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  #1  
Old 11-13-2007, 11:12 AM
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RWD to MINI: How annoying are the FWD characteristics?

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?
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  #2  
Old 11-13-2007, 11:19 AM
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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?
Is someone not happy with his RX8? Has that same someone been reading JST posts about his new Mini

I've driven the Mini convertible enough to make a pretty good assessment of it - I think it's fantastically fun to drive, it has rapid fire steering and a nice clutch/shifter feel.

Torque steer is going to be there under certain conditions, but here's the thing, the Mini is so short and light, it rotates really nicely quite easily - that little novelty in and of itself makes it waaaay more fun than say, a new 3 series.

Add to that great gas mileage, an active car club culture, the space and snow driving benefits of FWD and you have a winner.

And it's pretty cheap.

So why don't I have one?

Don't know.....

Ed
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  #3  
Old 11-13-2007, 11:24 AM
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I'm very happy with everything about my RX-8.

Except the gas mileage. And gas is getting much more expensive.

I'm just daydreaming. Selling the wife on a car swap would have to be very creative. The gas savings would help, but probably would not be enough.

EDIT: And I've also read ff's posts about his MINI experience.
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Last edited by Plaz; 11-13-2007 at 11:26 AM.
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  #4  
Old 11-13-2007, 11:51 AM
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Well, Thank you Plaz for resurrecting my day-dream.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=237968

Argh, they are such cute little blighters...every time I see one I think I'll just have to go down and pick one out to bring home to take care of... Hmmm... Hmmm...34 MPG...Hmmm...
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  #5  
Old 11-13-2007, 11:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plaz View Post


I'm very happy with everything about my RX-8.

Except the gas mileage. And gas is getting much more expensive.

I'm just daydreaming. Selling the wife on a car swap would have to be very creative. The gas savings would help, but probably would not be enough.

EDIT: And I've also read ff's posts about his MINI experience.
Search Blueguy's posts about his Mini - he traded his E90 for it.

Ed
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  #6  
Old 11-13-2007, 12:44 PM
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I think the resistance to FWD is way overrated. I had a 2006 MINI S with LSD, swapped out the stock wheels/tires for aftermarket wheels/performance tires, and went to town. Sure it's different but it was never lacking in control or fun. Go to any autocross and watch the MINI's humble almost all of the Bimmers there. I had to let it go when I bought my Cayman S on a whim, but I'm pretty sure there will be another in my future. Since I ordered mine with LSD (a bargain at $500) I don't know how much the car would lack without it.
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  #7  
Old 11-13-2007, 01:05 PM
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I think I might need to drive one.
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  #8  
Old 11-13-2007, 02:29 PM
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I think I might need to drive one.
Just to complicate the issue:

Z4 3.0si coupes are now available, brand new, in the mid 30's (thanks to the steep incentives).

I think you need to go drive one of those too.

Ed
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  #9  
Old 11-13-2007, 02:29 PM
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My wife recently picked up an 07 Cooper S. It's a great drive, but I have to admit the torque steer off the line is quite a bit to handle. It's actually hard to keep the car straight. Such a fun drive though, I love that car, but I could do without all the torque steer.
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  #10  
Old 11-13-2007, 02:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdCT View Post
Just to complicate the issue:

Z4 3.0si coupes are now available, brand new, in the mid 30's (thanks to the steep incentives).

I think you need to go drive one of those too.

Ed
Naah. I need rear seats. Or at least an imitation of some.
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  #11  
Old 11-13-2007, 02:35 PM
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Originally Posted by phantombmw View Post
My wife recently picked up an 07 Cooper S. It's a great drive, but I have to admit the torque steer off the line is quite a bit to handle. It's actually hard to keep the car straight. Such a fun drive though, I love that car, but I could do without all the torque steer.
Seems to be a consistent criticism.

Does your wife's S have the LSD?
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  #12  
Old 11-13-2007, 02:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plaz View Post
Seems to be a consistent criticism.

Does your wife's S have the LSD?
I've got an LSD in my S, and it's still torque steery goodness Sure makes the car feel fast.
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  #13  
Old 11-14-2007, 06:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Plaz View Post
Seems to be a consistent criticism.

Does your wife's S have the LSD?
It does not, it's a pretty base S with just the sport package and heated seats and a couple interior bits. Still a great car though.
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  #14  
Old 11-14-2007, 08:11 AM
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http://money.cnn.com/galleries/2007/..._top_10/4.html

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  #15  
Old 11-14-2007, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by wingspan View Post


The scary thing is I keep looking at this thing, even though all the fears I have about it have been confirmed repeatedly.

I need to go drive one.
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  #16  
Old 11-14-2007, 08:16 AM
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I wouldn't put too much stock in that article, the G37's been out for, like, three days and they're already predicting it'll be a strong resale performer

There's no rhyme or reason for it.

Ed
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  #17  
Old 11-14-2007, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Plaz View Post


The scary thing is I keep looking at this thing, even though all the fears I have about it have been confirmed repeatedly.

I need to go drive one.
I know what you're doing, you're focusing on that one aspect - torque steer, and it's driving you nuts.

Keep in mind all the other benefits: light weight, small size, great steering, gearbox etc - all these things sort of mix and match and dull the one thing you can't sleep at night over....

