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  #26  
Old 11-14-2007, 10:29 PM
bimmerboyz bimmerboyz is offline
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We had an 05 Mini. Ordered it in Oct of 04 and paid ~$18k. Traded it in May of '06 with 44k miles on it for $21,500. Ours was the little guy with no power so we didn't have torque steer too bad, but it was a really fun car. It was one of the only cars we wished we would have kept.
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  #27  
Old 11-15-2007, 09:15 AM
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brkf brkf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plaz View Post
For those of you who switched from a BMW or other RWD car to the MINI, just how annoying is the torque steer?

Does the LSD option really alleviate it?

Do you get annoying, power-sapping FWD wheelspin when trying to aggressively accelerate from a stop?

Do you miss the feeling of the car "hunkering down" when you give it a little extra throttle in a turn?
I really, really don't like the FWD layout. The car is fun, agile and a joy to use in the city but frankling FWD sucks major butt after years of driving RWD. While I enjoy many aspects of the car, when I push the car hard into corners or accelerate hard I miss my BMWs.

It's a toss up - for hard driving and especially cornering, I definitely prefer RWD and the BMW suspension. For day-to-day driving, traffic, around town, economy the Cooper S is a smile-creator. At 30 MPGs I'm getting 33% fuel economy than my e90. The car's great fun for just the two of us too but if we need to transport people or large quantities, we have to switch to my wife's A3.

When the mini leaves I'm sure I'll miss it...but I also miss the feeling of a perfect corner.

Last edited by brkf; 11-15-2007 at 09:19 AM.
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  #28  
Old 11-15-2007, 10:20 AM
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Plaz Plaz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueguydotcom View Post
I really, really don't like the FWD layout. The car is fun, agile and a joy to use in the city but frankling FWD sucks major butt after years of driving RWD. While I enjoy many aspects of the car, when I push the car hard into corners or accelerate hard I miss my BMWs.

It's a toss up - for hard driving and especially cornering, I definitely prefer RWD and the BMW suspension. For day-to-day driving, traffic, around town, economy the Cooper S is a smile-creator. At 30 MPGs I'm getting 33% fuel economy than my e90. The car's great fun for just the two of us too but if we need to transport people or large quantities, we have to switch to my wife's A3.

When the mini leaves I'm sure I'll miss it...but I also miss the feeling of a perfect corner.
Yeah... I need to come to terms with that. But frankly, as I look over my daily commute in my head, I have the opportunity for that "perfect corner" feeling maybe twice a day. And those aren't even corners, really (on/off ramps).

I think if I look at the gas savings (probably close to $3K per year in my case), plus the much better depreciation curve, I can probably come close to making a reasonable case on paper for bailing on my RX-8 this early in favor of a Cooper S. (I bought the Mazda in March 07). I just have to figure out if I really want to.

Obviously, I need to go drive one.
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Last edited by Plaz; 11-15-2007 at 10:31 AM.
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  #29  
Old 11-19-2007, 08:45 PM
khor01 khor01 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2007 MINI Cooper S
Hi Plaz,

my daily is an e92 328i sport (23K miles). My "weekend" car is a 2007 MCS 6spd, with sport suspension and LSD. "Weekend" because it's actually my wife's car

Here are my impressions:

1st impression after driving the MCS from the dealer, and then my car: "My bimmer feels like a boat." (This basically is due to the fact that the MCS is ~500-600 lbs lighter).

On TORQUE STEER: I have driven the MCS for about ~1500 miles, and I am still not used to the torque steer. I've gotten better with it, but if you're driving hard, it feels like you're constantly fighting the car to make it go where you want to.

On overall handling: FWD seems to be prone to more wheel hop than the RWD. When both cars were on run-flats, the MCS stuck a little more before breaking out sideways. With Z-rated dunlops on my bimmer, I feel it sticks better. MCS is more nimble (i.e. I think it would beat the bimmer on a slalom).

On engine: Everytime I drive the MCS, and then return to my bimmer, I truly appreciate how amazingly buttery the BMW engine is. So nice

Some things that I don't like about the MCS:
1. No active headlights (or whatever they're called on the bimmer where the headlights turn with your steering wheel). This makes a HUGE difference when you're trying to hit an apex at night.
2. Some rattles (the bimmer has them too)

Overall, R56 MCS is absolutely fun to drive, and is definitely a win-win if you convince your lady to get one
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  #30  
Old 12-03-2007, 07:46 PM
RichQY RichQY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plaz View Post
For those of you who switched from a BMW or other RWD car to the MINI, just how annoying is the torque steer?

Does the LSD option really alleviate it?

Do you get annoying, power-sapping FWD wheelspin when trying to aggressively accelerate from a stop?

Do you miss the feeling of the car "hunkering down" when you give it a little extra throttle in a turn?
If you are coming from a Rx8, you will probably feel a big difference, due to the following obvious factors.

