MINI Hatch (2002 – 2007) Review

MINI Hatch (2002 – 2007) At A Glance


+Fast and fun.

-Noisy and harsh (like a Mini Cooper S should be). Wearing on the motorway. No standard a/c. Needs expensive spec upgrades. 17" wheels destroy ride comfort.

On average it achieves 88% of the official MPG figure

Car seat chooser

Child seats that fit a MINI Hatch (2002 – 2007)

Our unique Car Seat Chooser shows you which child car seats will fit this car and which seat positions that they will fit, so that you don't have to check every car seat manufacturer's website for compatibility.

Which car seat will suit you?

Real MPG average for a MINI Hatch (2002 – 2007)


Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

23–36 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

Satisfaction Index

Satisfaction Index What is your car like to live with?

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Ask Honest John

I have £6000 for a fun, economic and reliable car - any suggestions?
"I have about £6000 to spend on a used car. I'll use it for a daily 25 mile commute in rush hour and, as my wife has a Volkswagen Up!, it will be our main car for longer journeys. I'd like a balance of fun, good fuel economy (at least 30mpg), comfort (for those dark, icy days) and reliability. I'm thinking a Ford Fiesta 1.6 petrol Or a Honda Civic Type S. Or an older MINI Cooper S/DS3 THP. Which do you think I should I go for or can you think of any alternatives?"
£6000 will probably get you a first generation Fiesta ST, which is a bit raw but fun. MINI generally aren't very reliable. The DS3 1.6 THP 150 is fun and comfortable but can have timing chain problems. The Civic 1.8 i-VTEC SE makes more sense than the 3-door Type S and does over 40mpg.
Answered by Honest John
Liability after selling privately - what are my options?
"Sorry - slightly long question: I have sold my Mini Cooper S 07 plate 134k miles privately to a cash buyer. Following his test drive, I noticed an engine warning light come on. I notified the interested buyer and took the car to an independent Mini specialist. They could find no fault at time of testing and reset the warning light - suggested that they could have another look if the light came on again. I notified the buyer and when he came to buy the car, I gave him the garage report which set all this out in writing. I answered all other questions about the car honestly and withheld nothing. He bought the car (advertised at £3030) for £2500 because he was "concerned about the high mileage". Two days later he called to inform me that the warning light had come on and he was going to take it in for investigation. Yesterday he called to say that the unspecified garage he had taken it to have told him the turbo is failing and will need to be replaced - reconditioned at £1000 or new at £2000. He asked me to take the car back which I refused to consider. I believe I am under no obligation to do anything but if I was to offer some contribution out of sympathy, would I be effectively admitting any liability? Thanks in advance for any advice, HJ. "
You are right. You were completely upfront about the car so there was no breach of contract which are the only grounds he could sue you over.
Answered by Honest John
MINI losing water - what's the fault?
"My girlfriend's MINI was getting its MoT recently and the mechanic said the water pump had a slight leak. Since then the radiator reservoir needs filling every week. The heater is also taking ages to warm up, so I assumed it was lack of water, Would the pump seem to be the problem? I'm no mechanic but just looking for ideas before I take it to garage. I can't see any major puddles under the car."
This: 27-1-2013: Coolant pipe to heater matrix can gradually get worn through by part of the gearchange linkage, leading to loss of coolant and potential overheating/head gasket problems. Is on the list here:
Answered by Honest John
MINI rear wheels making a rubbing noise
"My MINI Cooper S (2002) has started making a rubbing noise at slow speeds. It appears to be coming from the rear wheels, any idea what could be the cause?"
Could be that a suspension arm bush is worn and that the inner wall of one of the back tyres is rubbing against the damper. I used to get this on original Minis. Not heard of it on BMW MINIs before.
Answered by Honest John
More Questions

What does a MINI Hatch (2002 – 2007) cost?