Notes: Power steering problems are a major issue with the 2004 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:
9 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
75,059 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.

2004 Mini Cooper steering problems

steering problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2004 Mini Cooper:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2004 Mini Cooper Owner Comments (Page 9 of 21)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #257

Oct 132011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • miles


I had power steering one day and the next day when I was driving I began to make a turn and realized my power steering went out. To this day it has never came back. I was told it is something like an electric hydraulic pump but the price is so outrageous I cannot afford to get it fixed so I just try to drive it as little as possible and be as careful as I can.

- Arnold, MO, USA

problem #256

Apr 012011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
Power steering failed making it difficult to drive/ turn vehicle. This has happened multiple times. Typically the power steering comes back after a minute or two but during the latest incident it did not come back on.

- Paoli, PA, USA

problem #255

May 262009

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 40,000 miles
Power steering failed, car would not turn. Second occasion 1/19/12 same thing at 40mph. After car rests problem disappears. Almost impossible to turn car at all.

- Venice, CA, USA

problem #254

Jan 232012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 50,700 miles


Power steering failed while on a highway.

- New York, NY, USA

problem #253

Dec 272011


  • 175,000 miles
Power steering stopped working---while driving on curve---impacted car control. Regained power steering. This happened two more times. Very dangerous!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

- Powell, TN, USA

problem #252

Sep 072011


  • 90,000 miles
Electric power steering pump failed while driving. I noticed it when I went to change lanes and the car resisted. I slowed for a corner and when attempting to turn, it became very apparent that there was no steering assist. This is a common failure on the first generation MINIcoopers that is unacceptable and depending on the circumstances, potentially dangerous.

- Canton, MI, USA

problem #251

Jan 072012


  • 84,500 miles


Lent car to boyfriend to drive me to boston (100 mile one way). On the way home he stopped at a store approximately 10 miles from the house. When he came back out of the store ( was in store approximately 10 minutes) the power steering no longer worked. It was like trying to steer through concrete for him. A few days later he tried the car and it all worked fine again. Based on prior complaints filed, I am concerned that the issue will reoccur when I am driving causing obvious safety concerns, or that it may catch fire (based on other complaints filed for similar issues) and that I will be facing the cost of replacing the power steering unit (which does not sound like it has been reengineered since this issue became known).

- Portland, ME, USA

problem #250

Jan 062012


  • 115,900 miles
The contact owns a 2004 MINICooper S. while driving 35 mph, the contact stated the vehicle lost all power steering. The dealer informed the contact that the power steering pump failed and to replace the pump as well as the battery to correct the failure. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. No repairs were performed. The current mileage was 116,000 and the failure mileage was 115,900.

- North Hollywood, CA, USA

problem #249

Apr 122011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
Power steering froze up as we turned a corner and then died out completely. It has never returned. Very close to causing a collision because of the loss of power steering.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #248

Oct 142011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
I was driving my MINICooper S on the freeway going into a turn, the wheel became extremely hard to turn with no notice. I could not make the turn all the way and the drivers side tires and fender hit the curb on the freeway. I fought the car off the freeway and let it sit for 15 mins while I called MINIThe dealer said that my power steering had failed. After a wait of 15 mins the car started and drove just fine. I drove the car to the dealership and they tested the power steering pump and said that it was good at that time. They told me that it would continue to be a problem with just giving out at random times unless I spent $4000 and had all the components replaced even though it tested good at the time. They replaced all the bushings and struts in the front at that time for $2000. They told me not to replace the power steering unless it totally stopped working. The second incident was 5000 miles later on a round about at 35 mph. The steering had just failed again. This is a dangerous situation when the dealer tests the system after a failure and claims that it is good, and then it fails again with no warning. I think that the manufacture should take responsibility and have all the systems upgraded to not fail at such low mileage and if they do fail to be able to track such a failure.

