definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
46,554 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.

2007 Mini Cooper engine problems

engine problem

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2007 Mini Cooper Owner Comments (Page 2 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #42

Feb 082012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 52,000 miles


I was driving on the highway, I slowed down, and I heard clunking rock like noises. My car rolled to a stop. My mechanic has verified that the timing chain is broken, which is highly unusual and should never happen. The MINIcooper forums have many complaints about the same problem in 2007 MINICooper S models. I could have been killed. MINIhas not issued a recall, but they need to. Immediately.

- Apo, AE, USA

problem #41

Jan 022012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 28,050 miles
Cold start issues and eventual "check engine" triggered by defective high pressure fuel pump. Dealer replaced under warranty. Additional problem with excessive heat from engine causing warping of plastic hood scoop (3rd replacement).

- Parker, CO, USA

problem #40

May 092011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 61,241 miles
Engine made excessive rattling on cold start up. Took to BMW and they told me that the timing chain tensioner, rails, and chain had to be replaced. The dealership charged me $2,031.97. As I drove the car off the lot I noted that the engine did not feel nearly as smooth as before and was noisier. Brought the car in twice for them to fix. On the second trip to dealership, 7/18/11, they told me the water pump needed replaced. They charged me $980.04 though a typical charge of for this job was $1315.51. The car to this day at >70,000 still does not feel smooth and continues to sound loud. Obviously this is due to the "band aid fix" approach for the timing chain. I printed out all the complaints from NHTSA database regarding the noisey cold start of 2007 MINICooper S due to timing chain defect, 33 out of 110 (now 34). This is a pattern of defective engineering and not a randon quality problem that deserves a recall. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6)

- Canton, GA, USA

problem #39

May 232011


  • 33,000 miles


The contact owns 2007 MINICooper. The contact was driving 30 mph when the vehicle started to overheat. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer where the dealer advised the contact that the vehicle needed anti-freeze. The dealer added anti-freeze to the vehicle but the failure recurred shortly thereafter. The vehicle was taken back to the dealer numerous times before it was found that the thermostat was the cause of the failure. The thermostat was replaced. The failure mileage was 33,000.

- Greenville, SC, USA

problem #38

Oct 012007

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 5,800 miles
Vehicle produces loud metallic sounds from the left side of the engine on cold start. MINIusa has repeatedly stated this is okay, however now at 25000 miles the noise is constant and loud. Reading data from other MINIowners this problem is now extremely common on all MINIcoopers with the 1.6L produced after 2007. MINIhas quietly replaced numerous belt tensioners to fix this problem but refuses to admit this is a large issue over the entire fleet of vehicles. Issue results in a $3-4K labor bill to repair.

- Honolulu, HI, USA

problem #37

Apr 112011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 65,394 miles
Turbo oil supply line from engine to turbo leaking excessive oil requiring replacement. Poor engineering design of compression fitting led to premature failure. Continued operation of vehicle with this condition would result in catastrophic engine and or engine turbo failure.

- Mystic, CT, USA

problem #36

Jan 012012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 74,000 miles


While driving in heavy traffic following extended highway speed, stopped at traffic light and engine died with no warning and would not restart. Car had to be towed a considerable distance to original dealership. Learned that the vacuum pump seized / locked up, causing a chain reaction of catastrophic results that totally destroyed engine. Car needs complete new engine at 74,000 miles (out of warranty)and MINIusa attitude is that such engine failure is not their responsibility even though this particular MINIwas impeccably maintained beyond MINIservcie requirements, but to no avail as engine blew at a very young 74,000 miles of age and there are repeated instances of same engine failure on internet BMW/MINIblogs. Note: This catastrophic damage follows last year's large out of warranty expense of replacing the entire electronic steering lock system as vehicle could not be driven safely and again MINIfelt no responsibility for equipment failure even though the problem was subsequently acknowledged by the fact that electronic steering lock is no longer installed in new MINIcoopers!

