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I had an 06 MINI Cooper S, and it was my absolute favorite car I've ever owned. I only had it a year and a half and had to let it go for financial reasons (couldn't afford the new car payment) but i would own one again. I had ZERO issues with the car. The MINI is actually one reason i thought i would like the FIAT. It created my love of small Euro cars. The 2 are VERY similar but the FIAT seems a bit more modern looking and updated. Not to mention its a lot cheaper. But don't think i haven't considered a used 05-06 MINI instead of the FIAT 500 that im looking at.
 

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I have a modded 2005 Mini Cooper S that just turned 160k, still on original everything other than replacing the power steering pump and other routine maintenance items- probably one of the most reliable cars I have owned. Like someone already said, not a fan of the newer turbo MCS but prefer the 05/06 supercharged cars. Mini owners group is one of the best.

Waiting for the Abarth but may go ahead and get a Sport if I continue to drive to local clients in the SE to keep miles off the Mini, also thought about replacing my daughter's E30 with a Pop.
 

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I own both an 06 MCS and 500 Sport. The MINI is way more fun in different ways then the 500. My MINI is HIGHLY modified soon to be a 390whp pump fuel / 400+whp Meth injected street toy. The 500 is my daily driver that is zippy, just as unique as my MINI, agile, and freaking amazing on gas.
 

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I have a 500, but I would consider a Mini...It's a BMW and I've had 5 of those. Great cars. BTW, just out of curiosity I checked out the Smart car forum. Kinda sad and the car is crashing and burning. That's one car I would never get. I can think of very little good to say about it, but I'd never go around insulting people who like them. Having a 500, I know how annoying it is to see ignorant remarks by people who have no clue what they are talking about.
 

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Oh, and the people in the MINI club are, as a rule, very nice.
:D

I haven't had any issues with my 08 Clubman S. In fact, if I ended up getting an Abarth I'd probably keep the MINI as well. In three years, I've not once been displeased with owning it or considered selling it for something else.

I wouldn't get a new MINI...the engine in them are pieces of crap.
What don't you like about it? From a durability standpoint the timing chain and HPFP issues have been addressed, plus the fuel pump warranty has been extended to 10 years (for the record, I've had neither issue). From a performance standpoint, it was on Ward's 10 Best Engines list last year and won the 1.4-1.8L category as International Engine of the Year every year since 2007. And since they've figured out how to tune it, it's just as easy to get power out of as the older supercharged engines.
 

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The 02-04 mini s had it's fair share of problems and that's where most of the complaints came from. Anyone who has actually driven a mini s knows they are one of the most fun cars to drive. I almost sold my 500 to get an 06 mini s but there's something about the 500 that I love. I spent a day with the mini s and I find the 500 a lot more comfortable as a daily driver. I'd imagine the abarth will be a little bit more harsh but I still want one
 

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The Mini is produced by BMW. BMW is known to be buggy and problematic. More you drive it, the older it gets, more problems arise than you would have on an average car. Great car to have when in warranty and traded in when it runs out.

I was between a Mini and a 500. I decided on a 500 because... 6k less for the same features and better reliability. The history of the 500 outside of has shown strong reliability.

I'm not dissing the Mini. Still love the design and feel of a new Mini. I'm just not loaded to keep it running. If you have the extra money to toss around go for it! :p
 

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The 02-04 mini s had it's fair share of problems and that's where most of the complaints came from. Anyone who has actually driven a mini s knows they are one of the most fun cars to drive. I almost sold my 500 to get an 06 mini s but there's something about the 500 that I love. I spent a day with the mini s and I find the 500 a lot more comfortable as a daily driver. I'd imagine the abarth will be a little bit more harsh but I still want one
 

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I have a 500, but I would consider a Mini...It's a BMW and I've had 5 of those. Great cars. BTW, just out of curiosity I checked out the Smart car forum. Kinda sad and the car is crashing and burning. That's one car I would never get. I can think of very little good to say about it, but I'd never go around insulting people who like them. Having a 500, I know how annoying it is to see ignorant remarks by people who have no clue what they are talking about.
I had a Smart. I miss it a lot. Checking out the forum will do no good to you. Driving it is a different deal altogether. They only have about around 80hp but take into consideration that they are a 1 liter, 3 cylinder engine and only weigh around 1800. I love my 500 but it is a 1.4 liter with 101 hp that weighs almost 2400 pounds. Yes, a 500 is more practical and just as fun to drive but Smart cars are amazing.

I did have 3 problems with the Smart though:

1. Transmission was jerky (but you get used to it, after a while it's even fun and it makes a big difference if you learn to accelerate at a given pace).
2. It's shape and weight made it susceptible to get knocked around by winds. I'm talking about 50 + mph winds. Again, you get used to it.
3. It only had two seats ... duh.

It did have a pretty dynamic interior that made the car feel really roomy inside. And I never complained that I was getting 50 mpg's.

A lot of people (specially in the US) are sketchy about the Smart and possess terrible misconceptions about it. Overall, it is a fun car with a fantastic economy.

Here are some pics of the one I traded for my Fiat. It was the US Brabus edition.









 
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