2020 Mini Cooper Countryman

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Review: Just Falls Short

While not quite venturing into the traditional crossover segment, Mini has attempted to make its traditional Cooper range more diverse over the years. Perhaps the most adventurous of these forays is the Mini Cooper Countryman, which borders on being a true subcompact SUV. However, Mini still plays to its strengths, focusing on fun over practicality. Yes, the cabin is comfortable and quite spacious, and the trunk is even usable, but more affordable rivals like the Mazda CX-3 offer a lot more for less. Still, Mini is about doing things in style, and you have to be willing to pay for panache. Oddly enough, the large Countryman still relies on the 134-horsepower turbo three-cylinder engine as its standard fare. Luckily, the stronger turbocharged four-pot, with 189 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque, is available. Unlike many of its rivals, though, the Mini Countryman can be had in either front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive guise.

New 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2019 Cooper Countryman?

While not overly extensive, there have been some noteworthy changes made to the Mini Cooper Countryman for 2020. Perhaps the most important, and disappointing, change is the deletion of the six-speed manual transmission in favor of a seven-speed automatic gearbox with a double-clutch. Similarly, the ALL4 models come standard with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Active Driving Assistant is now standard on every model, and the Cooper S gets LED head- and fog lights at standard. The Cooper S ALL4 also gets dual-zone automatic climate control and Comfort Access. A few new 18- and 19-inch wheel designs have been added to the catalog, too.

Pros and Cons

  • Iconic Mini style
  • Cheeky handling
  • Upscale, well-built cabin
  • Spacious rear seat
  • Available all-wheel drivetrain
  • Three-cylinder engine just doesn't cut it
  • Limited availability of safety specs
  • Cargo space is dwarfed by most competitors

Best Deals on Cooper Countryman

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Trims

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
Cooper
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-3 Gas
7-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$28,400
Oxford Edition
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-3 Gas
7-Speed Automatic
8-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
Other
$28,400
Cooper ALL4
1.5-liter Turbo Inline-3 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Other
$30,400
Cooper S
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
7-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
$31,900
Cooper S ALL4
2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Other
$33,900

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Exterior

No matter how big it may be, there is no mistaking the Countryman for anything but a Mini. The large, oval headlights and broad lower grille are classic Mini staples, and the available dual bonnet stripes only further exemplify the brand's heritage. Still, the subcompact SUV makes some notable changes to the classic design philosophy. It's longer, naturally, but the roof slopes a bit more than a boxy Mini Cooper Hardtop, giving the Countryman an almost couple-like appearance. It retains the traditional floating roof and signature wing mirrors, though. There are a number of ways to customize the Countryman, including a chrome line exterior trim or Union Jack mirror caps and side scuttles. The Cooper trims ride on 17-inch alloys while the Cooper S gets larger 18-inch wheels. There are available 19-inch variants in several styles, too.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Front Angle View Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Front Angle View 1 Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Rear Angle View Mini
See All 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Exterior Photos

Dimensions

The Countryman may be the biggest Mini out there, but it's still a Mini. The spacious cabin is courtesy of a 105.1-inch wheelbase, while the overall length of the car is only 169.8 inches. Not including the mirrors, the Countryman can squeeze into compact parking spots thanks to its width of 71.7 inches. It's also quite car-like, with a total height of 61.3 inches, giving a relatively decent view of the road for a Mini. The front-wheel-drive Cooper weighs in at 3,422 pounds while the Cooper S ALL4 maxes out at 3,719 lbs.

  • Length 169.8 in
  • Wheelbase 105.1 in
  • Height 61.3 in
  • Max Width 71.7 in
  • Front Width 61.5 in
  • Rear Width 61.6 in

Exterior Colors

A total of 11 paint colors are available to the Mini Cooper Countryman range. The standard color on the Classic sub-trim is Moonwalk Grey, while Midnight Black, Chili Red, and Light White are available for an extra $500. The Signature gets the same palette, minus the $500 surcharge, as well as Melting Silver, Island Blue, British Racing Green IV Metallic, and Chestnut. The Cooper S adds Thunder Grey at the Signature sub-trim level. The Iconic sub-trim gets exclusive access to Mini Yours Enigmatic Black Metallic. Both the Signature and Iconic sub-trims are available with body-color roofs and mirror caps, but they can be dressed in White, too, or Black on the Signature.

