MINI has unveiled the all-new, 2017 Countryman, the biggest vehicle it has ever made. Not only is it larger than before, but the new Countryman also looks more like a crossover and offers MINI’s first-ever plug-in hybrid.
The new Countryman is now 7.8 inches longer than the previous-gen model and has a 2.9-inch longer wheelbase, meaning more interior room.
Although the British crossover’s proportions have changed little, it features a more chiseled and rugged look characterized by sharper headlights, beefier rear haunches, and a more upright rear end.
The interior is nearly identical to that of the latest Clubman, with the speedometer moving from the center console to behind the steering wheel, clearing up space for a 6.5-inch touch screen that comes standard.
The overall cabin offers more room for five adults and boasts 30-percent more trunk space, while the long list of standard features also includes keyless entry, parking sensors, a panoramic sunroof, and alloy wheels.
Buyers now have three versions of the Countryman to choose from: Cooper, Cooper S and the Cooper S E ALL4 plug-in hybrid. The base Countryman Cooper is powered by a turbocharged 1.5L three-cylinder engine that makes 134 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque, while the sportier Cooper S makes due with a notably more powerful turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder unit with 189-hp and 207 pound-feet.
Both models come standard with with a six-speed manual transmission and a front-wheel drive setup, but buyers have the option of all-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic gearbox. A 2.0-liter diesel rated at 148-hp (150PS) in the Cooper D and 187-hp (190PS) in the Cooper SD will be offered in Europe but not North America.
The Countryman Cooper plug-in hybrid combines the 3-cylinder engine with an electric motor to produce a combined output of 221-hp. It is capable of driving up to 24 miles (39 km) on electric power only.
Interestingly, with a 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) sprint of 6.8 seconds, the plug-in Countryman is the fastest member of the family.
The all-new, second-generation MINI Countryman goes on sale in March 2017 after making its world debut at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show. The Cooper S E ALL4 plug-in hybrid arrive a few months later in June.
Will you consider any of the three variants for your next vehicle purchase?