The new Mini Countryman will be available as an EV in 2024
The new Mini Countryman has been revealed at the Munich motor show. Bigger than before, the Countryman gets more space, improved infotainment, the latest self-drive tech and will be available as a pure-electric or a petrol.
While recognisable as a Mini, the latest Countryman gets a minimalist look and an edgier design we’re not entirely convinced by. The angular headlights and octagonal grille are a striking departure from previous models' softer curves and you get more edges and right angles on the doors and around the taillights. In all, the new Mini Countryman is 30mm taller and 130mm longer than the old model.
The new Countryman is offered in three trims: Classic, Exclusive and Sport. Classic keeps the chrome details that have been a feature of the past, Exclusive is available in a range of vibrant contrast paint jobs, and Sport buys you a spicy body kit, a red contrast roof and a choice of red or white bonnet stripes.
2024 Mini Countryman: interior, infotainment and practicality
The interior has been even more comprehensively modernised than the exterior. The frameless, circular infotainment screen is a high-tech take on an old concept. Its crystal-clear OLED touchscreen, with a 9.5-inch diameter, is powered by Mini OS 9, which understands colloquial commands – started when you say "Hey, Mini…" – and is highly customisable.
The display changes depending on which of the eight driving modes you're in – choose Go-Kart and "there is a focus on Mini's racing DNA" with analogue dials "inspired by John Cooper Works".
You can even play games on the screen using your smartphone as a control. Heater controls are permanently visible – so there is no hunting through submenus to adjust the cabin temperature – and you still get a row of physical buttons and toggle switches.
The cleaner design leaves plenty of space for a thick band of textile trim that covers the entire face of the dashboard and is backlit, appearing to float free of the bulkhead. A sporty three-spoke steering wheel completes the look, and there is no instrument binnacle; either you do without or specify the optional head-up display.
Exactly how the interior looks depends on which model you go for. Classic models get a black '2D' knitted textile trim on the dash', black vegan-leather seats and, on the doors, two-tone knitted fabric. Exclusive models get houndstooth fabric trim, sports seats and a Spray-Tech headlining that blends three colours. Sport models are similar but with red stitching and multi-coloured knitted textiles, presumably in different colours from Exclusive.
Whichever version you go for, you get more room on the inside, 30mm extra elbow room in the front and 25mm in the rear. Petrol models, meanwhile, get a back seat that slides back 130mm and reclines by up to 12 degrees. All models have a 460-litre boot, with ample underfloor storage for electric versions' charging cables.
2024 Mini Countryman: autonomous driving tech
As you'd expect, a host of self-driving tech is available with the new Countryman. Most notably, it can steer you through gaps in traffic to exit the motorway. It can also do the accelerating, steering and braking for you (so long as you keep your hands on the steering wheel), park in and manoeuvre out of parking spaces. Finally, you can park the car remotely using Mini's smartphone app.
2024 Mini Countryman: EV powertrains, range, charging and petrol engines
For the first time, you'll be able to have your Mini Countryman with a choice of two electric powertrains badged E and SE All4. The E has a 64.7kWh battery for a 287-mile range under the WLTP cycle. A 204PS (150kW) motor translates to 0-62mph in 8.6 seconds and a 105mph top speed. The more potent all-wheel drive SE All4 has 313PS (230kW) for 0-62mph in 5.6 seconds and a 111mph top end and, with the same battery as the E, a 269-mile range.
Charging speeds of up to 130kW mean you can charge the battery from 10-80 per cent in 30 minutes using a public charger, and the battery will prewarm when the sat-nav's navigating to a charging station.
If you're not ready for electric, there are still three petrol models to choose from - the 170PS (125kW) Countryman C, 218PS (160kW) Countryman S All4 and 300PS (221kW) Countryman JCW All4.
2024 Mini Countryman: drive and chassis revisions
It's a measure of the market’s changing tastes that the Go-Kart mode on the Mini's infotainment screen is mentioned three pages before any technical details on how the new Countryman actually drives. That said, it gets an increased track to go along with its stretched wheelbase, and there's the option to fit adjustable dampers that lower the car by 15mm. Wheels range from 17 to 20 inches in size.
On sale in February 2024, the new Countryman starts from £28,500.