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 3 of 26)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #472

Apr 042015

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles


Parked at shopping mall and not running for at least 30 minutes, come out to MINIcooper on fire. Smoke coming out of engine area, high pitch fan whirling, electrical smell. Power steering failed, shorted out, and caught on fire. Vehicle was not even on and parked when this happened. Appears to be a major failure many others owning a MINIcooper have experienced. BMW/MINIcooper of usa did nothing for us and put it all on our and my insurances shoulders. Amazed so many cases of this same issue have happened yet they do nothing and seem to expect everyone else to foot the bill. Got the run around by BMW and unless it was for my insurance company, the MINIwould have been scrapped.

- Grass Valley, CA, USA

problem #471

Apr 022015

Cooper 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,200 miles
The contact owns a 2005 MINICooper. The contact stated that the power steering failed and the transmission was leaking fluid. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the power steering pump, fan, and the transmission needed to be replaced. The power steering was repaired at a cost of $1900. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 64,200. Updated 7/1/15 updated 07/09/15

- Chicago , IL, USA

problem #470

Apr 232015

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 101,000 miles
Driving up a residential street on my return from work, steering very abruptly became very difficult. Apparent power steering pump failure.

- Danville, CA, USA

problem #469

Dec 172014


  • 80,000 miles


Power steering pump failed to turn off with vehicle. Resulted in battery being drained and ultimately loss of power steering. Power steering pump, fan, and fluid had to be replaced as a result of fan becoming seized, pump overheating and failing.

- Royal Oak, MI, USA

problem #468

Jan 082015

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 74,579 miles
Power steering pump failed, and there is a recall for 2002-2005 coopers, but for some reason our VIN is not covered, why" obviously the recall came long after the cars were delivered, does our really have a different part number of pump? why isn't our covered by the recall"

- Cypress, CA, USA

problem #467

Dec 202014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 88,000 miles
About two weeks prior to the fire, my back bumper was hit by someone, nothing too serious just the tail light broken. Their insurance had my car fixed at world Toyota collision center in atlanta Georgia. On Saturday morning, I picked up my car. I noticed clicking noise coming out from inside the car and the steering wheel becoming rigid as soon as I started driving. I pulled to the closest gas station (was in need of gas as well). White smoke came out from the front right after I parked. My husband lifted up the hood trying to see where the smoke is from. Not even two minutes later, there was flame, yes, actual fire underneath the engine compartment. Fortunately, there were two officers next to us at that time so they used fire extinguisher to take the fire down. I'm extremely frightened and disappointed at MINIcooper. Very dangerous car.

- Norcross, GA, USA

problem #466

Dec 092014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 99,850 miles


My power steering completely stopped working while driving. It has been leaking fluid for months and had a slight steering resistance a month or so but was random and didn't continue. Now, it remains very difficult to drive at all times.

- Oneonta, AL, USA

problem #465

Dec 012014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 99,200 miles
Power steering whine

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #464

Oct 152014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 94,253 miles
Power steering abruptly stopped working while cornering causing driver to use heavy manual force to corner the vehicle thru a tricky viaduct train bridge passageway. While midway into the turn, the power steering abruptly "kicked back on" causing the steering wheel to turn violently across lane and nearly into corner of cement wall holding up overhead train bridge. Other cars were missed, and driver stopped car with front bumper slightly touching viaduct cement wall. Wife and 7 year old child were on the impact side of vehicle. Vehicle was checked by an independent mechanic which noted the ehps power steering pump is failing. He cleaned the power steering pump and installed a new cooling fan on the power steering pump. The pump was overheated and packed with metal debris. Independent mechanic advised me to return to MINIas potential recall issue which has been widely reported but refuted by MINIPower steering pump still has significant noise and is scheduled for review by a MINIdealer.

- Birmingham, MI, USA

problem #463

Sep 172014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 49,000 miles
Power steering system fire.

- Landenberg, PA, USA

problem #462

Sep 102014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 62,700 miles


The power steering on my 2005 MINICooper failed while I was driving the car. Fortunately I was traveling at a slow rate of speed when this incident occurred. I have discovered that this is not an uncommon problem in a MINIand that MINIis well aware of the problem. This part is readily available in all dealerships and parts store inventories. It is my understanding through reading discussion on the internet that MINIhas extended the warranty in 2002 to 2005 minis up to 13 years and 100,000 miles. Mine is not covered and I incurred a cost of almost $1,300 for replacement of the defective parts. I have never in my 50 years of driving had a power steering failure until this incident. If I had been traveling at a higher rate of speed this power steering failure may have resulted in death or serious injury to myself or others. Since this is a fairly low volume vehicle the problem may not be as quickly noticed by your department as if it were a Ford Focus or Honda civic..I have great concern about this problem..

- Garrettsville, OH, USA

problem #461

Sep 222014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 118,000 miles
Loud whine from power steering pump.

- Leesburg, VA, USA

problem #460

Sep 162014


  • 145,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 MINICooper. When the vehicle made a right turn at 50 mph, the steering wheel seized. The contact had to use excessive force to get the steering wheel to straighten. The dealer stated that the steering pump needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 145,000.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #459

Sep 012014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 77,000 miles
Power steering pump failure. This is a known design defect of this model and year, however, MINIstates that my VIN is not covered (possibly because I purchased the vehicle while stationed with the army in germany). This is a dangerous situation and I am not happy with miniusa's response to date.

- Johnstown, PA, USA

problem #458

Aug 292014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 114,000 miles
At the beginning, the steering pump makes some noises and a few weeks later, my power steering completely went out, really heard to steer especially at the lower speed and at the corner.

- Indianapolis , IN, USA

problem #457

Aug 182014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 87,244 miles
Steering effort increased tremendously during low speed driving and at any speed during turning. Power steering appears to be inoperative.

- Bel Air, MD, USA

problem #456

Jul 292014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 42,637 miles
Was driving at 45mph and all of sudden could tell something was different with the steering. Slowed down and turned at the next intersection and it was like driving a tank. Could have been really bad if I had been driving faster.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #455

Apr 082014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 133,000 miles
Started out being an intermittent problem, where it would seem the power steering would shut off then come back on, making hard to judge if you could just relax to steer or not, now its more off than on. Called the MINIassistance number because I was told there was an extended warranty on this issue, was told there was but my vehicle didn't qualify for it, and the extended warranty was for vehicles 2002-2005, mines a 2005 and my VIN was not covered. Don't understand.

- Sabattus, ME, USA

problem #454

May 172014

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 120,167 miles
I have a 2005 MINICooper and just lost the power steering. A couple times recently it was hard to steer while parallel parking, but ok on the road. This morning it completely failed on the way to the highway. The wheel was very hard to turn and just managed to get it back to the house, will take it to the dealer on Monday. I see on the internet now that there has been a known issue with the steering pump since 2011 that I did not know about before. Why are owners not notified about this? I could have had a bad accident if the failure had been on the highway. Updated 11/24/2014

- Orr's Island, ME, USA

problem #453

May 082014


  • 128,000 miles
Was driving normally on 4/8/14, turned normally until I took a slight curve and steering wheel got very stiff & hard to turn from then on. Until now it remains very hard to drive.

- Asheboro, NC, USA

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