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 / 17
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
73,175 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 26 of 26)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #12

Oct 132009


  • 50,250 miles


2005 MINIcooper S convertible. Just over 50,000 miles. Today, whilst driving to lunch, my power steering failed. There was no warning, it just quit, mid-drive. The car is now very difficult to steer. This could have easily caused an accident. Looking online, I see that this is a common failure, yet there have been no recalls.

- Lexington, KY, USA

problem #11

Aug 252009


  • 32,500 miles
Wife was driving her 2005 MINICooper and said that several minutes after starting her drive, the power steering began acting erratically. The power steering assist would go cease when she was turning a corner, forcing her to muscle the car in unassisted steering mode. Then, the power steering would kick in, resulting in oversteer in the middle of the turn, requiring quick correction. I was unable to replicate the problem when she returned home that day. However, the next day, the power steering was no longer functioning at all. Concerned about driving the vehicle in that condition, we took it to be repaired. Since the car was no longer in warranty (only 32,500 miles, but >4 years old) we did not take it to the dealer for service. Our repair shop diagnosed the problem as a failure of the power steering pump fan, which in turn led to a failure of the power steering pump. He said the layout of these items was poorly designed, increasing the chance of failure and that he thought MINIhad modified the layout in subsequent years. Total cost for the repair was $1,650.

- Eagan, MN, USA

problem #10

Jul 082009


  • 35,230 miles
Power steering pump fan seized. Per dealership and independent mechanic, most common MINIrepair. Problem is that seized fan motor continues to draw power which drains battery. Had to have car jumped by aaa to get it started to bring in for repair. Now all the dashboard electrical functions are malfunctioning: No speedometer/tach/gas gage read out. In excess of $2K to fix plus already paid $400 for new power steering fan and battery, hoping that was all that was needed.

- Minnetonka, MN, USA

problem #9

Jul 062009


  • 58,700 miles


Intermittent (twice within 40 minutes) power steering failure. First occurrence while turning a corner, continued until I pulled in to make a call to the dealership. Once I restarted the vehicle to take it back to the dealership, the power steering was apparently working normally again. While telephoning the dealership that it was working again, the power steering went out again and remained nonfunctional until parking the car. An hour later, back in the car to take it to the dealership, power steering again appeared to be functioning normally until arrival at the dealership, where they can not duplicate the system failure, where it remains to date.

- Kansas City, MO, USA

problem #8

Jun 122009


  • 31,440 miles
Driving home the power steering locked up. Got the car parked. Next morning the car was dead. Nothing worked. Towed car to repair shop. Mechanic called and said car must go to the dealer. Had car towed to dealer. 1st estimate from dealer was $2350 for a new power steering pump, power steering harness and a new battery. Car remained at the dealer until today 6/19/09. Total for the work performed was $1058.39 which included a $99.95 grease oil and filter.

- Winthrop, MA, USA

problem #7

Jun 092009


  • 45,000 miles
Regular driving at around 6pm at about 40mph around a bend, complete power steering failure, the car became very heavy to steer, with no prior warning, and no warning lights. Almost caused an accident as the car failed to steer. Nothing has been done, the warranty has been over for 3 months and MINIare saying a goodwill repair might be available, but will not do a free diagnostic, help us get to a dealership or promise anything beforehand. A new power steering pump is likely needed, as per the evidence of the european recall, and other MINIdriver testimony.

- Huntington Beach, CA, USA

problem #6

Jun 092009


  • 45,000 miles


I was driving down the street at about 40 mph and my steering became extremely hard and almost refused to completely work as I was rounding a bend! I had to slam on my brakes to avoid an accident and slowly inch to a safe parking spot. After being scared out of my wits, I calmed down and parked my car. I let the car sit overnight and checked power steering fluid and it was full. I then looked online and found many MINIowners with the same problem. MINIsays they will not fix it.

- Huntington Beach, CA, USA

problem #5

Apr 202009


  • 49,000 miles
Power steering unit stopped working driving normal highway conditions resulting in very difficult driving/handling. Car has 48,000 miles and has been serviced on schedule. Unit's fluids were normal and driving conditions were a normal commute. Potentially a very dangerous condition.

- Black Diamond, WA, USA

problem #4

Feb 222009


  • 68 miles
Car power steering went out while exiting a freeway. Problem is intermittent and very scary.

- Porterville, CA, USA

problem #3

Dec 202008


  • 45,000 miles
Power steering went completely out on my wife's 2005 MINICooper. No warning, indications, or events led up to failure.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #2

Oct 302008


  • 97,000 miles
Auto was parked in driveway after a 30 mile drive, turned off and keys removed. After some time being parked, car started billowing smoke from under the hood. Dash lights came on, parking lights came on spontaneously. No keys present in the vehicle. Before I was able to disconnect the battery the apparent short circuit had drained the battery. Vehicle was towed to MINIof peabody MA where it was determined the electro-hydraulic power steering pump had shorted out causing the wiring harness to be destroyed and also destroying the battery.

- Hollis, NH, USA

problem #1

May 012007

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
Power steering pump on 2005 MINICooper convertible started making noise (even with engine turned off, draining the battery), then ultimately failed. An internet search indicates that this repair costs approx $2000 to fix, and that replacement power steering pumps fail regularly, so we've been driving without power steering in the vehicle.

- Bartlett, TN, USA

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