Since the death of the Fiat 500, finding affordable two-door hatchbacks has become more difficult. Mini set out to fix that with the 2022 Mini Oxford Edition, ringing in at just over $20,000 for the two-door model and $1,000 more for a four-door version.
That’s significant because it’s about half the price of an all-electric BMW i3 in the same size range, plus Mini decided to freeze the pricing for this model in 2018, making it a bargain-basement surprise. It has a punchy three-cylinder engine and decent technology, and if you live in the city where parking spots are at a premium, this tiny vehicle will squeeze into spaces you couldn’t with a full-size sedan.
The Mini Cooper fleet was updated in January with some facial reconstruction and a new grille. It’s a bite-sized fun car and looks like it weighs no more than your middle schooler (the Mini Hardtop two-door tips the scale at 3,500 pounds).
Oxford Editions come with 17-inch silver or black wheels, heated seats, and a sunroof. Under the cozy bonnet there’s a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-banger that pumps out a respectable 134 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque, and I think it might even make tea for you if you ask nicely. Sure, you could have 301 horsepower in the JCW Clubman or Countryman models, but those will cost you upwards of $40,000, and that is not nearly as appealing if you’re on a budget.
On the driver-assist side, the Oxford Edition also includes the same front-collision- and lane-departure-warning systems as the Mini Hardtop Classic. Inside the cabin, a decently-sized 8.8-inch touchscreen sits right in the middle of the dash with the usual FM/AM/Sirius combination.
The body style is charming, and Union Jack tail lights and aerodynamic air curtains look natty on the Oxford Edition, plus the car comes in six colors. Personally, if I were in the market for a Mini I’d splurge for a convertible, but the hardtop is temptingly cheap.
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