hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 5
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
65,592 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.

2009 Mini Cooper engine problems

engine problem

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2009 Mini Cooper Owner Comments (Page 5 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #14

Mar 042013


  • 49,000 miles


The contact owns a 2009 MINICooper S. the contact stated that while parked, the engine fan failed to deactivate. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted and informed the contact that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 12V008000 (engine and engine cooling). The approximate failure mileage was 49,000.

- Boerne, TX, USA

problem #13

Dec 212012


  • 75,000 miles
The contact owns a 2009 MINICooper S. the contact stated that she noticed the engine had a leak. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection and they stated the water pump and the turbo charger needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified. The failure mileage was 75,000.

- Cape Coral, FL, USA

problem #12

Feb 192013


  • 29,000 miles
The timing tensioner on my MINICooper S backed out, resulting in a massive oil loss while at highway speeds. This is apparently a known issue by MINIbut no known recall has been issued at this point.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #11

Dec 152012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 63,963 miles


12/14/12: I drove home from work. I had no problems driving, but heard a bit of a cold start knock. 12/15/12: Car didn't start in the morning. I immediately got the car towed to herb chambers in boston, where I had exclusively taken it to every maintenance check-up and issue I had since I purchased it new at the same location, even after my warranty had expired. 12/16/12: Herb chambers performed a diagnosis for $135, and said that the timing chain was broken, which would cost $2,500 to fix. However, they also said that other engine parts may be broken, but they wouldn't know until they started working on the timing chain. As you can see, I was not happy at all with this inconclusive diagnosis. Do I pay $2,500 for them to then tell me it actually needs a new engine for close to $10,000, or do I tow it elsewhere? 12/17/12: Towed car to german performance service for a more complete diagnosis, which showed that the timing chain and tensioner were broken, as well as most valves and other engine parts. We conclude that it is cheaper to replace the entire engine ($3,213 + $1,980 of labor = $5,193) than to fix everything individually, which would be more labor intensive. 12/21/12: I contacted MINIusa to inform them about my situation and how unpleased I was with herb chamber's extremely vague diagnosis, as well as MINIs major timing chain flaw. MINIusa completely ignored my request for the sole reason that I took my car to a 3rd party mechanic. They said that if I had stayed at the dealer (even though they gave me an incomplete diagnosis), that they may have helped me out. 12/30/12: I contacted herb chambers boston with the same concerns. They understood my points, but said that unfortunately they cannot force the manufacturer to do anything they do not want to do. As a small gesture, they did give me back what they charged me for their initial diagnosis ($135).

- Waltham, MA, USA

problem #10

Dec 232012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 62,100 miles
Vehicle was taken to dealership in Feb 2012 for a rattling noise. Service center at braman miami said that they could not duplicate the noise, so it was assumed they found nothing wrong with the vehicle. Prior to this, the vehicle had been in the shop 2-3 times due engine malfunction light, rough idle at cold start and loss of turbo power due to leakage in turbo oil feed lines. This was repaired in early 2012/late 2011. In December of 2012, while driving the rattling noise of the complaint in Feb 2012 intensified and oil light illuminated while driving. Car was pulled over to safe location. Once car was stopped, the engine malfunction light also illuminated. Driver checked oil level, which appeared low but within the marks on the dipstick. Oil splatter was observed on the hood and on engine. Rubber gasket feeding to engine was observed to be displaced where oil appeared to have leaked out. Vehicle was towed to braman miami. Service department reported that failure was caused by timing chain/tensioner issue. Service dept is charging 17K usd for repairs as it is not found to be under the scope of warranty of previous repairs to the turbo oil feed lines. MINIhas been contacted to see if any relief can be provided as this seems to be a common issue with these vehicles.

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #9

Jan 062012


  • 81,000 miles
Turbo oil lines leaking oil. No check engine light has being activated.

- Riverview, FL, USA

problem #8

Nov 052012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 53,328 miles


Driving vehicle heard some engine noise and observed red oil indicator came on. Pulled over and checked oil level, appeared to be low.. I immediately put in two quarts of oil only to see it all seep out and through both front wheel wells. Appeared to be an issue with the timing chain tensioner.

- Sherrill, NY, USA

problem #7

Oct 122012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 72,120 miles
I was traveling on NJ turnpike and my vehicle blew up. Catastrophic engine failure. Water pump also broke.

- Pitman, NJ, USA

problem #6

Sep 292012


  • 52,000 miles
The timing tensioner on my MINICooper S backed out, resulting in a massive oil loss while at highway speeds. This is apparently a known issue by MINIbut no known recall has been issued at this point.

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #5

Sep 272012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 54,385 miles
During my commute to work on 9/27/12, my car completely died while I was driving in the middle lane of the freeway. The car was towed to a garage, where it was found to be leaking an excessive amount of oil. During inspection, it was assessed that the timing chain "jumped" and caused a catastrophic engine failure. At the time of this incident the car had 54K miles on it and there were absolutely no warning signs prior to the failure (I.e. leaking oil, engine rattle, etc...). furthermore, since I purchased the car in February 2012, I have performed regular maintenance on this car (new brakes, tires, alignment, regular synthetic oil changes) to ensure it stays in good driving condition. Apparently, this has been a frequently reported issue with MINICooper and the problem could have easily resulted in a fatal car accident while I was driving on the freeway! the estimated repair cost (with labor) for this failure is approx 10K!!! MINIshould be held responsible for this faulty craftsmanship. A 3 yr car with 54K miles should absolutely not need to have a new engine replaced!!!

- Cranston, RI, USA

problem #4

Aug 152012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 68,500 miles


Water pump for turbocharger replaced in may (recall) and turbocharger warranty extended via MINIof America letter. Turbocharger failed in August, but MINIof austin blamed failure on lack of oil changes. All oil changes performed by that dealership whenever the car told us it was due. Crappy response from MINIof America as well.

- Lago Vista, TX, USA

problem #3

Aug 102012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 43,709 miles
Purchased used vehicle in June 2012. On todays date, upon cold start vehicle began making knocking noises as if lifters were involved. As car warmed up noise became less apparent, but prompted me to take to local mechanic. Mechanic advised that timing chain needs adjusting/replacing and needs to go to dealer (an hour travel). Upon perusing web info on vehicle and year, this issue appears to be a prevalent mafunction in this vehicle causing major engine failure.

- Clewiston, FL, USA

problem #2

Jul 252012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 34,000 miles
On July 25th, aprox 9:00pm. My daughter (driver) have just arrived from college internship and arrived boyfriend family home (12-15mi trip). Upon turning off the engine and getting out of the car she smell burnt and saw sparks and fire through the car front grill. Boyfriend came and open the hood and noticed the fire. The boyfriend's father came and used dry chemical extinguisher to put fire out. Report was made to MINICooper. I came later and notice several wires burnt. The car was towed (7/25, 7/26 early morning) and is today (8/7/2012) at montgomery county MINICooper rockville, md, awaiting inspection by BMW engineering. The car still pending repair. I took pictures last Saturday (8/4). These pictures are available upon request.

- Olney, MD, USA

problem #1

May 162012

Cooper 4-cyl

  • 57,120 miles
Timing belt failure due to restrictor belt defect.

- Davis, CA, USA

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