2019 MINI Clubman: Mighty Mover

Posted by Shane Kalicharan about 2 years ago

The lovable Mini of the 60’s is easily one of the most iconic vehicles of all time – whether you’re into cars or not. It was a symbol of British ingenuity, offering consumers a vehicle that was practical, economical and stylish. The modern Mini is a bit of a far cry from that iconic 60’s runabout, growing larger and more luxurious, with multiple models and trims available. But, like its ancestors, the Mini of our time is still a very charming car with a retro inspired design. And even though it’s fallen victim to the bloat of a modern vehicle, the Clubman proves it’s still impressively practical. 

Fitting the slot between the 5-door Mini Cooper and the Countryman, the Clubman is long, sleek and flat, but still very roomy. Unlike a traditional rear hatch, the Clubman features a split rear door, technically making it a 6-door hatchback. It’s a unique approach, but maybe not entirely a necessary one. As cool as it looks, it does make closing the hatch take a little longer. It’ll also require buying a second wiper blade when it comes time to replace them.

With the split hatch, you also get some reduced visibility. On paper these are all drawbacks, but in person, we found it to be rather stylish and although subjective, we think it’s worth the slight negatives. It may be form over function, but the massive trunk in the Clubman certainly more than makes up for it.

To put its practicality to the test, we volunteered the Clubman’s cavernous 1250L trunk space to a friend and his wife moving out of their condo. Years of playing Tetris and Dr. Mario as a child and the fantastically laid out rear boot of the Clubman fit an impressive amount of goods in the back, garnering a very surprised response from the formerly anti-hatchback friend.

Even with a trunk full of goods, the Clubman was no slouch on the highway and in the corners, handling and performing as adequately as you’d expect. It has some punch to it, but if you want sportiness, you’re better off opting for the S model. Or if you really want to move, perhaps the John Cooper Works variant. Otherwise, the Clubman is a very comfortable vehicle. The exhaust is a little on the loud and droning side but it’s only under harder acceleration. At cruising speeds, it’s perfectly tolerable.

Minis are known for being fun and quirky and we think the Clubman certainly fits the bill, right down to its split trunk. With a starting price of just over $28,000, you get a lot of room for your money. Options and trim level does rack up the cost fairly quickly though. It’s not going to be the fastest, most fuel efficient ride, but we think it’s practicality and charm will win over drivers. It certainly won our anti-hatchback friend over, at least.

Tags:
Mini, Mini Cooper, Mini clubman, hatchback, car, car review, BMW

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