- White Stone, VA, USA

problem #35

Dec 252010


  • 40,000 miles
As a background, on November 25, 2011, I delivered the car, a 2007 MINICooper S to a MINIdealership where I always have it serviced. The reason I brought it in for service was due to the overheating light and engine light being triggered while driving. When I picked up the car, the service advisor assured me that it was in complete working order and the repairs made the car as good as new. On that November 25th, visit, I had paid $1,817.40 for a new water pump, thermostat, spark plugs, and water pipe replacement despite the fact they are commonly 100,000-mile services. My car has less than 41,000 miles. 10 days after my car was serviced, the same overheating light and engine light came on again. In response to this repeated issue, on December 11, 2011, I spoke with the service advisor who told me to bring the vehicle back to the MINIdealership. During this second visit, I brought the vehicle to the MINIdealership in order to attempt to resolve the overheating issue for a second time. During this second visit, the MINIdealership replaced the fuel pump and flushed the radiator several times, again, in an attempt to solve the overheating issue. When I picked up the car, the service consultant assured me that it was in complete working order and the repairs made the car as good as new. This was the second time that I have been assured that this car was in proper working order. Now, for the third time in the past 24 days, the overheating light and engine light has came on again while I was driving on December 18, 2011. Frustrated, at the least, I promptly returned the car for further service by your dealership. I was shocked when the service advisor contacted me on December 21, 2011 to inform me that an engine replacement was required. The car has fewer than 41,000 miles and has only ever been serviced by licensed MINIdealerships.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #34

Dec 192011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 69,540 miles
I have had previous issues with the panoramic sunroof, I had to get it replaced. Then I had issues with the chain and chain tensioner and had to get that replaced too. Now the steering has failed on me, I can't start the car or even move the steering wheel. My steering is locked now; I had the car running, everything seemed to run fine and the steering worked fine. Once I shut the car off I couldn't start the car back up and my steering locked up. I had to get my car towed home. I wish BMW would do some kind of a recall on this car so we wouldn't have to pay so much money out of our own pockets!

- Plain City, OH, USA

problem #33

Nov 022011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 37,720 miles
The engine began to make a large rattling noise and the check engine light eventually came on. I stopped the car and checked the oil to see if it was low and discovered that I was not able to get the dip stick back in. At this point I called a tow truck and took it to a local mechanic because there isn't a MINIdealer within 100 miles of my location. Turns out it was the timing chain tensioner which is a common problem for the Cooper S and MINIhas released three fixes and claim the latest tsb will fix the problem. My car has less than 40,000 miles and I had to spend $1,700 dollars for a $26 dollar part that was faulty to begin with. MINIknew they had a problem and tried to fix it but failed on two separate occasions there's no telling how long this new fix will hold up. Not to mention my car is still louder than it use to be before the problem and it sounds like a diesel engine at idle. This noise doesn't give me confidence that the latest fix will last and MINIneeds to seriously take a look at the problem and send out a recall before the timing chains start causing life threatening problems.

- Panama City Beach, FL, USA

problem #32

Nov 262011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 49,025 miles


I had this car serviced about 4 times during the 4 yr warranty period. Just after the warranty period, the car was checked for brake job and I was informed that the water pump leaks. I think the coolant provable was leaking prior to expiration of warranty but I was not informed. I bought 3 cars in 2007 (Honda and Lexus) and none of them has this issue. 1. engine coolant leaks. Replace water pump. 2. engine hood latch won't open. Failed remote latch. The MINICooper estimate will cost me $800 to replace the water pump. I also overheard from one of the MINIowner last sat, 26nov2011 during my visit to the dealer that he also has the same issue leaky water pump.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #31

Nov 122011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 30,791 miles
After a couple days of hearing some rattling under the hood after cold starts, my engine light came on. I took it to the dealer and the mechanic said that a faulty tensioner had caused the timing chain to stretch out excessively and if it's not fixed, my engine could seize up at any time.. it's a $2,500 repair. This is ridiculous, considering the car is only 4 years old and has just 30,000 miles on it. I did some research and found that many many owners of my same year, make and model are reporting the exact same problem. It is a known issue, yet MINIis doing nothing about it. I called MINIcooper to ask about it and they only grudgingly took my complaint. They said they will not do a recall unless the federal government demands it, so I'm asking you to do so. I think this is a serious safety issue (who knows when the engine could seize up) and it seems to be so widely reported, I can't believe MINIis ignoring it. I would think this is about to be a very serious problem, considering other 2007's are just starting to have these problems. Please investigate and make MINIdo the right thing.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #30

Nov 102011


  • 52,000 miles
The contact owns a 2007 MINICooper S. the contact stated that there was an extremely abnormal odor that entered the cabin of the vehicle, similar to eggs. The vehicle was maneuvered off the roadway and upon further inspection, he found a small fire had erupted under the hood. The fire department was not called. The contact called the manufacturer and filed a complaint. The manufacturer suggested taking the vehicle to the dealer for inspection and possible repairs. The failure mileage was 52,000. The VIN was not available.

- Elizabethville, PA, USA

problem #29

Oct 212011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 47,000 miles
Strange engine knocking/rubbing noise come from the engine compartment. It appeared to be the timing chain failure. The car was bought to the dealer twice first time they replaced the timing chain tensioner and this time they replace the timing chain.

