really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
80,550 miles
Total Complaints:
2 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replacement of steering pump system (2 reports)
2006 Mini Cooper S steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Mini Cooper S Owner Comments

problem #2

Oct 142016

Cooper S

  • Manual transmission
  • 57,085 miles


I purchased this Mini Cooper S on March 16, 2016 and it had 47,282 miles on it. I also bought a limited 90 day warranty offered by Buddy's Auto Sales of Springfield, MO. I trailered the car to Phoenix where my son was to attend a motorcycle mechanic school in October. On October 07, 2016 we unloaded it from the trailer and parked it at a hotel. The next morning my son (a certified mechanic) went outside to check on the car and the brake light was on. Assuming someone was in the car, he ran to it and found that it was full of smoke and smelled of melting wires/metal. He got a pair of pliers from the hotel and unhooked the battery before the car could burn itself to the ground. As soon as we could get a dealership on the phone, we had it towed there. They informed me that there was a large recall on BMW power steering pumps and they looked it up to see if mine would be covered. It wasn't. It cost $3,823.22 to get the car back and they had the vehicle until October 14, 2016, causing me to miss my flight home. If this is a wide-spread problem, why wasn't my Mini covered?

- Maryann N., Leavenworth, KS, US

problem #1

Jan 052014

Cooper S 1.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,000 miles

I really loved my 2006 MINI Copper S despite how bad she was to me.

Driving it always made you forgot how bad the relationship was (like an abusive spouse). I would forgive her and move on...and then her tirade. But time and time again, I'd pay the bill and hope for better days only to leave black, blue and smiling. Her name was Zoe, it meant "love of life' because that's how she made me feel whenever I was with her.

Cool month of January, 2014 - I was driving home one day and the lights on the dash danced like Christmas lights. The steering locked up and I couldn't turn the car. I was with my daughter and we had just navigated through come very curvy roads on the way home. If this had happened 2 minutes before, we would have been goners found nose first in one of the ditches.

The dealership wanted to charge us $2200+tax! No consoling words, no apologies, that's just the cost of driving a 'fine European PIECE OF TRASH'. But did I learn my lesson? No.. I looked around and found a mechanic (not a tree shade operation but someone well known in our city and who specialized in other "Fine European automobiles". We thanked him profusely after paying him "only" $1300". It was after Christmas after all so we were thankful for only charging us an arm and allowing us to keep the leg. I should mention that the very expensive extended warranty we purchased had just run out 3 months/2500 miles prior.

Many months later I was driving around loving on Zoe. I started thinking of how abusive she's been to us and then it just hit me that she'll always do it again. Her miles were up to 115,000 at that point and I knew she was giving me the evil eye ready to strike if I didn't do the dishes correctly or said something that she didn't agree with. At the same time, I kept hearing from my friends how good their Japanese cars were to them. It was painful but we decided to sell her. My daughter cried for days. My eyes told me I had more than average allergies that day too. I sold it to a private party. I let them know ALL the issues I had with her (I keep detailed records of all the abuse). I discounted the car pretty heavily from it's KBB and gave the grinning new owner the set of keys.

...2 weeks later, she called me. Zoe had decided to blow a gasket and pout under a cloud of smoke (while driving on the freeway). Zoe wanted a cooling system and while she was shopping, she decided to add an alternator to the shopping cart. What Zoe wanted, Zoe got. I promised the new owner I had no such experience of those particular issues (I had the receipts of everything we had ever given Zoe).

Zoe was always beautiful. She made you forgot life's daily grind and the day to day. But she was expensive (maintenance) and demanded even more expensive 'gifts' from more frequently than anyone I've ever been with. If she didn't get what she wanted, unlike other cars with issues who may still go but just murmur, she would just sit there and refuse to do anything.

I happily drive my Japanese Acura TSX now. She's polite, doesn't murmur or talk back, just extremely pleasant. She's asks that I take her to good food once in a while (premium gas like all fine automobiles) and the occasional required pampering and maintenance but she's GREAT to me.

I'm very happy with my Atsuko (her name means "warm child") and I hope she's with me forever but I have to admit... I always do a double take when I see a Zoe pass us by...

- tatarica762, Nashville, TN, US

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