Following its success at this year's Auto Express New Car Honours, MINI has impressed yet more pundits with stunning group test victories in print and on television. Car magazine has awarded MINI its coveted Hot Hatch of the Year title in its October issue, whilst Channel 4's Driven heaped praise on the Oxford-built car in the first of a new series this week, resulting in MINI receiving the highest ever score on the Driven 100 index.

MINI One took the spoils on this week's Driven, impressing both the Manchester public and the programme's presenters, Mike Brewer, Jason Plato and Penny Mallory. With points awarded out of 25 against its more expensive rivals in each of the categories of Cost of Ownership, Desirability, Practicality and Driveability, MINI One scored a record-breaking 78 points.

The Driven team explained the MINI's success. Ex-rally star Mallory said, "It puts a big, big smile on your face," and British Touring Car star Plato said, "What a great drive that was." Mike Brewer summed up the programme's Manchester test by claiming, "It is the true people's car."

Car magazine pitched the MINI Cooper against rivals from Ford, Toyota, Peugeot, Citroen, Alfa Romeo, MG Rover, Seat, Vauxhall and Volkswagen in its annual Hot Hatch of the Year group test claiming, "There's never been such a good choice of scintillating hot hatches." The ten cars tested had to be sub-£16,000 and have a power output of less than 160 bhp.

At £11,600 the MINI Cooper was the lowest priced yet took the spoils. Mike Duff, Car magazine's Road Test Editor explained, "The Cooper is capable of rewarding like almost nothing else. Turn-in is phenomenal?steering is excellent. I think I'm in love."

Trevor Houghton-Berry, MINI's General Manager said, "We're really chuffed at the Driven and Car magazine results. The group tests pitched both MINI One and Cooper against excellent cars, yet the MINIs came out shining. I was particularly pleased with the result on Driven as it wasn't just in the hands of the presenters, but also the public's choice."


Published : 28/09/01 Author : Melanie Carter

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