- San Jose, CA, USA

problem #28

Oct 022011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 76,112 miles
Oil return line exiting turbocharger leaks engine oil, which drips directly onto hot engine exhaust downpipe, this leads to smoke from the engine bay and will eventually cause a fire if not remedied promptly. BMW should quickly recall and repair this design defect before a lot of private property goes up in flames.

- Winter Park, FL, USA

problem #27

Oct 122011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 29,000 miles
As I approached the street on where I live, the car started to severely shake and jerk, as if power was not going to the engine. I was able to park it on my driveway, but the next morning, the car had to be towed to the dealer because it would not start. When the car arrived at the dealer after being towed in, the car could not be jump-started, even after several attempts. Two weeks prior, I had brought my car in for service because the check engine light came on. They replaced the timing chain and found several misfire faults, which were supposedly corrected. The cylinder head was removed and disassembled and found to have carbon build up. The intake valves and exhaust valves were cleaned. Since the incident, the car is still at the dealer. An extended road test is scheduled to be performed within these next few days. No word on what has caused the car's engine to die.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #26

Oct 122011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 27,000 miles
My wife and I both noticed a burning smell inside our 2007 MINICooper S last week while traveling on an expressway in either Tennessee or North Carolina on vacation. I opened my window for 3-4 minutes, suspecting the smell might be getting into the car from a pickup truck running approximately 40-50 yards ahead of us. There was no sign of smoke or fire around the pick-up truck. This smell happened very briefly twice on the same day; I opened my window for a few minutes in both cases, and the burning smell did not return after that. We drove 2200 miles in 9 days and did not have any problems with the car.

- West Olive, MI, USA

problem #25

Sep 072011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 35,464 miles
I almost had a timing chain/tensioner failure. Took my '07 mcs into the MINIdealer for its 4 year service. They found that the 'timing chain tensioner is weak and needs to be replaced' or 'tensioner worn and causing excessive chain slack and chain noise'. I bought my MINInew, it now has 35464 miles and this should fall into the category as 'unusual'. this should not be a part that wears out or suffers failure with so few miles. As I checked out this failure on the web I quickly found out that this is not unusual but is happening quite frequently. I missed this being covered under the warranty by 2 weeks. My lose? maybe; maybe not, at least I did not destroy the engine. According to the service department paperwork they replaced the chain tensioner with an updated 551 tensioner, P/N: 11 31 7 607 551, @ $26.21 ($146 for installation). It appears that MINIBMW knows about the problem and redesigned the part to prevent problems in the future, hopefully. If this is true why don't they recall the cars and just take care of it. Had I had the bad luck of destroying the engine my opinion on all their products would have drastically changed. I also own a '11 BMW 335xi.

- Westminster, CO, USA

problem #24

Apr 202011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 44,500 miles
The heater core is placed next to the accelerator pedal in the foot well. The car design has the heater core on all the time. The only insulation between the heater core and the foot on the accelerator pedal is a plastic cover which becomes too hot to touch.

- Waterbury, CT, USA

problem #23

Aug 282011

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
My MINIcooper spontaneous caught on fire. Thursday 8/25/11 before all this happen, I took the car in for service. I stated to the service advisor([xxx]) the car was not driving right and I'm sure some services needs to be looked at (oil change etc....). my service tech ([xxx] vista MINIcoconut creek) puts the key into the card reader nope nothing showed up you good to go I exit with some doubt on my face never thinking twice, could be my mind playing car games. I'm really admit about funny noises, and since the dealer isn't far from my job. I'd just stop on by for a check up. I do have extended warranty service. Saturday 8/27/11 (10:30P) car sitting from a short drive to have dinner. Came home (10pm) parked the and didn't hear or notice anything. I usually take a quick walk around the car. Sunday 8/28/11 (4:00P) police came knocking " are you the owner of a black MINIcooper " your car was on fire and the plantation fire dept are in the process of putting out the fire/flames. As I walk out the shock of my car burning. After speaking with the firemen. He couldn't pin point where the fire started and the cause unknown but he said when they started to hose it down it looked as if the fire was coming from the driver side engine compartment another fire dept guy said from the looks of this incident, what's seems to cause this was electrical malfunction. Flames were shooting 8'ft in the air. The car is damaged and not repairable, there's no engine there's nothing left besides the some ashe, melted metal, there's no windshield, the headliner is completely gone, side glass are blown out. All I can think about is my baby daughter in the car while I was driving. BMW you have caused some damage, leaving me second guess you integrity of your craftsmanship/flagship auto. Someone please contact me about this situation. Updated09/07/11 [xxx] updated 2/23/12

- Sunrise, FL, USA

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