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Old Jan 14th, 2014, 12:02 AM
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United-States Deeply wanting to be a MINI owner

Hello everyone,

I am brand new to this forum and hoping to be a MINI owner in the near future. I apologize I broke the rules by not being a current owner of a MINI but thats why i joined this forum.

While I am here I would like some input on a possible up-and-coming purchase of a MINI.

I have found a 2003 R50 (Green) 5-speed with 136K mileage. I have test driven it twice and it seems to run great. Shifts like a butter, and handles like a dream. I have looked the car over rather thoroughly and I really like it and its mine for a really good price.

My only hesitation is that its a 2003 with such high mileage. I have read/heard that if I were to get a first-gen Cooper to go with 2004 or later due to a lot of the refinements they made over the first couple years.

Can any one point out some differences between the 2003 and 2004 (or later) R50 that I should be aware of that might deter me from picking up the 2003.

Any advice is welcome.

Thanks guys.
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Old Jan 14th, 2014, 03:26 PM
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R50 models built prior to July 2004 had the problematic Midlands transmission. Later models had the more robust Getrag unit. Models built February 10, 2005 onward had an upgraded power steering pump.

Facelift (2005 and 2006 models) also had redesigned lights and bumpers and some interior tweaks as depicted here.
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