1. Layout
2. power delivery
3. weight and balance


When I drove the Rx8, i feel the long (relatively) chasis rotates best under power, and the back suspension does a fabulous job on putting down the low torque figures. The chasis is very well balanced. As I was exiting an apex, I would go almost full throttle asap in 1st or 2nd winding out to the rev line in a linear fashion.

You really have to change your line when switched to a Mini and driving style when you are in a mini. You need to be much more patient when exiting an corner in the mini as the torque comes up very quickly, LSD or not you are shifting weight backward, you will no doubt be disappointed if you want to throttle down like in the RX8 especially in a steady state or decreasing radius corner. That being said, the MCS rotates well, it is very flickable. Power comes up quickly (I feel the turbo is much faster than the SC), clutch/shift is very direct, before you know it, you are too fast. It's very easy to drive fast. Brake is too sensitive though.

When you drive the mini, you will think it's much faster or easy to drive fast than the Rx8.

I taught my cousin how to drive her 07 MCS, i was really surprised how easy it is to go fast. Much easier to drive fast than my Z4 M coupe and STi. Her car has no LSD, it was all until I dived into a banked steady state corner, it was like a reality check that reminds you it is still a wrong wheel drive. On 2nd try, i tossed it in, then it's back to

Please get the LSD, on an highway on ramp with rough surfaces, the NO LSD car was pulling left and right violently, it was down right dangerous!!!

I'd recommend to rent one first, because a quick test drive usually don't do a car justice.
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  #31  
Old 12-03-2007, 08:17 PM
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Plaz Plaz is offline
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Thanks Rich, great insight!
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  #32  
Old 12-04-2007, 01:50 PM
Brian66D Brian66D is offline
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i've never had torque steer issues driving my buddies cooper s....
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  #33  
Old 12-04-2007, 03:16 PM
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denhugh denhugh is offline
same but different
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07? If you haven't experienced it, then you need to push harder on the go pedal because its there. no doubt about it. You just need to be aware of it; especially coming out of corners and accelerating quickly.
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  #34  
Old 12-04-2007, 11:35 PM
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brkf brkf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by denhugh View Post
07? If you haven't experienced it, then you need to push harder on the go pedal because its there. no doubt about it. You just need to be aware of it; especially coming out of corners and accelerating quickly.
no, it's not there if you intelligently apply throttle. Sorry but it's a FWD, therefore in a corner with the weight on the back wheels and pressure on the front uneven, I can't see any logical reason to go WOT with my 07 Cooper S. The rare times I do feel a pull it's because I'm not driving the car correctly. Keep the weight on the front wheels and the torque steer is minimal during hard throttle applications.

It sucks but that's the reality of FWD. I miss my BMW when I'm really pushing the Cooper hard as the better balance and RWD just align better with my driving style. I'm always having to change my driving - how to enter corners, how to exit - to fit the FWD Cooper. But torque steer? Not a problem really.
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  #35  
Old 12-05-2007, 06:38 AM
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denhugh denhugh is offline
same but different
Location: Fayetteville, AR
 
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Certainly part of what you say I've experienced-the need to change driving styles. However, everyone that has tested the MINI (C&D, etc-even Consumer Reports) talks about the torque steer and they obviously drive a lot more of both RWD and FWD than you or me or likely anyone else on this board. I wound never go WOT out of a corner in my MCS, but I even feel the "side to side" pull of torque steer WOT straight ahead (and I have an automatic). I am becoming more "one" with this car, but it will take a little while longer. (I still think I will order a 1 series in a year if they are like I hope...)
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  #36  
Old 12-05-2007, 08:46 AM
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EdCT EdCT is offline
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Fwiw, my two very spirited drives of a mini cooper s (one in the wet) produced no torque steer either, but like BG advocates, I'm always pretty smooth on the throttle - anyone who's grown up driving RWD V8's up hills, on curves in the rain before DSC, knows about this sort of thing

Ed
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  #37  
Old 12-09-2007, 11:39 AM
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uter uter is offline
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After a long history of BMW's (e28, e34 touring, e46 touring, e61) I'm experiencing very similar findings to other posters in my '07 MCS with LSD and sport suspension. It's a really fun drive, but the limitations of off-the-line torque steer can't be overlooked.

I enjoy this car immensely, but everynow and then I need a little "RWD fix" and I go drive my wife's e92 328. It's bigger, but the e92 does have its own satisfaction.

