Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety. Notes: Power steering problems are a major issue with the 2005 Mini Cooper, with hundreds of owners reporting complaints to the NHTSA about their power steering suddenly failing while driving.

Some power steering failures have caused crashes & injuries. Average mileage at failure is well under 100,000 miles & the repair cost is over $1,000. Not good.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
10 / 16
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
72,720 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Mini Cooper steering problems

steering problem

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2005 Mini Cooper Owner Comments (Page 5 of 26)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #427

Sep 202012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 60,246 miles


In September 2012 I noticed a loud fan noise that wouldn't turn off. The car was also overheating. I noticed that it was very hard to steer the car, but I thought that was due to the overheating. Mechanic determined failed cylinder head gasket in 11/2012. The radiator was replaced and the thermostat was replaced. In 11/2012 the water pump was also replaced. In 12/2012 the battery had to be replaced. In 06/2013 the heater core was replaced. I believe that these issues are directly related to the loss of power steering and the associated fan failing, which caused the car to overheat and the battery to fail. Please see NHTSA complaints 10453158, 10444328, 10379750, 10442431,10379459 for similar cases of these same issues related to the failure of power steering and the associated pump.

- Mckinleyville, CA, USA

problem #426

Jul 152012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 95,900 miles
While I was driving on the highway approximately 65 mph my steering gave out and locked up, almost slamming me into the guard rail. I was fortunate enough to stop before tragedy. Unfortunately I was blocking a lane of traffic until I could force my way of the roadway. The second incident happened as I was turning into my own driveway. The steering locked up again causing me to miss my driveway and crash into the ditch. The other safety issues with my car is the windshield wipers will stop working at random and the reverse and tail lights will fail at random. The engine light stays on and the codes read emissions failure. When I talk to MINICooper customer relations they gave me an extended 100,000 mile warranty on the power steering and emissions. MINICooper claims they can't do the safety repairs due to a part shortage. They extended my already extended warranty to 150,000 miles and are wanting to charge me for diagnostics on these extended warranty issues. They will not offer any resolution and claim it is my problem as a consumer and claim the power steering issues are not safety related. When I asked about the electrical lighting issues they replied with that's not MINICoopers problem.

- Howe , OK, USA

problem #425

Jun 192013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 123,890 miles
The manufacturer has recently stated they are going to extend the life of the warranty for the power steering pump for models ranging from the years 2002-2005 and some 2005 MINIconvertibles. I have a 2005 MINIconvertible, and have the faulty power steering pump that they have extended the warranty life for. I immediately called my local MINIdealership to get my car fixed and found that there is a waiting list to get the work done. From what I have been told the parts are entirely unavailable, and I can expect to wait up to a month before I can expect to be able to get my car fixed. Till then however I cannot get my cars inspection renewed as in my state a car cannot pass without power steering. I have been left without any feasible means of transportation, and upon begging MINIto help with my problem which they have created I was told that they were going to do nothing about it. This leaves me with either having to break Texas state law and drive the car without current inspection, or drop out of school as I will have no way of getting there until the MINIfixes the problem.

- Denton, TX, USA

problem #424

Dec 292011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • miles


Car was making a very loud noise. Took it to shop who identified it as a failing power steering pump cooling fan, and replaced it.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #423

Mar 292013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 MINICooper. The contact stated that while driving 20 mph, the steering wheel failed without warning. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnosis where it was advised to the contact that the steering pump needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #422

Nov 112011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 67,250 miles
Power steering fan burned out which caused the pump to fail. Seems to be a known problem with this model year. The placement of the fan is really bad because it's subject to constant road grime, salt, etc. Cost me over $1,200 to fix. :(

- E. Dundee, IL, USA

problem #421

Apr 092013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 51,033 miles


Problem of power assist failing causing steering to become difficult. Only happens after been on highway for more than 15 minutes. Very similar to other reports on 2004-2005 MINICooper S's reporting this problem.