  • British Racing Green IV Metallic
  • Light White
  • Midnight Black Metallic
  • Chili Red
  • Island Blue Metallic
  • Melting Silver Metallic
  • Moonwalk Grey Metallic
  • Chestnut
  • MINI Yours Enigmatic Black Metallic
  • Thunder Gray Metallic

Cooper Countryman Performance

While it may still be a diminutive car, the Countryman is quite a bit larger than the more traditional Mini Cooper. And, with that extra size comes quite a bit of extra weight, too. Since the standard Countryman models come with the same turbocharged three-cylinder engine as the Cooper Hardtop, you can expect performance to take quite a hit. With only 134 hp and 162 lb-ft, the powertrain takes a lethargic 9.3 seconds to get the Countryman up to 60 mph from a standstill.

Luckily, there is a remedy for this unfortunate situation. The Cooper S models get the more potent turbo four-pot that develops 189 hp and 207 lb-ft. The extra oomph helps bring down the 0-60 mph sprint time to an acceptable 7.2 seconds or seven seconds on the ALL4 variant. Still, those who have been behind the wheel of smaller, zippier Mini Coopers will remain disappointed. The only option, then, is to take the step up to the JCW Countryman, which we review separately due to the large difference in performance. The Cooper Countryman is not given a towing capacity rating.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Front View Driving Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Rear View Driving Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Wheel Mini

Engine and Transmission

Once again, the Mini Cooper Countryman gets two engines to choose from. Both carry over unchanged from 2019, but the same cannot be said of the transmissions. The 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder powers the Cooper and Cooper ALL4, delivering 134 hp and 162 lb-ft to the front wheels on the former and all four wheels on the latter. The front-wheel-drive model gets a seven-speed automatic transmission while the all-wheel-drive gets an eight-speed automatic gearbox. While this powertrain can move the Countryman, it feels a bit underpowered on the larger Mini. It's a bit surprising that Mini didn't drop the engine altogether as it did with the slightly smaller Clubman.

The Cooper S models get a much more useful 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. With the same drivetrain and transmission pairings as the three-cylinder, this powertrain develops 189 hp and 207 lb-ft. The extra power definitely helps the SUV-like Mini get around town and makes passing on the highway much less of a chore. Sadly, the manual transmission has been dropped from the entire range for 2020, but the automatic replacements are certainly nothing to complain about. Shifts are smooth and precise, and they never struggle to find the correct gear for the situation.

  • Engines
    1.5-liter Turbo Inline-3 Gas, 2.0-liter Turbo Inline-4 Gas
  • Transmissions
    7-Speed Automatic, 8-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    FWD, Other

Handling and Driving Impressions

While not as spirited as its smaller Hardtop sibling, the Mini Cooper Countryman is far from boring to drive. True, it doesn't have that much punch, taking a fair amount of time to get up to speed, but once going, the Mini doesn't fail to impress.

The steering is well-weighed while still being precise and easy to handle. There is a fair amount of feed, which helps to draw the driver into the experience and give them enough confidence to play with the Countryman's limits. However, the heavier crossover leans a bit into overly enthusiastic turns. The ALL4 variants are even heavier and they lose some of the excitement that the front-wheel drivetrain provides.

Naturally, the brakes on a car designed to perform high-speed maneuvers are good. They are strong but still provide smooth, no-shudder deceleration. But most drivers are unlikely to push the Countryman as hard as they would its Hardtop sibling. The crossover also delivers a much more comfortable ride, especially when traveling at more reasonable speeds.

Cooper Countryman Gas Mileage

While Minis are not generally sensible cars in terms of cost-efficiency, the Countryman compares quite well with the subcompact SUV market. With the base three-cylinder engine and the front-wheel drivetrain, the Countryman gets an EPA-estimated 26/33/29 mpg across the city/highway/combined cycles, while the ALL4 model drops down to 24/33/27 mpg. The available four-cylinder engine is almost as efficient, with the front-wheel-drive version getting 24/33/28 mpg against the all-wheel-drive's 23/31/26 mpg. From the same parent company, the BMW X1 gets 24/33/27 mpg in its most efficient guise with a four-cylinder engine. The Countryman comes with a 16.1-gallon fuel tank, which means it can travel up to 466 miles between refills.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    16.1 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 26/33 mpg
* 2020 Mini Countryman Cooper FWD

