Would be owner needs advice - MINI Cooper Forum

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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2018, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
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Would be owner needs advice

My list of wants are going to be different to what I can have but here goes...

I have had LOTS of cars over the last 40 years but never had a mini ( shame you may cry ! )

Anyway I am looking for a sporty cooper just to use for maybe 3 to 5k miles a year mainly local roads with occasional trips to clients. I a fifty plus so no need to worry about insurance/fuel etc and I am not worried if its done lots of miles BUT I have less than £1500 to spend and I keep hearing horror stories about costs of repairs for the older models , i.e. older than 05 plate

..so any advice on which model would fit these criteria and what to look out for or worry about !

cheers

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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2018, 08:50 PM
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The gen 1 is your best bet r50-53 2001-2006
its significantly more reliable than the gen 2 r56 2006-2013.


With a budget of £1500 you will struggle IMO to find a decent low mileage Cooper S so a standard Cooper is a better bet.

Regarding reliability the Gen1 is very strong, however.

2001-2004 One's and Coopers had the Midlands gearbox which is an achilles heel if its ragged or not serviced regularly.
Diff bearings fail, input and output shaft bearing also crumble.

In july 2004 they added the much more reliable 5spd gertag gearbox which is significantly more reliable.

For this reason i recommend you look for a Late 2004-2006 Cooper.

not only did they change the gearbox they also gave the car a minor facelift which is a bonus .


#1 almost all Minis leak usually from the crankshaft position sensor O-ring which is a 30min job with the right tools

#2 they can also leak from Rear and front main seals aswell as the valve cover gaskets.

#3 when inspecting a Mini pull off the door and boot seals and inspect for rust, water tends to hang around the seals and cause corrosion.

#4 Rust isn't a bug bear but have a general root around underneath, consentrating on the subframes.

#5 If it has the brilliant Pano glass roof lift up the mats and make sure the Carpets are dry, the drain age tubes can get clogged with debris causing the rainwater to drain into the cabin.

#6 The BCM "body control module" is located near the floor and its very sensitive to water if it gets water damaged its quite a large bill for replacement.

#7 When you start the car listen out for a Tapping, timing chain tensioners tend to stick after 100k its not a deal breaker but just be aware.
its a very easy job if caught early enough, However i would avoid a car with a knocking engine.

#8 check the Strut tops in the engine bay for "mushrooming" its a common fault, easily dealt with under tower defender plates.

#9 check all the fluids.

Below is a video by Modmini the MINI GOD! anything that needs doing on amini he has done!!


https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rc...Ob8hEn3aCOlJ9j


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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2018, 09:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks

so like this one on auto trader MINI Hatch 1.6 Cooper 3dr, 06 plate , 12mnths mot, 113k miles, private seller , FSH, £1500

What mileage is TOO high would you say ?
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 13th, 2018, 09:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by minione2002 View Post
2001-2004 One's and Coopers had the Midlands gearbox which is an achilles heel if its ragged or not serviced regularly.
You forgot to mention avoiding any 1st Gen Cooper or One with an automatic transmission as it will be a CVT
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 14th, 2018, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smallzoo2 View Post
Thanks

so like this one on auto trader MINI Hatch 1.6 Cooper 3dr, 06 plate , 12mnths mot, 113k miles, private seller , FSH, £1500

What mileage is TOO high would you say ?

Minis can munch up the miles without too much issue as long as they are maintained.

My 02 One is at 113k and it still goes really well without any issue.


Just make sure you give her a full service.

Gearbox oil MTF LT3 for the later gearbox

Engine oil 5w30 or 5w40 meeting BMW LL04 OR LL01

Longlife 98 can also be used but oils with this approval are scarce.

Coolant can be Green or Blue

Power steering fluid Pentosin CH11s only!!!

etc etc.


Go 'ave a gander and get back to us

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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 16th, 2018, 07:07 PM
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I picked up a Cooper ‘52 plate for £700 and 64k Miles, almost immaculate bodywork
Needed a wheel bearing and gearbox rebuild which was done for £700. There are bargains out there ..


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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 17th, 2018, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chalky13 View Post
I picked up a Cooper ‘52 plate for £700 and 64k Miles, almost immaculate bodywork
Needed a wheel bearing and gearbox rebuild which was done for £700. There are bargains out there ..


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my mate picked up a 03 cooper s with 69k got the right wheels checkmate decals on it with no keys the other day £400 at auction went straight through mot got new key form bmw £140 really tidy car leather and sat nav spec,, he got me to drop the numbers in on his new key for a favour and a drink. really tidy clean car after a good clean and mot,, best way to buy a car with a big common problem repair the problem and buy at broken money,, that said got another mate bought a fiat twin air turbo thing and its been a money pit and still not very good,,

Albert Einstein: The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old Feb 26th, 2018, 05:14 PM
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Silk Green HWS' 2002 MINI Cooper Now Has 641,000 Miles

That's me - and if you have the time - check the MINI2.com General Discussion Thread titled,
"Who's Driven The Most Miles?"

My posts are all signed HWS, - but, somehow that thread has attracted many kind responses from owners
in UK, Scotland Ireland, Austria, Australia, Germany, etc.. Lots of history from real (most very happy) owners.

