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MINI debuts 5th generation 3-door MINI Cooper and MINI Cooper S with gas engines

Gas-powered Mini Coopers live on

2025 Mini Cooper S left front three-quarter view studio shot with shadows.When Mini launched the 2025 Mini Countryman Electric battery-electric vehicle (BEV) via the Sphere in Las Vegas last year, the easy reaction could have been, “Well, that’s it for Mini and ICEs.” But Mini just proved that response wrong. BMW Group’s Mini brand recently announced the fifth generation Mini Cooper and Mini Cooper S gas-powered fun-mobiles for the global market.

2025 Mini Cooper S bonnet logo.
Mini / Mini

Why gas-powered Mini Coopers matter

The Mini Cooper’s appeal to auto enthusiasts has endured since the original models debuted in 1961. Small, cute, economical, easy to park, and fun to drive, the Mini Cooper has become larger and more potent in the last 63 years. Mini EV models have captured the most recent headlines, but the revered auto brand will not abandon its heritage.

The new generation Mini Cooper C and Mini Cooper S 3-door gas-powered cars combine the Mini’s classic, minimalist design features, updated digital assistance and convenience features, and the Mini’s go-cart-like driving experience.

Size is in Mini’s favor because its relatively diminutive proportions likely shield it from the scorn and criticism for environmental impact, at least relative to vehicles like Dodge Challenger Hellcats, Chevy Suburbans, and Super Duty Ford F-Series pickups.

2025 Mini Cooper S left side direct studio shot with shadows.
Mini / Mini

2025 Mini Cooper S arrives first

Automakers typically ship higher-line models before starter or basic versions of new vehicles for the more considerable buzz and greater revenue from pricier variants. Mini will build and ship the higher-performance Mini Cooper S to the U.S. before the Mini Cooper C for those same reasons, but possibly also because the S is the model most buyers will want, especially since the base price is only $3,350 more than the Mini Cooper C.

The Mini Cooper S engine, rated at 201 hp and 221 ft-lb of torque, can accelerate from zero-to-60 mph in 6.3 seconds, Mini says. That time may not be impressive when EVs with sub-4-second times zero-to-60 times are common, but it wasn’t too long ago that 6 seconds to 60 mph was a performance threshold. Also, the Mini Cooper’s fun factor has never hinged on blazing acceleration or maximum speeds but more on its ability to zip around town or countryside without much noise and fuss. Mini has not released the engine specifications for the lower-powered Mini Cooper C.

2025 Mini Cooper S red grille 'S' badge.
Mini / Mini

Tech features complement the Mini Cooper style

Twelve ultrasonic sensors feed data to the 2025 Mini Cooper’s automatic driver assistance systems (ADAS), including a standard Safe Exit feature that won’t unlock doors for exiting if the monitors detect an oncoming vehicle that could collide with an open door or departing passenger.

The dashboard center features a 9.4-inch diameter high-resolution OLED touchscreen. The display operates in a similar manner as a smartphone. Vehicle data information, optional navigation maps, and settings menus populate the display, along with responses from Spike, the Mini Intelligent Personal Assistant (IPA). The driver can say “Hey Mini” to enlist Spike’s assistance to control temperature, navigation, entertainment, and more.

Both new 2025 Mini Cooper 3-door models for the U.S. will have 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engines. The higher-performance Mini Cooper S, starting at $32,200, begins production in March 2024. Production begins in July for the standard Mini Cooper C, starting at $28,950. Both models will also have a $995 destination and handling fee.

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Bruce Brown
Digital Trends Contributing Editor Bruce Brown is a member of the Smart Homes and Cars teams. He also writes technology news…
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