You could "embrace" the tradition of FWD and remember how phenomenally well Mini's did in the 60's and 70's world rally competitions, and how, even today, some of BMW's top club drivers own minis for themselves.....

Or you could wait for the one series...

Or drive a TT coupe - which does have aback seat, AWD and a huge price tag.

Ed
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  #18  
Old 11-14-2007, 08:37 AM
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In my experience, the Mini feels like a nice sharp version of a BMW up to about 60%. After that, you have to adjust your driving and face the fact that it's FWD.
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  #19  
Old 11-14-2007, 08:55 AM
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In my experience, the Mini feels like a nice sharp version of a BMW up to about 60%. After that, you have to adjust your driving and face the fact that it's FWD.
Honestly, 60% of a BMW is probably all I need at this point in my life, and in the draconian northeast.
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  #20  
Old 11-14-2007, 09:06 AM
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Honestly, 60% of a BMW is probably all I need at this point in my life, and in the draconian northeast.
I'd say more like 80 percent - the Mini vert I've driven feels a lot like a Z4 (and almost nothing at all like an E46).

I also think people make much too much of the fwd vs rwd thing - I've owned many cars of both types and fun is not necessarily tied to the platform - the Mini is sooooo much fun in so many other ways a typical E46 isn't - there really isn't a comparison, IMO.

Ask yourself honestly, what difference would fwd vs rwd make driving on public roads (with the exception of the occasional wet start)

Now, otoh, an E46 ZHP is a different story - I know you had a bad experience with the strut towers on your (standard) E46, but a late model E46 ZHP CPO would be an excellent kill for you (unless you just want something different).

Sorry to go off in so many tangents, but I'm selfishly re-living my waffling through you at the moment.

Ed
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  #21  
Old 11-14-2007, 09:41 AM
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I'd say more like 80 percent - the Mini vert I've driven feels a lot like a Z4 (and almost nothing at all like an E46).

I also think people make much too much of the fwd vs rwd thing - I've owned many cars of both types and fun is not necessarily tied to the platform - the Mini is sooooo much fun in so many other ways a typical E46 isn't - there really isn't a comparison, IMO.

Ask yourself honestly, what difference would fwd vs rwd make driving on public roads (with the exception of the occasional wet start)

Now, otoh, an E46 ZHP is a different story - I know you had a bad experience with the strut towers on your (standard) E46, but a late model E46 ZHP CPO would be an excellent kill for you (unless you just want something different).

Sorry to go off in so many tangents, but I'm selfishly re-living my waffling through you at the moment.

Ed
Not getting into another E46. They're great, but I've had my fill. If I replace the RX-8, it will be to stay in something small and tossable, but with better MPG.

If I were to get into a bigger coupe/sedan again, I think I'd go for either a 135, a Nissan G, or possibly a 335 coupe. But that's not how I'm thinking. Today.
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  #22  
Old 11-14-2007, 11:53 AM
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Not getting into another E46. They're great, but I've had my fill. If I replace the RX-8, it will be to stay in something small and tossable, but with better MPG.

If I were to get into a bigger coupe/sedan again, I think I'd go for either a 135, a Nissan G, or possibly a 335 coupe. But that's not how I'm thinking. Today.
I understand, I'm on my second E46 and it's a bit tiresome looking at the same instrument panel all over again....

I'm quite interested in driving the G37 coupe - it comes with a six speed and an LSD and is priced really well - back seat, too (Nissan's doing a vert version, too).

I've driven the e92 coupes, both 335 and 328 and the e90 sedans. I've even had an opportunity to drive an E93 - they're all wonderful cars - they're just not particularly exciting - and they're pricey.

Anyway, when you drive the Mini - don't immediately crank the wheel hard right and mash the accelerator, ok? Do that at the end of the test drive.....

Ed
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  #23  
Old 11-14-2007, 03:16 PM
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I own an E36 325IS and I work for a BMW/MINI dealership so I have driven just about every model. I like the Mini's for every day commutin type of driving. They can be alot of fun, but I would NEVER consider trading my 3 for a Mini or any FWD car. I don't care how sharp it feels, it's still FWD.
Besides, the new VW GTi is in the same price range as a Mini and it is too superior for words to describe.
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  #24  
Old 11-14-2007, 09:12 PM
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My wife has an 07 Mini S. It's real eye candy and sporty to drive but, the RFT's are to noisy and the torgue steer is a nuisance on the all to often wet NW roads. I much prefer the stable handling of my 06 330xi. Beach Bimmer.
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  #25  
Old 11-14-2007, 09:52 PM
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I have had my 07 MCSa for a month now (still under the break in milage, so that tempers part of my evaluation). I had an E46 coupe (323Ci) for 7.5 years that was a trouble-free example (I mean, nada, zero). Yes, even keeping it under 4.5k rpm and with the autobox, there is torque-steer in gears 1-3 in the MINI. It is quick and responsive, but does it feel like a BMW-nope. I am looking at getting an E30 for fun (local car-excellent shape) because I miss the feel of my old car. The R56 is sooo much different and hard to get use to the controls, etc. Would I do it again. NO! (I wish I had my old coupe back...). And, to add to the pain, my coupe averaged 32-33mpg on the routes that my MINI is averaging 30-31 (granted, it is not broken it yet).
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