It's been very interesting to me - I hope it will be for you also.

Good luck on your search. (And don't let your youth slow you down - I'm 92)

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 25th, 2018, 10:51 PM Thread Starter
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5 or 6 gears ?.. quite a few people (outside of this forum ) have said there is a real problem with the 5 gear versions...it starts to rattle and then expensive to fix


Cheers
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 26th, 2018, 12:04 AM
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See post #2 above again.
The 5-speed Getrag in the R50 MINIs built after July 2004 is not quite as robust as the 6-speed in the R53, but is pretty reliable and I
wouldn’t hesitate to choose a late 7/2004 - 2006 manual R50 or any manual R53.
If you like automatic transmissions, the ones in R53 models are actually pretty good, but don’t get a pre- 7/2004 manual R50 and DO NOT
get an automatic R50 from any year.

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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 26th, 2018, 04:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cristo View Post
See post #2 above again.

The 5-speed Getrag in the R50 MINIs built after July 2004 is not quite as robust as the 6-speed in the R53, but is pretty reliable and I

wouldn’t hesitate to choose a late 7/2004 - 2006 manual R50 or any manual R53.

If you like automatic transmissions, the ones in R53 models are actually pretty good, but don’t get a pre- 7/2004 manual R50 and DO NOT

get an automatic R50 from any year.


I’ve got a pre 7/2004 manual R50 5 speed.

I bought it last year, it needed the gearbox rebuild. It seems almost all of them for sale (cheap) do need it


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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 26th, 2018, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
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Gearbox

Thanks for that

so this one

MINI Hatch 1.6 Cooper Park Lane, 2005 (55 reg), 80,000 miles, FSH, MOT April 2019

should be ok ?

Its up for £2400 at a garage so dont know whether that is expensive or not ?

I know the 'Park Lane' adds leather seats but I presume its not a Cooper S just a standard cooper ?

we are going to look at it tomorrow..I just hope I dont get burned as £2500 is our absolute maximum and that is presuming no major bills happen in the first year ..otherwise we are in real trouble..

cheers
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 27th, 2018, 07:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smallzoo2 View Post
Thanks for that

so this one

MINI Hatch 1.6 Cooper Park Lane, 2005 (55 reg), 80,000 miles, FSH, MOT April 2019

should be ok ?

Its up for £2400 at a garage so dont know whether that is expensive or not ?

I know the 'Park Lane' adds leather seats but I presume its not a Cooper S just a standard cooper ?

we are going to look at it tomorrow..I just hope I dont get burned as £2500 is our absolute maximum and that is presuming no major bills happen in the first year ..otherwise we are in real trouble..

cheers
at lest buying off a dealer you should have a comeback on it up to 6 months later on some issues. just ask loads of questions i always say take a little Dictaphone with you just in case the dealer at later date decides to say no he/she never said that to you... because e is it does go faulty the tend to try that one, as you have a lot of consumer rights when buying from car retailer

Albert Einstein: The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 27th, 2018, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
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well we bought it. It was from a trader who sells cars that are p/ex to our local renault garage. we had a long drive, no noises, gearbox was fine, clutch was fine, bodywork in excellent condition, underneath looked excellent as well. Interior basically unmarked leather. No lights on dashboard etc..Extensive history, last serviced and MOT'd at 78k miles..its done 81k

anyway he knocked £100 off so we too the plunge as my wife liked it.

Ok..things could go wrong but I guess that can happen with any car and you have to take that on the chin..

Hopefully all I will do is say what fun I am having on this forum and not whats gone wrong

thanks for everyones help

P.S. Anyone you can recommend in Cheshire who is the bees knees with minis if I need it working on or looking over ?
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old Aug 28th, 2018, 07:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smallzoo2 View Post
well we bought it. It was from a trader who sells cars that are p/ex to our local renault garage. we had a long drive, no noises, gearbox was fine, clutch was fine, bodywork in excellent condition, underneath looked excellent as well. Interior basically unmarked leather. No lights on dashboard etc..Extensive history, last serviced and MOT'd at 78k miles..its done 81k

anyway he knocked £100 off so we too the plunge as my wife liked it.

Ok..things could go wrong but I guess that can happen with any car and you have to take that on the chin..

Hopefully all I will do is say what fun I am having on this forum and not whats gone wrong

thanks for everyones help

P.S. Anyone you can recommend in Cheshire who is the bees knees with minis if I need it working on or looking over ?
ideal you bought from a dealer safer way EU consumer laws state any dealer must include a form or come back if any faults appear ie they must get first chance to repair it a EU judge ruled 2 years ago that a customer cannot sign away any such rights,, long and short of it is, up to 6 months if car falls faulty you could ask for repair if repair does not fix it could ask for a refund this was set by a judge in a lot of court cases now,, ie a dealer knows if goes to court they do not have a leg to stand on,, just thought would give you this info before hand,,
word of warning if it does go fault you must not try to repair it you must take it back to where bought it from,, if at point you feel they have had plenty chances to repair it then from the point of a rejection letter from you to them you must not drive it,
even better thing would be if could get servicing done for 6 moths from where you bought the car that really seals it,

Albert Einstein: The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
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