Cooper Countryman Interior

The interior of the Countryman is as classic as any Mini, but the quality has certainly improved over the years. Plush leatherette or genuine leather support up to five occupants in the spacious cabin. Even the base model is quite easy to maneuver in, despite having only manually adjustable seats, but the upper sub-trims are even more accommodating with their power front seats. There aren't all that many features on the standard Classic sub-trim, and the infotainment is rotary knobs only. However, the upper trims get easy-to-navigate touchscreens with navigation and smartphone integration. Despite the lack of a manual gearbox, the front of the cabin still feels like a cockpit, thanks to the unique automatic drive-select shifter and the design elements.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Dashboard Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Infotainment System Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Steering Wheel Mini
See All 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Interior Photos

Seating and Interior Space

There is room enough for five within the spacious cabin of the Mini Cooper Countryman. The same is sometimes said of other Minis, but in this case, it's quite true. There is plenty of space in the front row, with enough head- and leg-room for most adults. There is a bit less room in the back, naturally, but there is still a fair amount of volume so that only particularly tall individuals would feel cramped. The standard Countryman gets bucket seats, while the S variants get sports seats. These seats are manually adjustable on the Classic trim, but eight-way power-adjustability is added from the Signature upwards, along with heating. Ingress and egress are seldom an issue thanks to the well-positioned seats. Similarly, visibility is quite good, and the extra height of the Countryman helps to counter some of the weaknesses of the traditional Mini design.

  • Seating capacity
    5-seater
  • Front Leg Room 40.4 in
  • Front Head Room 40.5 in
  • Rear Leg Room 37.6 in
  • Rear Head Room 37.5 in

Interior Colors and Materials

There's little to complain about when it comes to material choice inside the Mini Cooper Countryman. The build quality is top-notch, too. Leatherette is the standard upholstery in the Classic and Signature sub-trims, while the Iconic gets the genuine article. Carbon Black is the only option for the base leatherette upholstery, while Black Pearl is available with the Leatherette/Cloth combo unlocked through the Signature Upholstery Package. Within the same package is Carbon Black cross-punch leather, or Chesterfield leather in Satellite Grey or British Oak. Mini Yours lounge leather in Carbon Black costs an additional $500 over the package price. Every steering wheel comes wrapped in leather, but the style can be changed to JCW or Mini Yours through the available packages. Similarly, the interior trim is Hazy Grey with available Piano Black, or Mini Yours Piano Black or Stone Hill Grey with matching illumination.

Cooper Countryman Trunk and Cargo Space

Minis are not traditionally practical vehicles, but the Countryman is one of the most practical of the 4-door selection. Compared to other compact SUVs, the 17.6 cubic feet of trunk space doesn't really impress, but it's enough for most daily errands. You probably won't be using your Mini for family vacations, though. If you need more space for cargo and only have one other passenger, you can fold down the rear seats in a 40/20/40-split to free up a total of 47.6 cubic feet of space. This is enough room for a few suitcases, so you and your beau can enjoy the drive to your weekend getaway. Similar small SUVs like the BMW X1 supply a far more impressive 27.1 cubic feet of standard space.

There is a modest amount of small-item storage around the cabin, with spacious door pockets and a standard glove compartment. There are also a pair of cupholders up front, but none for those in the back since there is no fold-down armrest. The front center console armrest does supply a storage cubby, but it's pretty narrow.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Trunk Space with Seat Folded Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Trunk Space Mini
2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Trunk Space 1 Mini

Cooper Countryman Infotainment and Features

Features

The Countryman isn't exactly poorly equipped coming out the gates, but the majority of its desirable features are sneakily hidden within the available sub-trim options and packages. The base model comes with leatherette upholstery, manual air conditioning, manual front seats, cruise control, a rearview camera, rear parking sensors, and forward collision avoidance. A panoramic moonroof surprisingly comes standard on every model, too. Moving up the sub-trims, the Mini can be equipped with dual-zone climate control, Comfort Access, eight-way heated power front seats, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, adaptive cruise control, and a power liftgate. Within the packages, you can also find front parking sensors, a parking assistant, and a head-up display.

