2013 MINI MINI-Roadster Overview
The 2013 MINI Roadster is the convertible version of the MINI Coupe, both of which debuted last year as two-seat, sportier alternatives to the MINI Hardtop and Convertible.
MINI reshuffled the way it names its cars for 2013, so to clarify, MINI Roadster now refers to the Cooper, Cooper S, and John Cooper Works versions of the two-seat, two-door convertible Roadster. For the 2013 model year, changes include now standard Bluetooth connectivity and satellite radio is now optional.
The Roadster very clearly takes after the Coupe stylistically, only with a power soft-top instead of the white helmet-like lid found on the Coupe. The windshield is raked back more severely than the one found on the Hardtop and instead of a squared off rear with a full hatchback, the Roadster’s roof also drops off once it passes the front seats, sloping down to a trunk lid which we still can’t get used to seeing on a MINI. Chrome roll bars behind the front seats will draw attention with the top down. The Roadster also features a gauge called an "Openometer" which tracks how much time you've driven with the top down.
Under the hood, each of the Roadster’s trim levels gets its own engine. The Cooper comes with the base engine, a 121-horsepower, 1.6-liter four-cylinder. The Cooper S and the high-performance John Cooper Works both feature turbocharged versions of this engine, 181-horsepower in the Cooper S versus 208-horsepower for the John Cooper Works version. Each model comes with a six-speed manual transmission standard, while a six-speed automatic is optional for the Cooper and Cooper S.
The 2013 MINI Roadster’s fuel economy ratings match those of the Convertible. Cooper models get 27 mpg in the city and 35 mpg on the highway with either transmission. Cooper S models, even with their added power, get the same fuel economy: 27/35 mpg with the manual transmission (26/34 with the automatic), while John Cooper Works models return 25/33 mpg.
Inside, the view from the two seats is dominated by the large, dinner-plate sized speedometer that is prominently mounted in the middle of the dash, a MINI staple. The Roadster’s shape and folding top means that there isn’t much cargo room, just 8.5 cubic feet. The interior is very customizable, with plenty of color options in cloth, simulated leather, or leather upholstery. Standard features include air conditioning, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel with audio and speed controls, push button start, Bluetooth connectivity, and a USB/iPod adapter. Also available are heated seats, navigation system, Recaro sport seats, and automatic air conditioning.
Standard safety features include antilock brakes, an electronic stability system, and side-impact airbags.