- Car Reviews
What is it like on the inside?
The cabin design couldn't come from anything other than a Mini, though there are subtle cues to the taller stature. For instance, the air vents are upright oblongs, where they're square in the Clubman and round in the hatch. A Top Gear spotter's guide for you there. As usual for a Mini, the driving position is terrific, setting the pedals and steering wheel in perfect alignment. Seats and wheel adjust plenty, too, with an electric memory option.
The speedo stands above the steering column, adjusting up and down as it goes. It's just about big enough (and its numbers are replicated in the optional flap-type head-up display). But the rev-counter is stupidly small and the needle has a short arc. Like a fuel gauge really. The fuel gauge itself is worse, a bar of rectangular LEDs. And the media screen sits inside the circular centre section like a big chunk of rectangle. Because that’s exactly what it is. Who says a square peg in a round hole doesn’t go? Well, us. Because it doesn’t.
Never mind, the rest of the switchgear is quality stuff, set into high-grade plastics with unfeasible numbers of custom trim options. You can even get stripy trim strips backlit in multi-coloured LEDs. Not as psychedelic as it sounds.
As standard you have a triplet of circular controllers under the media screen, with a set of up/down switches underneath - the middle flipper being the stop/start switch. It’s all quite cute and fun, and everything works well. And yes, if you go for the auto, there’s a familiar BMW-ish push/pull gear selector between the seats.
In the back, the seats give class-leading room for adults and a good view out. As an option, the seats split 60:40, and slide forward so you can make the boot even bigger while still getting non-grown-up people in the back. The boot has a handy double-position floor even on the ALL4, and generally there’s enough Mini-ness to feel familial, yet it feels more mature.