2011 MINI Countryman to debut in January

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MINI will have a slightly less mini MINI model with the addition of the four wheel drive Countryman to the lineup.

The fourth member of the MINI family, the Countryman, follows the Hatch, Convertible and Clubman but is the first to have four doors, seating for four adults and the first to offer four wheel drive

Available in three trims, the Cooper Countryman will be equipped with an upgraded 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with fully variable valve management and an output of 121 horsepower, shared with other Cooper models.

All Countryman variants will be available with a standard six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic transmission complete with manual control.

The base Cooper Countryman starts at $27,850 and the top trim Cooper S Countryman ALL4 starts with an MSRP of $34,400.

Called “distinctly different” from any other Cooper before, the new unit is longer wider and taller than the MINI Hatch. BMW says new chassis technology gives it improved handling characteristics.

As did all Coopers before it, the new model will come with a wide array of customize options. There are numerous interior upholstery and colour variations along with 10 options packages, nine stand-alone options and three different wheels from which to choose.

The Canadian models come with no-charge scheduled maintenance for three-years or 50,000 km (whichever comes first), as do all 2011 MINI models.

Expect to see the Countryman in MINI’s 26 Canadian retail facilities in January.