market to make of it? It's not really a hot hatch or a small sporting SUV, though you could think of it as either. Better perhaps just to think of it as a bit of fun you could sensibly justify, a practical yet compact sporting family five-door backed by BMW standards of engineering
True, the John Cooper Works Countryman is never going to be the obvious answer to any 'which car?' question. It's just too niche a thing for that. Even so, we have a sneaking suspicion that this MINI might suit quite a significant number of used market people very well, assuming that they could be persuaded to consider it in the first place. It's very fast, brilliant fun, is nicely built, looks good, feels unique, swallows a small family and won't cost a fortune to run. If those don't sound like the ingredients for a very promising car, then we're not sure what does.
Third time round, BMW's modern era MINI turned out to be a much more sophisticated thing. This three-door Hatch version is slightly more practical than its R56-series predecessor and feels considerably better built. It's far more efficient too, with the bulk of the range using a punchier range of eager three cylinder engines. And its more sophisticated underpinnings are better suited to longer journeys. In short, this car came of age in third generation form. But does it make sense as a used buy?
It's pretty hard to take exception to MINI's MK3 model Convertible. It delivers surprising space for passengers and luggage, a stylish roadway demeanour and a customisable fabric roof. This revised version has been usefully updated with fresh technology, smarter connectivity and an advanced dual-clutch automatic gearbox. As before, buyers can pick petrol, diesel and performance versions.
The styling of this revised MK3 model doesn't look all that different, but close inspection will reveal the addition of standard-fit LED front and rear lights, plus there's now extra scope for all-important personalisation. When the folded fabric roof is down, it forms a wrap-around collar around the back seats, rather than disappearing completely. It encroaches slightly into the boot area but despite this, the luggage capacity is these days a reasonably acceptable 215-litres with the roof closed and 160-litres with it folded down. The roof is customisable and retracts in 18 seconds.
Simply click the range you’re interested in to see what reviews are available:
If you would like more information, please get in touch with your local MINI centre, who will be happy to help you:
Listers Boston (MINI) is open today until 6:30pm. It is next open tomorrow from 8:30am to 6:30pm.
Please note that we only display reviews for cars we currently have for sale on these pages.