- Edina, MN, USA

problem #420

May 142013


  • 106,000 miles
Temporary loss of power steering.

- Franklin, WI, USA

problem #419

May 162012


  • 96,720 miles
I had been having problems with the power steering in my car going in and out at random times. To fix this problem I would just turn the car off and then back on. Now, however, the power steering is always off. I have managed to drive just fine for months without, because I simply don't have the money to get the system replaced. It has finally come to the time of year when I have to get my inspection renewed, and I have now learned that the car will not pass inspection in my state because of its lack of power steering. If the car cannot pass a state inspection without the power steering, how is it that there has not been a recall made because of the power steering system failure making the car unsafe to drive? there is clearly a design flaw with the power steering system. It is entirely unfair that not only has there not been a recall made forcing BMW to fix this design flaw, but there is also laws in place that force me to either stop driving, get a new car, or spend money I don't have to get it fixed.

- Denton, TX, USA

problem #418

Apr 262013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
Wife was driving her 2005 MINICooper (R50) when the power steering failed thus causing a very frightening and possibly very dangerous situation.

- Calgary, CA, USA

problem #417

Apr 162013

Cooper 4-cyl Diesel

  • 104,000 miles


While driving on a curvy road the power steering went out making it very difficult to maneuver. This seems to be an intermittent problem and is very dangerous!

- Belton, SC, USA

problem #416

Apr 052013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 99,427 miles
Power steering pump failed while driving. It is a combination electro/hydraulic pump. Electrical burn smell was evident. I almost got in an accident, and luckily there was no car in the other lane or I would have hit them. Canada has made BMW MINIrecall these as it is a common problem.

- Wellington, FL, USA

problem #415

Jan 252013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 68,000 miles
The steering wheel stops turning while mid-turn. I took the car to MINIof san francisco and for whatever reason, they could not find a problem. The steering continues to be a problem, happening randomly when the car is first started up.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #414

Apr 182013


  • miles
Hello, over the past few months the steering on my 2005 MINICooper cuts out unexpectedly. The wheel is almost impossible to turn when this happens, and it occurs with no warning. It appears that the steering pump fails when the car warms up. I have noticed many other owners of this make and model making the same complaint in online forums. The car is not safe to drive in this condition. [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Guilford, CT, USA

problem #413

Apr 102013


  • 77,000 miles
Loss of power steering..nearly a collision.

- Lititz, PA, USA

problem #412

Mar 092013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 76,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 MINICooper convertible. The contact stated that while driving approximately 50 mph, the vehicle became difficult to maneuver. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 76,000.

- San Antonio, TX, USA

problem #411

Sep 012012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
Parked the car to go in a store, in the store for 10 minutes. Came out to start the car and the steering wheel was stiff and did not want to move. Cut the car off and was looking into ways to get the car towed. I tried to start the car back up maybe 15-20 minutes later and it was working just fine. Ever sense then, the car's power steering would stop functioning and then reset itself once the car was stopped and idle. You can never predict when this will happen or when it won't. the power steering issues have gotten progressively worse with longer intervals of wait time before the power steering starts functioning again. The wheel when the power steering stops functioning is virtually immovable it is almost impossible to make turns unless they are wide ones. This is a tremendous safety hazard and the power steering pump is clearly defective.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #410

Mar 012013

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 74,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 MINICooper. The contact stated that while driving approximately 18 mph, the steering wheel became extremely difficult to maneuver without warning. The vehicle also overheated and a loud noise was heard coming from the front end of the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic where the technician advised that the power steering fluid needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure and current mileage was 74,000.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #409

Mar 312013


  • 66,040 miles
Was driving on nys thruway when I thought I'd gotten a flat tire due to sluggish steering now hours later and a little internet investigation I think it to be the power steering pump. This should be recalled asap before someone is killed.

- Camden, NY, USA

problem #408

Mar 292013


  • 100,850 miles
The power steering failed. Searching, this appears to be a very common problem.

- Hillsboro, VA, USA

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