- Fallon, NV, USA

problem #247

Jan 042012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 117,238 miles


I had driven the vehicle to work without incident. Started vehicle after work and immediately noticed that the power steering was not working. Drove the vehicle 34 miles and parked it for 30 minutes. When I restarted the vehicle the power steering was again working.

- Lancaster, OH, USA

problem #246

Sep 152010

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
While driving the power steering cut out creating an unsafe driving condition. Over the next 20,000 miles the power steering would intermittently come back and go out more than a dozen times until eventually failing completely.

- Burlington, CT, USA

problem #245

Dec 152011


  • 79,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 MINICooper S. while driving approximately 30 mph and making a turn, the steering wheel seized. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnostic testing where the technician advised that the power steering pump failed and would have to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The approximate failure mileage was 79,000.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #244

Jan 012012


  • 61,000 miles
Sudden power steering failure while driving.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #243

Dec 232011


  • 73,321 miles
Power steering pump failed as I was exiting I-80 @ exit 56 returning home from work. As I started onto the exit ramp and began to curve to the right, the steering was very hard in the car which resulted in my having to force the wheel to the right. I also was braking at this point given the surprise of the tight wheel. I ended up on the shoulder of the ramp before gaining control of the car and reducing the speed. When I got to the top of the ramp and stopped, the pump began to work again. On 12/27 the pump failed again as I backed out of my garage. I pulled the car back into the garage and parked it until I can resolve this issue. I purchased the car used several months ago with 67K miles. I searched the forums to see if anyone else has had this issue and found many reports of pump/fan failures. This is a safety risk to anyone who owns one of these cars. I cannot imagine what would've happened had my wife been driving my car when the pump failed, it was all I could do to keep from wrecking into the median area.

- Princeton, IL, USA

problem #242

Sep 012011


  • 80,000 miles
The power steering pump just all of a suddenly without warning failed on my MINIcooper. I was going down the highway at 70 mph when I went to get off on a off ramp and the car took alot of force for me to steer it in the right direction. I was lucky to not have snow at the time because if I did I could have possibly lost control of my car. I know alot of people have had this happen to them and for the price that these pumps they should last alot longer than have.

- Allegan, MI, USA

problem #241

Sep 072011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 59,995 miles
Power steering stopped working, 1st time whilst at a traffic light, 2nd time whilst pulling out of a parking spot. Steering becomes very heavy, almost unmanageable. I haven't used the car in the last three months as I have been out of the country, I need to look into replacing the steering pump, fan and a cover.

- Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA

problem #240

Dec 082009

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 25,000 miles
The cars power steering started failing for a few seconds while driving at slow speed. This has happened at least 20 or more times over the last 2 years. The steering of the vehicle becomes extremely hard. There is no warning that this will occur, so clearly it could result in an accident. In the last 12 months, the power steering has started to fail when the car is started, but started working again if the car was restarted or after a short period of time. This week, after 3 hours of driving, the car was parked for 15 minutes, when the car was restarted there was no power steering at all during another 5 minutes of driving. The care was stopped for another 20 minutes and when restarted power steering was restored. I am very concerned that this failure could occur during high speed maneuvering and could result in a major accident. I feel that I have been lucky to date that I haven't been in a situation that resulted in an accident, precise control of the vehicle is impossible without the power steering.

- State College, PA, USA

problem #239

Nov 142011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 MINICooper S. the contact stated that when he started the vehicle the power steering failed and the steering wheel became abnormally stiff. The dealer was notified of the failure who stated that there were no recalls for the failure. The manufacturer was not notified of the issue and the vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 69,000...updated 01/04/12 the consumer stated the power steering pump was replaced at a cost of $866.67. The consumer has since traded the vehicle. Updated 01/09/12

- Blairsville, PA, USA

problem #238

Dec 092011


  • 120,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 MINICooper. The contact stated that the power steering assist failed without warning, causing extreme difficulty in steering control. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing or repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The VIN was not available. The failure and the current mileage was 120,000.

- Salinas, CA, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?