Mini's largest model gets new engines, a plug-in hybrid option, and plenty of modern updates.

After six years on the market, the Mini Countryman is finally getting a much-needed new generation. Along with a new look, a range of new engine options and an even bigger body will be put on display for all to see when the LA Auto Show opens its doors next month.

The new design doesn’t stray much from the outgoing generation, the most immediately noticeable new cue coming in the fascia. A split-grille design – separated by a big hunk of piano black plastic – compliments the more shapely standard LED headlamps and foglamps. That distinctive look continues throughout the body, accented by a heightened ground clearance, roof rails, and some signature Mini quirkiness.

2017 Mini Countryman
2017 Mini Countryman

Almost eight inches longer than the outgoing generation, this new Countryman is the biggest one yet, for better or worse. The wheelbase has been extended by 2.9 inches, and paves the way to a more spacious interior with room enough for five, or 47.6 cubic feet of usable space with the rear seats folded flat. That new number represents a healthy 5.4 cubic feet of extra space over the outgoing model. An optional power opening tailgate and a rear bench feature is also unique for the 2017 model year.

To compliment this upgraded new style, the Countryman will feature two new engines, both improving on power and efficiency. The 1.5-liter three-cylinder option is good for 134 horsepower (99 kilowatts) and 162 pound-feet (219 Newton-meters) of torque, while the new 2.0-liter four-cylinder option will pump out 189 horsepower (140 kilowatts) and 207 pound-feet (280 newton-meters) of torque. But pure gasoline won’t be your only choice – the range will soon extend to include a plug-in hybrid setup with 221 horsepower on tap. Click here to read more about that model.

2017 Mini Countryman
2017 Mini Countryman

Both gasoline engines can be configured with either front- or all-wheel drive, and come paired standard to a six-speed manual transmission. Opt for the Cooper S Countryman, the Cooper S Countryman All4, or the Cooper Countryman All4, though, and you can have yourself an eight-speed Steptronic automatic transmission instead. If you want the base Cooper Countryman with an automatic, you only get six forward gears.

On the inside, the added interior volume allows for even more connectivity between driver, passenger, and Mini. A central instrument console with an 8.8-inch touchscreen display remains the focal point, using an Open Mobility Cloud, it allows you to integrate your vehicle to your iPhone or Apple Watch, and vice versa.

More details, including pricing and a release date, will be revealed when the Countryman takes to the stage at the LA Auto Show.

 Source: Mini

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