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Revised styling, greater efficiency and subtle engineering changes mark out the mid-life refresh for the Countryman crossover, the biggest car in Mini's range.
The company's designers have created a distinction between the Cooper S and lower trim levels, with a hexagonal grille finished in chrome for the higher trim, and a split high-gloss black version on the One and matt silver on the Cooper. LED daytime running lights and fog lights are a new feature on the Cooper trim level and above. The All4 all-wheel drive models, are also now more distinguishable, with bodyguard cladding designed to make the point that the car has off-road ability.
Inside, Mini claims that acoustic refinement has been enhanced, although refinement is probably best described as average for the class, while the cabin has also been tweaked with subtle touches including anthracite-coloured dials.
The slight efficiency improvements - brought about by optimising air ducting, lower-friction wheel bearings and lower rolling-resistance tyres - mean every model drops one benefit-in-kind band as a result.
The 112hp All4 Cooper D driven here emits 128g/km, just 1g/km less than the four-wheel drive 130hp Nissan Qashqai that can be considered the biggest rival. Skoda's all-wheel drive Yeti offers 140hp, but is badly off the pace for emissions, with its 152g/km being 24g/km and five BIK bands higher than the Countryman.
The Mini can't get very close to the Qashqai's 37.2% residual value, and its 35% figure is both disappointing for a brand renowned for bullet-proof RVs, and also behind the Yeti's 35.4%. Boot space is also more compromised in the Mini, which is 80 litres shy of the Nissan, and the interior, while more characterful and individual than any rival, doesn't quite feel as classy as other vehicles in the segment.
Mini Countryman Cooper D All4
Model price range
Service, maintenance and repair £1887
Vehicle Excise Duty
Cost per mile
BIK 20/40% per month
Boot space (min/max)
Subtle improvements inside and out for a costs winner