$6,961 - $8,657

2011 MINI Cooper Countryman Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2011 MINI Cooper Countryman was new.


Interior: 7.8

The 2011 Mini Countryman is family-friendly, but it won’t be perfect for everyone. For example, it only seats four, which means couples with three or more kids have to shop elsewhere. However, if you only have two children and probably won’t have more, the Cooper Countryman is a promising option, especially if you eyed the Mini Cooper in the past, but chose a different car because it isn’t family-friendly.

  • "Inside, the Countryman feels significantly less cozy than your standard Mini Cooper coupe driver and passenger bang elbows less often, and the rear seat is a place where adults can sit for longer than a quick trip out to dinner." -- Popular Mechanics
  • "Overall fit and finish is on par with what you'd expect in a Mini. No drastic changes have been made to the major touchable surfaces and the seats remain comfortable and supportive. The standard Mini toggle switches still continue to amuse and confuse, but we're happy the interior refinement has largely been left alone." -- Autoblog


For starters, families with more than four members shouldn’t consider the Mini Cooper Countryman because that’s all it seats. Other than its limited seating capacity, test drivers are pleased with the Cooper Countryman’s cabin because it’s the most spacious one they’ve seen from Mini. A few even say there’s plenty of room for passengers that are six feet tall, a comment we don’t hear for the Mini Cooper. There’s also more hip and elbow room, which all reviewers find to be an improvement, but some say it still isn’t enough space for everyone.

Not only is there more room in the Cooper Countryman, but the driver also gets a more commanding view of the road, a plus more than one reviewer noted.

  • "The thrones back there are firm and comfortable, but their bolstering can’t withstand thrill rides as stoically as the fronts can." -- Car and Driver
  • "The rear seat has impressive headroom and legroom for 6-footers. Entry and exit are good unless front seats are pushed far back. The rear seats slide fore and aft and the seat backs recline." -- Consumer Guide
  • "And with its slightly elevated seating position and ride height, it's a good perch from which to control the car. But be warned, space for hips and shoulders is limited." -- Edmunds
  • "Shoulder space remains surprisingly copious in true Mini fashion (up 7.4 inches in the rear versus the base car). The large windows and elevated seating provide wide, unimpeded views." -- Truck Trend
  • "Instead, there's a wealth of newfound elbow room and headroom, thanks to the substantial increase in width and height over the rest of the Mini range." -- Autoblog

Interior Features

The Mini Cooper Countryman’s interior has a lot going on because Mini gave its newest model the latest tech features. Unfortunately, they aren’t standard and will increase the Cooper Countryman’s base price considerably.

Let’s start with standard features. The base model comes with a leather sport steering wheel that has mounted cruise control and audio controls, a tilt and telescoping steering column, push-button start, an auxiliary input jack, satellite radio and HD radio technology.

If you’re willing to pay for optional packages, Mini has a number you can choose from. There’s the Premium Package, which adds a dual-pane panoramic sunroof and a Harman/Kardon sound system. The Cold Weather Package adds heated front seats, power folding mirrors and heated washer jets. There’s also the Convenience Package, which includes a dimming rearview mirror, a universal garage opener and an iPod adapter.

In the center of the dashboard, you’ll find a speedometer. If you choose the optional navigation, that’s also where you’ll find this tech system. Navigation is paired with Mini Connected, a system that allows you to hook up your iPod and receive Tweets, news, weather reports and email while you’re driving. You can even stream your Pandora Internet radio stations. Reviewers like this system, but one test driver notes that the location of the speedometer makes the driver take his or her eyes off the road.

  • "All the quirkiness expected of this brand is present and accounted for in the Countryman's dash and center console plus a few notable improvements for 2011. While many surfaces are molded plastic, the fit, finish, and material quality is exemplary." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "As in other Mini vehicles, the interior is made of a mix of hard- and soft-touch plastics, all of which feel high-quality and are well assembled." -- Consumer Guide
  • "New for 2011 is Mini Connected, an infotainment system exclusively for customers' iPhones. ... We like the way the system works, and found it cool to listen to local radio stations thousands of miles from home, but it's limited to iPhones and reception is subject to the whims of your AT&T signal." -- Kelley Blue Book


Most reviewers find the Cooper Countryman’s cargo area to be spacious and well-suited for a week’s-worth of luggage. Rear space is optimized when the rear seats are folded. The Cooper Countryman has a maximum cargo capacity of 41.3 cubic feet.

The Cooper Countryman also has an interior storage feature called Center Rail. This center console extends from the front seat to the back seat. Reviewers enjoy this feature because it is versatile. It has removable storage compartments that allow you to connect your iPod or cell phone. However, one test driver noted that the parking brake gets in the way when you store some items.

  • "Countryman has an impressive amount of cargo room with the rear seat backs up. The rear seat backs fold, but don't lay completely flat. It has a cargo cover and large under-floor storage area. The load floor folds up and locks against the rear seat backs to allow storage and hiding of larger items." -- Consumer Guide
  • "With a seats-up cargo capacity of 41.3 cubic feet, there's even enough luggage space for a week in the country." -- Popular Mechanics
  • "What about the cargo area? Is it big? Not really." -- Cars.com
  • "While in most cases, we found the Mini rail system to be highly functional and an attractive feature, the parking brake tends to interfere when tall items are placed in the rail (i.e. an iPhone4 in the rail charger with a tangled power cord)." -- Road and Track

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