MINI has introduced a five-door version of its standard hatchback model for the first time. There’s more to it than just squeezing in an extra pair of doors, though, with the new model boasting a longer wheelbase, more headroom and a bigger boot.
The UKL1 platform that the new MINI is based on can be easily stretched, and MINI has decided to increase the five-door’s wheelbase by 72mm. All of that goes in to increasing legroom, with buyers also getting a 15mm boost in headroom. There are three seats in the back for the first time, too, along with a boot that’s grown from 211 litres to 278 litres.
Designers have tried to keep the MINI three-door’s recognizable looks intact but it’s difficult to hide the fact this larger model just looks a little more dumpy. In profile, it’s almost like a lowered Countryman.
The engine line-up is borrowed from the standard hatch but there’s a brand new Cooper SD variant, which is seen for the very first time in the five-door before becoming available in the three-door later this year.
It’s a 2.0-litre turbodiesel producing 170bhp, which is 29bhp up on the old 2.0-litre unit. With that extra power, the sprint from 0-62mph takes 7.4 seconds (7.3 with an auto gearbox), which is half-a-second quicker than the old three-door SD. Fuel economy is as high as 68.9mpg, with emissions as low as 107g/km.
The car in our pictures is the Cooper S, which gets the same 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine as in the standard hatch. It’s the quickest in the range, able to hit 62mph in 6.9 seconds with the manual gearbox and 6.8 seconds with the auto. Both those times are a tenth down on the three-door, which weighs in at 60kg less.
From launch, buyers can also pick a Cooper and a Cooper D, boasting petrol and diesel 1.5-litre engines respectively. The Cooper gets 134bhp, can sprint from 0-62mph in 8.2 seconds and will return 58.8mpg. Meanwhile, the Cooper D has 116bhp and is capable of 76.3mpg.
MINI hasn’t released any information on pricing for the new five-door model but insiders have told us to expect an increase of about £1,000 over the standard hatch. It’s just the next step in boosting the MINI range, with this car helping to boost sales in markets like the US. Following the release of the five-door, MINI will release a Clubman and a Convertible.