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Car Review: 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman ALL4

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You can’t help but notice the lower stance and more aggressive look when you first check out the 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman ALL4. This car is the result of years of real world testing and customer feedback that enabled MINI to build the car that many people crave. That’s a good thing for MINI.

EXTERIOR

With a sporty new exterior design and styled as a coupé interpretation of the Countryman, the inspired look of the 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman has that It factor! Packed with MINI character and obvious design cues which tie it to the rest of the range, the three-door Paceman’s unique exterior styling is what immediately catches the eye. Built on the Countryman platform, bumper to bumper the car is 4,109 mm (4,115mm for MINI Cooper S Paceman and Cooper SD Paceman), which makes it almost identical in size to its sibling.

With a contemporary and expressive body shape, the Paceman has been created to appeal to a new type of design-conscious customer. The prominent horizontal lines and dynamic curved surfaces give the promise of sporting performance, yet there is an elegant simplicity to the overall form of the car. The upright front grille, complete with hexagonal radiator grille and broad chrome surround, gives the Paceman genuine presence. Its coupé-style stretched side profile features long doors, while the blacked-out pillars create a “floating roof” concept, as already seen on the MINI Coupe. Available in either black, white or body colour, the roof gently slopes towards the rear of the car, ending at the integrated spoiler. The horizontal arrangement of the rear lights, which accentuates the car’s width, is a first for MINI. The Paceman is the only member of the brand’s line-up to be identified by a rear nameplate.

Some of the upscale features included power folding mirrors, heated mirrors with washing jets, a huge dual pane panoramic sunroof and 19-inch alloy wheels.

INTERIOR

As with all MINIs, the cabin space is much more than anticipated, and the Paceman comes through with an inspired interior that is both smart and sporty. The car’s interior has been designed specifically for this model. It’s highlight is the innovative rear seat, which has been styled around a lounge concept. Two individual chairs provide generous levels of head, shoulder and knee room with outstanding comfort and support. Armrests have been integrated into the rear trim. A two-section version of the MINI Centre Rail storage and attachment system – first seen in the Countryman – comes as standard. A full-length variant is available as an option.

The Paceman is a strict four-seater, though practicality has not been sacrificed. Folding down the rear seats expands the rear load-carrying capacity from 330 litres to a maximum of 1,080 litres. Access is via a large and high-opening tailgate, offering extra practicality for owners. In the front, the raised seating position gives the driver and passenger an excellent view in every direction. The instrument panel includes many familiar components, including the large round central speedo. However, its black surround and decorative inner rings in high-gloss black or chrome are new, as are the redesigned air vent surrounds. Buttons for the windows, which have been toggle switches below the speedo on every MINI to date, have moved to the door trim panel. The Nav pack was awesome and included voice command, Bluetooth and USB/iPod, smartphone integration, real-time traffic information and MINI navigation system. Also included was automatic climate control, comfort access keyless entry, harman/kardon premium sound and black leather seating.

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PERFORMANCE

The 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman ALL4 can flat out kick butt when you hit the gas! MINI’s trademark go-kart handling stands as a key part of the Paceman’s appeal, enhanced by the optional all-wheel drive transmission as tested. Lowered sports suspension as a standard feature helps provide customers with an outstanding driving experience that we can attest to all day long. Under the hood of the 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman ALL4 is a turbocharged direct injected 1.6 liter, 16-valve, 4 cylinder engine with Valvetronic ALL4 fulltime intelligent all-wheel drive system clocking 23mpg in the city and 30mpg on the highway. The electric power assisted steering owns the road and corner brake control is there when you take that tight turn. Under the Paceman’s body shell, sophisticated chassis technology includes MacPherson spring struts and forged cross members at the front axle, a multi-link rear axle and electric power steering with Servotronic function.

OVERVIEW

MINI fans looking for a bit more from their ride will jump for joy when they test the 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman ALL4, as the space and power compliments a sleek exterior design. The underpinnings are solid, and one can feel that in the driving experience. What’s also interesting is how MINI was able to pack all of these options in the car with a sticker price of just $39,800. When you have an iconic design like the MINI Cooper, you don’t want to overhaul that look, and credit is due to their team, as the 2013 MINI Cooper S Paceman ALL4 is fresh but keeping with the cues of the original.

  

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