The Mini Coopers made a splash with their tiny size and cute looks, but people that need more space shied away from them, no matter how drawn they were to the Mini Coopers style. The Mini Cooper heard the cries of the people and this year will introduce the 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman, a new station wagon type vehicle based on the Mini Cooper platform.
A station wagon may not be the thing most people would want to drive around in, by the 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman has all of the Mini Cooper’s charm with almost twice the room. The Clubman name was first introduced to the public on a station wagon that was marketed from 1960 to 1982.
The parent company of the Mini Cooper, BMW, first debuted the Mini Cooper Clubman concept at the Frankfurt Auto Show last year after showing off the first wagon concept Mini Cooper in 2006 as the Mini Traveller. The 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman can be configured to carry either four or five adults. It is hardly as roomy or boxy as station wagons of old, but it is still much more roomy that the current Mini Cooper.
The front wheelbase on the 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman is 3.1 inches longer than the current Mini Cooper and it will be 9.5 inches wider. The rear overhand is stretched by 3.2 inches to get more storage space and better wagon proportions.
There is a rear access door for the second row of seats at it open toward the front,much like the Saturn Ions or an extended cab pick up truck. There is no outside handle for the rear access door and you have to open the front door before you can open the cargo storage area.
The back of the car has two doors that open at the center instead of having a more conventional tailgate or lift gate. There is a slight design flaw with the center opening doors. The steel body panels cause a huge blind spot when the driver attempts to look in the rear view mirror. The advantage to the center opening doors is easy access to any stored cargo. The cargo capacity is 9.1 cubic feet which expands to 32.6 cubic inches when the rear seats are folded flat.
The 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman isn’t a power house, but the engine is appropriate for its size. The S version of the Clubman comes standard with a 1.6 liter inline four cylinder engine that can produce 175 horsepower and 177 pound feet of torque. Both versions of the 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman will some standard with a manual six speed transmission and power steering,
The base version of the 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman will have 15 inch tires, but the upscale Cooper S version will feature larger 16 inch tires. The 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman also features power regenerating brakes to recharge the car’s battery. The alternator is disabled when the car accelerates to allow the small engine to use of all of its limited horsepower.
To view more pictures of the 2009 Mini Cooper Clubman, visit our Car Picture Gallery.