Why the 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman Matters:
The new 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman is, essentially, a 2-door MINI Cooper Countryman with 4-passenger seating, a more dramatic roofline, a new approach to rear styling (for MINI), and a lowered sports suspension. The automaker calls it a “compact coupe crossover.”
As for why the Paceman matters, it would be easy to surmise that only MINI executives and MINI dealers can answer that question. But as a former Coloradan, I can assure you that there is a market for an affordable, stylish, turbocharged, all-wheel-drive car that looks good with a ski or snowboard rack on top of it.
What’s New for the 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman:
- “Helmet” roof design
- Horizontal taillight orientation
- First Mini with a rear nameplate
- Exclusive Starlight Blue paint
- New door panel design with integrated power window switches
- Standard center rail storage/attachment system
New 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman: Styling and Design
Take one MINI Cooper Countryman, remove the rear doors and lengthen the front doors, replace the top with a distinctive helmet-style roof, redesign the rear end with horizontally-oriented taillights and large “PACEMAN” lettering across the hatch, and you’ve pretty much got the new 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman. The new model rides on aluminum wheels sized 16 inches to 19 inches in diameter.
Inside, the Cooper Paceman is equipped with seating for four people with individual “lounge-style” rear seating. A center rail runs the length of the cabin between the seats, offering an attachment point for various accessories. Front sport seats are standard, and the Cooper Paceman is equipped with cloth, cloth and leather, or leather seating surfaces. As is the case with other MINI models, a wide range of colors, interior trims, and personalization options are available for the new Cooper Paceman.
With the rear seats in use, the Cooper Paceman’s trunk holds 11.6 cu.-ft. of cargo. Fold the rear seats down, and the car offers a total of 38.1 cu.-ft. of space.
New 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman: What’s Under the Hood
The engine installed in the 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman is dependent on which model a buyer selects.
The standard Cooper Paceman is equipped with 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine generating 121 horsepower and 114 lb.-ft. torque. According to MINI, it takes this model 10.8 seconds to accelerate to 60 mph with the optional 6-speed automatic transmission. A 6-speed manual gearbox is standard, and shaves more than a second off the run to 60 mph.
The Cooper S Paceman is equipped with a direct-injected, turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder making a far more satisfying 181 horsepower and 177 lb.-ft. of torque, the latter available between 1,600 rpm and 5,000 rpm. An Overboost function pushes torque to 192 lb.-ft. for short bursts of extra power.
Buyers can choose between a manual gearbox or an automatic transmission, the latter offering a set of shifter paddles. An optional Sport button quickens the Cooper S Paceman’s throttle response, adds steering heft, and (for models with the automatic transmission) sharpens shifts. Acceleration to 60 mph takes 6.9 seconds with row-‘em-yourself gears or 7.3 seconds with the automatic.
The Cooper S Paceman ALL4 has the same engine and transmissions as the regular Cooper S Paceman, but adds an all-wheel-drive system with variable power distribution. Acceleration times drop to 7.2 seconds with the manual gearbox and 7.6 seconds with the automatic.
A lowered sport suspension is standard for all Cooper Paceman models. However, buyers can forego the standard lowered sport suspension and get a Paceman with the same suspension tuning and ride height as a standard Countryman.
New 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman: Features and Technology
The 2014 Cooper Paceman is equipped with 6 standard airbags, 4-wheel-disc antilock brakes with cornering brake control and brake assist, a Dynamic Stability Control system, and Hill Assist.
Models with ALL4 add a Dynamic Traction Control system for easier going on dicey surfaces, and an Electronic Differential Lock Control, which MINI says enhances handling without affecting steering characteristics. These technologies are optional on other Paceman models.
Options for the Cooper Paceman include Comfort Access keyless entry and push-button starting, Xenon adaptive headlights, rain-sensing wipers, and parking assist sensors. A premium sound system is also optional for this model, along with MINI Connected smartphone pairing technology and a navigation system.
New 2014 MINI Cooper Paceman: What Autobytel Thinks
The 2014 Cooper Paceman is a gutsy move. What car company other than MINI would think it wise to build a 3-door hatchback with 2+2 seating and optional all-wheel drive? When it goes on sale in March of 2013, with base prices ranging from $23,900 to $29,200, we will find out if producing the Paceman will pay off.
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