Infotainment

The standard infotainment suite is quite bare-bones, featuring a 6.5-inch display, rotary controls, AM/FM Radio, Bluetooth calling and audio streaming, and a six-speaker sound system. There is an auxiliary input jack and a pair of USB ports, too. However, a number of upgrades are available. The Signature sub-trim upgrades the 6.5-inch display with a touchscreen, while the Cooper S further gets a 12-speaker Harman Kardon sound system. The Iconic gives the Cooper the same sound system, while both models get a larger 8.8-inch touchscreen, SiriusXM, navigation, voice commands, and Apple CarPlay. However, Android Auto isn't offered at all. A wireless charging device supplements the USB ports on the Iconic sub-trim.

Mini Cooper Countryman Common Problems and Reliability

J.D. Power has yet to award the Mini Country a dependability rating for 2020, but we expect the 2019 score of 89 out of 100 to carry over. Despite this high rating, the Countryman is not without its problems. In the USA, it was recalled in 2019 due to a missing crash protection plate near the fuel pump, and in 2018 for a problem with the firmware on the crankshaft sensor. New purchases are covered by a 50,000-mile/48-month limited and powertrain warranty. There is also 36,000 miles/36 months of complimentary maintenance.

Warranty

  • Basic:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    4 Years \ 50,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    12 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    4 Years \ Unlimited Miles
  • Maintenance:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles

Cooper Countryman Safety

Unfortunately, the NHTSA has not commissioned a crashworthiness review of the latest Mini Cooper Countryman in the US. A review of the Mini Countryman has, however, been conducted by the IIHS who gave the car a top rating of Good in each evaluation.

Key Safety Features

The Mini Cooper Countryman is not the most safety-conscious subcompact on the road, but it gets the essentials, such as ABS, stability and traction control, and seven airbags: dual front, driver knee, front side, and side curtain. The Active Driving Assistant suite comes standard, too, comprising a rearview mirror, rear parking sensors, and forward collision avoidance. Via the available packages, front parking sensors, adaptive headlights, and a parking assistant can be added.

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman a good car?

In terms of sheer practicality, the Countryman falls short of almost all of its rivals in most areas. It's quite spacious inside, but not overly so, and while its trunk is certainly more usable than the shoebox in a Mini Cooper Hardtop, it's dwarfed by the cavernous holds found in many other subcompact SUVs. However, what makes the Countryman so appealing is that it remains moderately utilitarian while still providing a surprising amount of fun.

Once you discard the starter engine and focus on the available turbocharged four-cylinder, you'll start to see what the Mini has to offer. It may not deliver break-neck acceleration, but it's still relatively quick, and it doesn't shy away from corners or spirited driving. The stiffer suspension and multiple driving modes on the Cooper S are definitely a must in this regard.

However, once you get over the initial burst of adrenaline, the Countryman's shortcomings start to show a bit more vividly. The standard list of features is pretty scanty, and if you want even a modicum of what more practical rivals offer, you have to be willing to pay through the nose. The distinct lack of many advanced driver-assistance features is particularly disappointing in a segment aimed towards young families.

After all is said and done, the Mini Countryman simply doesn't stack up well against the competition in the areas that really matter to buyers in this market. If you can afford to spend the money on one, you may as well get a more affordable, practical subcompact for daily driving and a Mini Cooper Hardtop for a bit of fun on the side.

🚘What's the Price of the 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman?

At its cost, the Mini Cooper Countryman is a little more expensive than your average compact SUV, but it's not entirely unaffordable, with a starting MSRP of $28,400 for the base model. Adding the all-wheel drivetrain increases this to $30,400. The zippier Cooper S is for sale at $31,900, with the ALL4 all-wheel drivetrain adding $2,000 again. At its top sub-trim, the Cooper S will cost you at least $39,900. Every Mini Cooper Country price here excludes tax, registration, licensing, and Mini's $850 handling fee.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Models

Four trim levels comprise the Mini Cooper Countryman for 2020: the Cooper, Cooper ALL4, Cooper S, and Cooper S ALL4. The Cooper models are powered by a 1.5-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine developing 134 hp and 162 lb-ft, while the Cooper S gets a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that develops 189 hp and 207 lb-ft. Each engine can be paired with a front-wheel or all-wheel drivetrain. The former sees the engine mated to a seven-speed automatic gearbox, while the latter uses an eight-speed automatic transmission.

Standard features on the Cooper and Cooper ALL4 comprise 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic halogen headlights, and a panoramic moonroof. The interior comes upholstered in leatherette with manual front seats, manual climate control, and Active Driving Assistant (a rearview camera, forward collision avoidance, and rear parking sensors). The infotainment features rotary controls, AM/FM/CD playback, and a six-speaker sound system.