All in all, had the 1-series been an option a year ago, I'd have looked quite hard at it for RWD satisfaction and back seats for kids (here's a picture of car seats in my MCS. Say, if you need a back seat, I sat in the MINI Clubman at the LA autoshow and it was very roomy.
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  #38  
Old 12-09-2007, 12:32 PM
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triggs triggs is offline
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I was actually thinking of getting the 07 MCS for my daily commute car. Thanks for the input guys.
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  #39  
Old 12-09-2007, 01:27 PM
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Plaz Plaz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueguydotcom View Post
no, it's not there if you intelligently apply throttle. Sorry but it's a FWD, therefore in a corner with the weight on the back wheels and pressure on the front uneven, I can't see any logical reason to go WOT with my 07 Cooper S. The rare times I do feel a pull it's because I'm not driving the car correctly. Keep the weight on the front wheels and the torque steer is minimal during hard throttle applications.

It sucks but that's the reality of FWD. I miss my BMW when I'm really pushing the Cooper hard as the better balance and RWD just align better with my driving style. I'm always having to change my driving - how to enter corners, how to exit - to fit the FWD Cooper. But torque steer? Not a problem really.
Okay, here's a toughie:

All things considered, if you were forced to assign a single "fun" numerical rating to the day-to-day driving experience, 1-10 with 10 being most fun and 1 being a GMC Jimmy with a bad alignment and bald tires, where would you rank your E46, E90, and MCS?
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  #40  
Old 12-10-2007, 08:46 AM
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mtbscott mtbscott is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plaz View Post
Okay, here's a toughie:

All things considered, if you were forced to assign a single "fun" numerical rating to the day-to-day driving experience, 1-10 with 10 being most fun and 1 being a GMC Jimmy with a bad alignment and bald tires, where would you rank your E46, E90, and MCS?
I am thinking purely in fun to drive which includes the subjective handling/power/smile factor (on recent cars I own/owned):
Porsche Cayman S (10)
2006 MINI MCS with LSD (9)
2003 E46 M3 (9)
2003 E46 w/ZHP (8)
2006 Audi A3 w/sport package (7)
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  #41  
Old 12-10-2007, 09:00 AM
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Plaz Plaz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtbscott View Post
I am thinking purely in fun to drive which includes the subjective handling/power/smile factor (on recent cars I own/owned):
Porsche Cayman S (10)
2006 MINI MCS with LSD (9)
2003 E46 M3 (9)
2003 E46 w/ZHP (8)
2006 Audi A3 w/sport package (7)
Interesting!

So you found the MINI to be more fun day-to-day than your non-M E46, despite FWD and less power and speed.

I had an '02 E46 330 (pre-ZHP) that I loved, and was tons of fun to drive. Even with my more limited breadth of experience, I'd probably also give it an 8 on this scale.

Thanks!
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  #42  
Old 12-10-2007, 09:16 AM
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mtbscott mtbscott is offline
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It's taken me many years to reach this point but I now know without reservation that weight is the enemy. A major part of the MINI's appeal is its lightness. It could be made to weigh less, but in general it's light years ahead of most of what's out there today. The M3's power made up (to a point) for its heft, and the 330 was acceptable for its size, but I don't like the trend right now. Each generation of a new car seems to creep up (MINI actually avoided this) and the manufacturer's solution seems to be throw more horsepower at it. BTW, all this talk of MINI's had me looking for a new one the last couple of weeks, but could not find one with LSD in any dealer's inventory. I'm not up for ordering another one yet, but see one in my future. I was very interested in the 1 series until I found they're just barely smaller than a 3 series.
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  #43  
Old 12-10-2007, 09:32 AM
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Plaz Plaz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtbscott View Post
I was very interested in the 1 series until I found they're just barely smaller than a 3 series.
Me too... it looks like it's basically an E46 (and just as expensive) with cheaper materials and some more power. I'd probably enjoy it, but I've already gone down that road -- I want some different fun.

I should mention one other thing too... it's not just the thirstiness of the RX-8 that's getting to me... it's also the near complete lack of low end grunt. It's plenty quick, and winding it up to 9K+ is fun, but some days I wish it could get out of its own way better off the line.
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  #44  
Old 12-10-2007, 11:39 AM
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EdCT EdCT is offline
zeddy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtbscott View Post
It's taken me many years to reach this point but I now know without reservation that weight is the enemy. A major part of the MINI's appeal is its lightness. It could be made to weigh less, but in general it's light years ahead of most of what's out there today. The M3's power made up (to a point) for its heft, and the 330 was acceptable for its size, but I don't like the trend right now. Each generation of a new car seems to creep up (MINI actually avoided this) and the manufacturer's solution seems to be throw more horsepower at it. BTW, all this talk of MINI's had me looking for a new one the last couple of weeks, but could not find one with LSD in any dealer's inventory. I'm not up for ordering another one yet, but see one in my future. I was very interested in the 1 series until I found they're just barely smaller than a 3 series.
What's interesting is I'd rate my ZHP convertible, which is about 600 to 700 lbs heavier than my ex Z4 more fun to drive.

Why, you ask?

It just is It steers better, brakes better, feels better balanced, rides better and makes nicer noises.

And I can toss my jacket in the back seat.

Ed
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