I've currently got a Cooper that I've had from new but I'm going to have a look at a Cooper S tomorrow with the view to replacing my current MINI.
Now, I haven't done this buying a second hand car thing for a while now so what should I look for to make sure I don't get a bad car? The car I'm looking at is on a 54 plate and done 24,700 miles. It also has the TLC pack but I'm not sure it's had it's first service yet - isn't that due on 25,000 miles? I've got these on the list so far:
• rims of the wheels to check for curbing
• tyre tread (runflats are really expensive to replace)
• bodywork including stone chips on bonnet
• Under the bonnet - now I've done this before but I have no idea what I should be looking at to be honest!
• Test-drive - yes, obviously take it for a test-drive and make sure it runs and sounds okay.
Umm, I thought my list was gonna be longer but that's all I can think of... pathetic!
Yeah I had to do this on my current Cooper... luckily it fell under warranty! I think I'm aware of all the places to listen for noises, creaks and rattles... I think I am as I had plenty on my current Cooper!
Check the steering and suspension,drive it hard and leave it running and look at the engine ( as though you know what your looking for,it usually helps to take a couple of sharp intakes of breath every now and then )..listen to it..... is it running smoothly,are there any rattles etc etc.Turn the steering to full lock and listen to the noise it makes on the PAS.....more intakes of breath.
Turn it off.look underneath for water ,oil leakage ,......more intakes of breath.......check the body work at an acute angle for dings and dents,try to see it in full light and check for swirl marks on the paint work......more intake..( youve got the idea by now )
Are there any stone chips to wind screen and so on....
PS only do the breathing thing if the seller can hear you otherwise it has no effect
Regardless of what the book says, the service intervals on a MINI are:
10,000 miles/2 year - 1st Oil Service
Approx 2 years - 1st brake Fluid Change
25,000 miles/2 years later - 1st Inspection I
Approx 4 years - 2nd Brake Fluid Change
40,000 miles/ 2 years later - 2nd Oil Service
All except the 2nd Brake Fluid Change are covered by TLC.
I bought mine with 21,000 miles in July. Its had an
engine mount within a week
gearbox and clutch as a linkage was broken, BMW will only put in new gearboxes even if its one component broken.
now with 25,500miles all fixed under TLC
Try and buy a car which the dealer knows.
Stone chips can mean the car has been raked, but questionable.
Listen for knocking sounds when taking off and cornering, suspension or CV joint gone.
Vibration through the steering wheel could be an engine mount, buckled alloy
Car pulls to one side, wheel alignment or suspension damage.
Sorry to hijack the post, however i thought it silly to start a new topic:
Ok, Im 19 years old and drive an 02 MINI One. Ive been looking to buy a cooper S for a few months now, and have finally got my loan! I plan to sell my ONE and am hoping to get about £6000 for it. I only have another £2000 to spend on top of the trade value of my current car. This means i have £8000 to spend on an S!
Have done a bit of searching on autotrader, and most start from £7500 upwards. My question is if i buy an older MINI, am i still going to get a good car? What im trying to say is, has anyone bought an S in this kind of price bracket, and what where their experiences?
Receipts to back up the mileage at the service intervals
Check the oil cover and expansion tank (water bottle) for sludge/creamy residue..
Interior wear (footwell/steering wheel/handbrake/gear knob)..
If its been looked after then with some luck you be ok. Mileage doesn't really matter these days.. if the owner is genuine and loves the car and you get that good gut feeling then go for it...
You get some good ones.. and some frustrating ones.. swings and roundabouts..
2 things you should check, take a rag with you to check the oil level and also pop off the Header tank cap to check the Coolant level, reason i say this is the owners of Mini's in genral ( not most on here) tend to be the types that do low milages and just get the lowly mechanic to check there fluids when its in for service. Seeing that this can only once every two years due to low milages, these things get neglected. So this is a good sign of how well the owner looks after it.
Also check the boot carpets and even the passneger carpets for sign of dampness, oh and don't be afraid to turn weverything on abd off, all the switches, even the horn.
As for getting an older car, well i am pleased with my 02 shape mini had it over a year now, during tha time added the bits from the facelift model i like, including 3-spoke wheel and facelift xenons. But once you have a private plate on, nbody would ever know what age it was. Mine looks as good as an 06 model. Still stand by my statement of the best car i have ever owned. And for the first time in my life i have no desire to change it, whioch for me means it must be good as i used to change every 6 months or so. Do it best decision you could make
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