Well, I have had my SD All4 manual for 12 months now and thought I would post my findings with the car.
Overall - A good car with excellent equipment that is easy to use apart from some of the switchgear. A good size for me. lare enough to cope with garden furniture, holidays and trips to the tip (sorry, recycling centre)!
Good- Comfortable seats and driving position with plenty of adjustment. The sat nav, radio, phone and iPod interfaces are easy to use on a daily basis, and with the HK speakers the sound system is very good. I have the load flat floor and the space under the floor is very useful and keeps clutter out of the load area.
OK - The ride could be better over bumps and country lanes (run flat tyres don't help this), handling is good for the type of vehicle. Fuel consumption. I know this is much discussed but while it is not all I might have hoped for I can manage between 46 - 53 mpg depending on my driving style and type of journey so all in all I feel this is ok. Hand break, I am not too sure on this. The handle is fine to use, just gets in the way sometimes. Window switches would be better in the doors but not a real problem.
Not Good - No water temp gage so no idea when the engine has warmed up from a cold start. I have auto headlights but during daytime use it is difficult to tell if they have come on or not as there is no waning light. I find I have to look at the central speedo pointer to try and see if this has illuminated.
The storage space around the cabin is not much use and the cup holders, if used, block access to the lower line of switches. Also, the glove box is too small, as are the sun visors.
The centre rail system is a good idea but rendered useless if, as in my case, you have opted for a five seat configuration together with the media pack as the rail is then reduced in length to almost nothing.
So in summary, a good car which meets my needs and is comfortable, affordable to run and with good performance but a few poor design elements which should not have made it through to production. As as result I would have to mark the car down for this and give it 75 out of 100.
That's a pretty fair assessment, and I think I agree with all the points made. The switchgear is very odd ergonomically. I think the window switches are being moved to the doors shortly on new builds.
Ours is almost a year old now, but is a four seat. As we have a nipper on the way now, it will be interesting to see how it copes with all the added bits & bobs that parents have to carry. The boot is just big enough for a pushchair/carrycot - or whatever the damned things are called - frame when folded, and like you we have the load flat floor giving the little cubby underneath. Not that we'll be able to get at it with the boot full!!
I still have no idea what the 'Sport' button does!! And I much prefer the BMW iDrive system controller to the Mini version.
Current: 2011 X6 40d & 2012 Countryman SD All4
Project: 2005 E46 330Cd M Sport convertible
They've got away with this serious omission since 2006/7 and I've now idea how!
Mind you, if you've ever driven a car with an oil temperature gauge, you'd be amazed how far the oil temperature lags the water temperature by; compared to the coolant, it takes around 3 times as long for the oil to come up to temperature.
May '04 - Feb '07 R50, Feb '07 - May '10 R53. Enjoyed our time with MINI's, but ran out of space! Now Focus RS, Triumph Tiger 1200 & Land Rover powered...
I have a Mercedes C-Class with no water temp gauge......only if coolant level drops or temp climbs outside normal range the dash display tells you to stop driving and return the car to workshop. I believe the manufacturers think most drivers no longer understand what a proper temp gauge is for.......all part of the general 'dumbing down' of anything practical or technical I guess.
Robbie - Nice review. It would have been nice to see the specs and mileage on your car. Can I assume you have sport suspension with 18" tires regarding the OK ride?
It's funny I never noticed no temp guage before. Very strange indeed!
X6 - Yes, the window switches are suppose to make it over on the doors starting with the 2013 Paceman. I never did get confirmation about the 2013 Countryman but many assume yes.
I just had a 2012 Countryman Cooper S for an extended testdrive plus a used 2008 Clubman Cooper S. Both were 6-spd manuals and I test-drove one after the other.
The sport button really stiffened the steering wheel on the Countryman. Click it on at about 120 km/hr and you'll notice the steering much stiffer and confident. I actually enjoyed it. I could see it making a huge difference the faster you are going. I tried the same thing with the 2008 Clubman S and I really didnt notice much or not to the same degree as the Countryman. Or at least I couldnt feel the difference. Maybe after 5 years of use the mechanism was starting to show some wear and tear.
Nevertheless, I now would check the box for the (canadian) sport package which for $990 gives you the 18" wheels, tires, and sport button.
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