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£30,020 when new
This Mini has a long name, huh? Yep, but there are only two initials you really need to pay much attention to – SD. We’ve driven the new Mini Countryman before, as a Cooper S petrol, but given it’s a family car, you’ll probably still be more inclined to go diesel, no matter what the Daily Mail says about it. So what we have here is Mini’s 2.0-litre 190bhp/295lb ft fast diesel mated to an eight-speed automatic gearbox (standard on the SD) and the All4 four-wheel-drive system (£1,600), leading to a £29,565 asking price. Apart from the speed, most of what we say here will also apply to the lesser D-for-diesel version (150bhp, prices from £24,425). There are reasons I bring that car up now which will become apparent later. What’s important to remember here is that the Countryman has changed. It’s now based on the same platform as the BMW X1, and although priced slightly lower, is now designed to compete head-on with crossovers such as the Ford Kuga and Honda CR-V.