2012 Mini Cooper Clubman Review

The 2012 Mini Clubman offers more cargo and passenger space than the regular Mini Cooper and reviewers said it is fun to drive, but other small cars offer greater day-to-day practicality and functionality.

Pros & Cons

  • Athletic handling
  • Peppy engine options
  • Less spacious than many rivals




Critics' Rating: 8.6
Performance: 8.2
Interior: 6.8
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.3
This rating isn’t available yet for the current model year. In the meantime, last year’s rating of 8.6 for safety is being used to calculate this vehicle’s overall score.
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Mini Cooper Clubman Overview

Reviewers said that the 2012 Mini Cooper Clubman is more fun to drive than your typical hatchback. They wrote that while the Clubman is slightly bigger than the standard Mini Cooper, it maintains the sporty handling that Minis are known for. Three engines are offered: a naturally-aspirated four-cylinder engine on the base model, and turbocharged four-cylinder engines with more power for Cooper S and John Cooper Works (JCW) models. Reviewers said the base model has adequate power, but preferred the peppier acceleration of the other models better. A six-speed manual transmission comes standard with all engines, while an automatic is available on all but the JCW model. Reviewers loved the Clubman’s composed, agile handling, but some also said that the ride can feel stiff on less than perfect road surfaces. The base Clubman achieves an EPA-estimated 27/35 mpg city/highway, which is on par for the class.

While reviewers appreciated that the Clubman’s larger dimensions give it more interior space than the regular Cooper, some test drivers noted that the Clubman still isn’t as roomy as other rivals. However, some test drivers appreciated the rear suicide door on the passenger side, which eases access to the rear row. The Clubman has similar interior styling and controls to the rest of the Mini line, and while reviewers said that the large centrally-located speedometer and toggle switches may add visual interest, they aren’t as user-friendly as they could be. Leather bucket seats and Recaro bucket seats were both available features when it was new. Other notable features that were available include Bluetooth, the Mini Connected infotainment system, navigation and parking sensors.

See the full 2012 Mini Cooper Clubman specs »

Other Cars to Consider

If you’re drawn to the Clubman’s nimble driving dynamics, but want a car with more passenger and cargo space, consider the 2012 Volkswagen GTI. Reviewers said the GTI offers a great balance of ride comfort and sporty handling. The GTI also is available as a four-door model, which makes it easier for rear passengers to get in and out.

The 2012 Ford Focus received reviewer praise for its composed and comfortable ride, as well as its practical, high-quality interior. The Focus is available in either sedan or hatchback body styles.

Compare the Clubman, GTI and Focus »


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