Aside from the stronger engine, the Cooper S models also get 18-inch alloy wheels, and LED headlights and fog lights. Dual-zone climate control replaces the standard air conditioning and Comfort Access is added. The sportier model also gets Mini driving modes, performance control, a JCW steering wheel, and heated front sports seats.

Various sub-trims are offered within each trim, with the Signature package adding dual-zone climate control, Comfort Access, heated front seats, and a 6.5-inch touchscreen interface. The Iconic sub-trim gets the largest 19-inch alloy wheels, eight-way power front seats with memory, an 8.8-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, navigation, SiriusXM, a 12-speaker Harman Kardon sound system, and a wireless charging pad. Some of these features, such as the Harman Kardon sound system, are made available at earlier sub-trims on the Cooper S.

See All 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Trims and Specs

Additional Packages

Each model of the Countryman is customizable in some form or another. The Signature Package adds $3,000 to the bill in exchange for extra color options, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, Comfort Access, and a 6.5-inch touchscreen. Similarly, the Iconic Package ($8,500) adds further color options, 19-inch wheels, LED fog lights and headlights, eight-way power front seats with memory, an 8.8-inch touchscreen with navigation, SiriusXM, Apple CarPlay, and a wireless charging device, along with unique Mini Yours styling options. The Premium Package ($2,000 - $3,000) is available on models already equipped with the Signature Package and adds power-folding exterior mirrors, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, eight-way power front seats with memory, SiriusXM, and a 12-speaker Harman Kardon sound system. The Driver Assistance Package ($850 - $1,250) can be added to the Signature or Iconic sub-trims, and comprises front parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, a parking assistant, and a head-up display.

🚗What Mini Cooper Countryman Model Should I Buy?

If you have your heart set on a new Mini Cooper Countryman, despite the plethora of affordable and capable subcompact crossovers on the market, then we'd suggest looking at the Cooper S model. The standard Cooper's three-cylinder engine simply isn't strong enough for the larger Mini. The sportier Cooper S also provides a firmer suspension, which improves handling. You can probably pass on the ALL4 drivetrain, though, unless the roads where you live really warrant it. Beyond the model, you also need to think about which sub-trim best suits your needs. The mid-tier Signature is definitely attractive with its keyless entry, heated front seats, and automatic climate control, but if you want smartphone integration and navigation, you'll either have to step up to the Iconic or tack on the Touchscreen Navigation Package.

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Comparisons

Mini Cooper Clubman Mini
BMW X1 BMW
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Mini Cooper Countryman134 hp26/33 mpg$28,400
Mini Cooper Clubman 189 hp26/34 mpg$30,900
BMW X1 228 hp24/33 mpg$35,400

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman vs Mini Cooper Clubman

There isn't all that much difference between the Countryman and the Clubman, although the latter is a little smaller. This also means that it can do a little more with the power delivered by its identical turbocharged four-cylinder engine - it forgoes the three-cylinder completely. However, by still trying to be practical, the Clubman makes some questionable design choices that don't quite cut it. While the trunk is quite spacious, even more so than the Countryman's, the rear seats aren't as comfortable. In terms of quality and feature availability, the two Minis are basically identical, and they even have very similar price tags. With all that in mind, it seems wiser to go for the more practical and better-looking car that is the Mini Cooper Countryman.

See Mini Cooper Clubman Review

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman vs BMW X1

While both subcompacts may hail from the same parent company, they each have very different heritages and design philosophies. The X1 may be a bit bigger and heavier, but it has a far more powerful engine to work with - a 228-hp turbocharged four-cylinder. This gives the BMW far better acceleration, almost making the six-second mark with its all-wheel drivetrain. With handling that can rival the Countryman and equally high-quality materials, the X1 is just as fun to be in. On top of that, it's far more practical, with a spacious rear seat and 27.1 cubic feet of standard trunk space. It doesn't get much more in the way of safety features, though, with only lane departure warning and pedestrian detection added over the Countryman's standard features. It may be quite a bit pricier than the Mini, but the BMW X1 comes with more than enough to justify the purchase, and it serves the purpose of a subcompact crossover far better.

See BMW X1 Review

Mini Cooper Countryman Popular Comparisons

2020 Mini Cooper Countryman Video Review

Check out some informative Mini Cooper Countryman video reviews below.

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