herald

Friday 20 October 2017

From city slicker to country gent... two or four doors, Sir?

IT’S been hailed as the ultimate four door car for the image-conscious urban family and the newly launched MINI Countryman doesn’t disappoint.

With its long-travel suspension, smooth handling and slick six-speed manual gearbox BMW’s muchhyped crossover offers a supple ride from city to country and back again.

The fourth member of the MINI family, the Countryman joins the Hatch, Convertible and Clubman on our roads, offering more space, more practicality and more versatility than its sisters.

Available in 11 exterior colours and 8 interior trims the Countryman’s boot space of 350 litres, is more than double that of the Hatch and 90 litres more than the Clubman.

Externally the first thing you notice is that the front of the Countryman is more upright, with the aim of offering improved driver and pedestrian safety.

Be prepared for passersby to notice it too! A real head-turner, the Countryman is significantly longer than the hatchback - 374mm to be precise.

It’s also taller and wider, but maintains many of the sporty attributes synonymous with the hatchback. Internally the Countryman’s four passenger doors allow for a surprisingly large amount of leg room front and rear, with all Irish models built as five seat cars.

Customers can however specify the four seat option at no extra cost. A higher seating position offers better visibility for the driver and passengers, while heated door mirrors, rear park distance control, tyre puncture warning system, USB and Bluetooth functions and much more leave you with a car that all but drives itself.

With a starting price of €23,080 for the MINI One, the Countryman is already sold out for the rest of the year.

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