$18,260 - $30,582

2018 MINI Cooper Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 7.6

The 2018 Mini Cooper blends playful elements with upscale materials, resulting in a cabin that feels refined and unique. The front seats are comfortable, and a pleasing array of features comes standard. For larger crews, the Cooper's usefulness is as limited as its rear-seat legroom and cargo space.

  • "Step into the 2017 Mini Hardtop and you'll find a cabin with materials of a higher quality than those in other small cars. Soft-touch plastics coat the doors and dashboard, which can be customized with several different trim coverings. Ambient lighting on the doors changes color depending on which driving mode is selected." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • "There's a dichotomy between the 2017 Mini Cooper Hardtop and Convertible interiors' blend of modern tech and retro styling. The huge circular center display now houses the standard 6.5-inch infotainment screen, while the various toggles have a retro look yet control modern functions like the keyless ignition." -- Kelley Blue Book (2017)

Seating

The Cooper has room for four people (in two-door models) or five people (in four-door models) and comes standard with leatherette upholstery. Upgrades include leather seats, heated front seats, and sport seats. The front seats are well-cushioned and provide a comfortable riding position. There isn't much room in the back seat, and travelers in the Hardtop 2 Door will feel especially cramped. Between the Hardtop 4 Door's extra 1.5 inches of second-row legroom and indents in the front seats, tall travelers can make due during brief excursions.

For child safety seats, the back seat has two sets of LATCH anchors on the outboard seats and a third tether anchor in four-door models. The lower anchors are hard to find, and it takes a bit of effort to attach a car seat to them once you do. The tether anchors are much easier to locate and use.

  • "The front seats are thankfully one area where Mini has left things modern, and these comfy chairs are complemented by clever packaging and even an available head-up display on the windshield." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • The Hardtop's front seats offer firm support and an ideal driving position. Whether you choose the two-door or the four-door, though, rear passenger space is pretty tight." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • "The Hardtop 4-Door, as Mini has dubbed it, packs 2.9 additional inches of wheelbase and is 6.3 inches longer overall. More than half of the extra wheelbase (1.5 inches) goes into rear seat legroom, and it transforms those perches into somewhat usable stowage for grown-ups. Steerage class still isn't spacious, but thanks to deeply hollowed out front seatbacks, a near-six-footer can sit behind a similarly sized driver without embedding his knees permanently in the seat structure. A slightly taller roof that's more horizontal than the three-door's provides adequate headroom." -- Car and Driver (2015)

Interior Features

Mini added a rearview camera and parking sensors as standard equipment for the 2018 Cooper. The base model also comes with an infotainment system with a 6.5-inch screen, enhanced smartphone integration, Bluetooth, a USB port, six speakers, automatic climate control, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and automatic headlights. Available features include an 8.8-inch infotainment screen, navigation with real-time traffic, a 12-speaker Harman Kardon premium sound system, satellite radio, a panoramic sunroof, a proximity key, a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, and automatic parking assist.

The cabin may have retro styling, but it's also home to plenty of modern technology, including a crisp infotainment screen, which is easy to control. Available LED lights surround this screen and change color depending on the drive mode, adding an element of playfulness. Switches and gauges are clearly marked and easy to reach.

See 2018 Mini Cooper specs »

  • "Inside, today's Cooper offers better materials as well as controls that have sacrificed some whimsy in favor of improved function. We approve. At the same time, there are still plenty of unique elements that make a MINI a MINI. There are still toggle switches, special upholstery and trim types, and our personal favorite feature: the circular center display, which boasts a novel ring of LED lights. They serve a number of different functions, acting as a tachometer, parking proximity display and even an alert for upcoming navigation system directions." -- Autotrader (2017)
  • "The Mini's controls are easy to reach, and the toggle switches on the lower part of the center stack are a cool touch. We like the Hardtop's easy-to-read gauges, and the available 8.8-inch central display screen is notable for its sophisticated feature set and exceptionally crisp graphics. Similar to BMW's iDrive, the display is operated by a controller knob on the center console. It takes some time to learn how to use, but overall it's a comprehensive and very useful system. One downside is that when you lower the center armrest, it's nearly impossible to reach the low-mounted infotainment controller." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • "The infotainment system is a version of iDrive, which has matured into an intuitive and easy-to-use system. As this is a modern Mini and not a clinical German hatch, whimsical touches like the glowing and color changing mood right around the screen can be found on the inside." -- Autoweek (2015)

Cargo

The Cooper has less cargo space than most cars in its class. Behind the back seat, the cargo area measures 8.7 cubic feet in the Hardtop 2 Door, 13.1 cubic feet in the Hardtop 4 Door, and 5.7 cubic feet in the convertible. When you lay down the seat in the hardtop models, total capacity is closer to its rivals, at 34 cubic feet with two doors and 40.7 cubic feet with four doors.

  • Cargo capacity for the two-door measures a puny 8.7 cubic feet behind the rear seatbacks, expanding to 34 cubes with those seatbacks folded down. … Even the two-door's numbers actually aren't terrible for the subcompact class, and as we learned from a yearlong test of a 2014 Mini Cooper hatchback, the car's boxy shape makes it more versatile than you might think." -- Edmunds (2017)
  • A new 60/40 folding seatback allows this additional volume to be allocated between passengers and stuff as needed. The Hardtop 4-Door still can't match the packaging magic of the Honda Fit, and is more like the Ford Fiesta in both exterior size and interior space." -- Car and Driver (2015)
  • "But appeal is one thing, and utility is another. As wonderful as MINIs are to slip into tight spaces, they're not much help when you need to haul four adults or bulky cargo. That's especially true with the ragtop model; as the convertible top pretty much ensures that you'll never fit sizable objects in back." -- Autotrader (2015)

Find the Best Price

Enter your zip code to get local pricing.

Get Dealer Quotes

To get dealer quotes, enter your zip code.

Search Used Listings

To search used listings, enter your zip code.

Change Location

Enter your zip code to see listings near you.

Please enter a valid zipcode

Best Price Program

Interested in a New?

Use the U.S. News Best Price Program to find great deals and get upfront pricing on the.

Dismiss