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.

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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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2017 Mini Countryman

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Introducing the Biggest, Most Adventurous MINI Yet: The New MINI Countryman

- First ever plug-in hybrid available on Countryman as Cooper S E ALL4 variant
- World Premiere of all three variants at Los Angeles International Auto Show
- Cooper and Cooper S go on sale in March 2017, while Cooper S E ALL4 plug-in hybrid goes on sale in June 2017

Woodcliff Lake, NJ – October 25, 2016 – MINI USA introduced today the biggest, most adventurous MINI ever, the all-new 2017 MINI Countryman. That’s not all. For the first time ever, a MINI model will be offered as a plug-in hybrid, combining the best of both worlds. The MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 will be powered by both a three- cylinder MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology gasoline engine and an electric hybrid synchronous motor. All three of the new MINI Countryman variants will make their World Premiere at the Los Angeles International Auto Show at a press conference on Wednesday, November 16th, at 11:50 am PDT.

The all-new MINI Countryman has been completely redesigned and reengineered from the ground up, yet still is instantly identifiable as a MINI. Now incorporating BMW Group engine technology and vehicle architecture, the all-new MINI Countryman offers an all-turbocharged engine lineup with outstanding acceleration and the go-kart driving dynamics that MINI owners have come to know and love – especially when experienced with the added traction that comes from the latest generation of ALL4 all- wheel drive. At the same time, this new architecture delivers excellent ride quality and enables the most spacious MINI interior ever.

“The new MINI Countryman is not only the largest MINI we’ve ever built, but it’s also the most technologically advanced and most versatile MINI of our product line up,” said Thomas Felbermair, Vice President MINI of the Americas. “The addition of the plug-in hybrid option is a major milestone for the brand and we look forward to bringing this exciting new vehicle into one of the top performing market segments.”

Fun to drive

The benefits from the BMW Group engine technology are evident across both the Cooper and Cooper S variants, with the new three-cylinder MINI TwinPower turbocharged engine on the MINI Cooper Countryman delivering 42 percent more torque than its predecessor, just shy of the outgoing Cooper S variant. The MINI Cooper Countryman can also hit 0 – 60 mph 1.6 seconds more quickly than did its predecessor, and for the first time, can be matched with ALL4 all-wheel drive. Meanwhile, with 207 ft-lbs on tap, the turbocharged four-cylinder engine on the MINI Cooper S Countryman nearly matches the torque output of the outgoing MINI John Cooper Works Countryman.

As the most adventurous MINI ever built, traction and performance in all kinds of conditions, wet or dry, rugged or smooth, straight or curvy, the new MINI Countryman benefits from the all-new ALL4 all-wheel drive system. The fully automatic system seamlessly delivers power to the wheels that grip and reacts to road conditions in as little as .25 seconds, with no action required by the driver or passenger.

Spacious interior

The biggest MINI ever means more space for cargo, people and anything else needed for your next big adventure. Not only does the all-new MINI Countryman offer cavernous cargo space – an increase of 30 percent compared to the outgoing generation – but with sliding, folding rear seats, a high roofline, and an adjustable trunk floor, it offers an incredibly flexible, versatile one too. The new MINI Countryman now has more front and rear legroom, front and rear headroom and rear seat shoulderroom than many of the major competitors in its class.

Pre-Outfitted with Premium Features

Although the new MINI Countryman continues the MINI tradition of offering an incredible array of possibilities for custom configuration, some customers may find that the car is already loaded before they’ve added any options. Every MINI Countryman will come standard with:

- an expansive Panorama Sunroof - Sensatec Leatherette Upholstery - Comfort Access keyless entry - MINI Connected infotainment system with 6.5-inch high-resolution display - Rear View Camera with guidelines - Rear Park Distance Control (parking sensors) - Bluetooth supporting Telephone, Audio Streaming, and Siri Eyes Free - Automatic Headlights and Rain-Sensing Windshield Wipers - Fore-and-Aft Sliding Rear Seats with Reclining and 40:20:40 Split-Folding Backrests - 17-inch light alloy wheels (Cooper) or 18-inch light alloy wheels (Cooper S)

Models with ALL4 all-wheel drive also come standard with heated seats. Cooper S models (with and without ALL4) come with standard LED headlights and daytime running lights, bolstered sport seats, and 18-inch light alloy wheels.

In addition to the standard features highlighted above, the new MINI Countryman features a number of options to improve the overall experience for the driver and passenger using a completely new generation of technology. A Technology Package includes a new 8.8-inch touchscreen navigation system, driven by MINI Connected 5.0, a redesigned and new-generation user interface and operating system, as well as Qi wireless device charging capability and MINI Find Mate Bluetooth tags.

The option to plug-in

The biggest, most adventurous MINI ever built will also be the most technologically advanced MINI when the brand launches its first ever plug-in hybrid model, the new MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4, in June 2017. Behind the scenes, a 3-cylinder gasoline engine works in tandem with a powerful electric motor to produce a combined peak output of 221 hp, with the e-rear axle enabling all-season ALL4 traction – but for drivers, Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 simply means high-tech Motoring fun.

It’s the perfect vehicle for city dwellers who wish to enjoy the benefits of purely electric mobility when commuting between home and work every day, for example, while at the same time benefiting from unlimited long-distance suitability on the weekend.

#FromWhereIMINI

Later this week, drone photographer Dirk Dallas (@dirka) will be taking the new MINI Countryman on a cross country adventure to its World Premiere in Los Angeles. Fellow MINI fans and adventurers can follow the action @MINIUSA as Dirk shares some of his favorite adventure spots across the country. Additionally, fans will have a chance at winning limited edition MINI Adventure Series patches by guessing Dirk’s #FromWhereIMINI location.

The new MINI Countryman will go on sale in March 2017 at MINI dealers across the U.S. with the MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 plug-in hybrid following in June 2017. Pricing for the U.S. market will be announced at a later date.