MINI Clubman Review

With bug-eyed headlights, double boot doors and a retro interior, the Mini Clubman is a family car with character

Strengths & weaknesses

  • More character than most family hatchbacks
  • Sporty to drive
  • Economical petrol engines
  • Bumpy ride on uneven roads
  • Restricted rear visibility
  • Limited choice of engines
MINI Clubman prices from £9,990.
Finance from £210.40 / month.

Mini’s not known for dull design and its Clubman is pitched at families who want some character from their car. Remove the badges from a Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus, Vauxhall Astra or Seat Leon, and you might be hard-pushed to identify them.

That’s never going to be a problem with the Clubman, thanks to the bug-eyed headights and downturned grille – both of which were refreshed in 2019, along with the addition of three new colours – plus the two outward-opening boot doors at the back. Some love it, some hate it, but there’s no mistaking it.

The Clubman’s distinctiveness doesn’t stop there: the interior continues with retro Mini trademarks, including the large circular display in the middle of the dashboard and chrome toggle switches. It might not have the high-tech feel of the latest Mercedes A-Class or the precise quality of the Audi A3, but it’s got charm.

It’s so similar to the standard Mini Hatchback that anyone upgrading to the car might feel short-changed. The Clubman is a proper family car, though. The design disguises an extra 73mm in width and almost half a metre in length over the Hatchback.

There’s no mistaking the extra space inside. It’s a a car fit to carry five adults, with a 360-litre boot that matches the Audi A3 and Volkswagen Golf that’s just big enough for a couple of suitcases or a bulky buggy but some way off the 590 litres in a Skoda Octavia. There are two rear passenger doors, unlike the impractical single door in the previous-generation Clubman.

The double boot doors open sideways, so you don’t need to reach up to close them. You’ll need to park a reasonable distance away from walls to avoid clonking the paintwork, for example. They can be opened in turn by pressing a button on the keyfob but the button is far too easily pressed in a pocket or handbag. Owners quickly learn to hold the fob gently until out of range to avoid returning to their car with the boot doors wide open

Flick the Clubman’s gimmicky glowing start button and you’ll find plenty more character. It’s one of the sportier family cars that you can buy, with sharp, responsive steering which only requires a small twist to send the car into a different direction. Combined with excellent stability (it’s rarely bumped off course by potholes and doesn’t lean much in corners), the Clubman is nimble and fun to drive.

The petrol engines are well-suited to the car and economical - even the least-powerful Cooper model zips along when revved, with a barking note from the exhaust.

The downside to the car’s sportiness is a bumpy ride over uneven roads, which is most noticeable in the back. The Ford Focus and BMW 1 Series offer a better combination of comfort and sportiness. Alternatively, pick the Mercedes A-Class, Audi A3, Volkswagen Golf or Hyundai i30 if a smooth ride is most important.

For a car that’s in demand, even the basic Mini Clubman Cooper comes well-equipped with sat-nav, air conditioning, Bluetooth for wirelessly connecting your phone and mood lighting as standard. As ever, Mini sells equipment packs to upgrade the car with brighter LED headlights, part-leather seats, parking sensors and larger alloy wheels.

Early Clubmans came with three sets of Isofix mounts as standard, with a pair in the back and one in the front for securely mounting child seats. The front seat mount is optional in more recent models. A four star (out of five) safety rating from the independent Euro NCAP organisation

If you’re sold on the Mini’s character, then it’s probably the family car for you. In fact, the toughest competition on this front probably comes from the Mini Countryman crossover, which combines the Clubman’s mechanical parts with a higher driving position, offering some of the sportiness with extra practicality.


Key facts

Warranty 3 years / unlimited mileage
Boot size 360-1,250 litres
Width 1800mm
Length 4253mm
Height 1441mm
Tax £210 to £530 in first year, £145 thereafter

Best MINI Clubman for...

Best for Economy – Mini Clubman Cooper D

As is usually the case in model ranges, the diesel version of the Clubman is the most economical, managing up to 67.3mpg and CO2 emissions as low as 111g/km.

Best for Families – Mini Clubman Cooper

With an official fuel consumption figure in excess of 50mpg, pretty low CO2 emissions and the most comfortable suspension set-up, this is the best Clubman package for families.

Best for Performance – Best for performance: Mini Clubman John Cooper Works

The John Cooper Works is especially performance-oriented, with power increased by almost a third to 306hp, compared to the previous generation, which reduced its 0-62mph time to 4.9 seconds.


  • November 2015 Mini Clubman goes on sale in UK

  • January 2016 ALL4 four-wheel-drive Clubman launched.

  • March 2016 Mini Clubman One D added to range.

  • April 2017 Black Pack special edition launched.

  • July 2018 Petrol engines revised for greater efficiency.

  • August 2018 Clubman City version, aimed at business drivers, added to range.

  • September 2019 Revised versions, with design changes and performance upgrade to John Cooper Works variant, go on sale.

Understanding MINI Clubman names

Trim Cooper

There are four trim levels – Cooper, Cooper D, Cooper S, John Cooper Works – that offer different levels of equipment, with the better equipped cars costing more.

Gearbox Steptronic

The Mini Clubman is available with either six-speed manual gearbox or a seven-speed auto, called Steptronic.

MINI Clubman Engines

Petrol Cooper, Cooper S, John Cooper Works Diesel: One D, Cooper D

The Clubman has five engine variants: three petrol and two diesel.

The entry-level petrol unit is found in the Cooper, a 1.5-litre, three-cylinder unit that offers a good blend of 50+mpg and a 0-62mph time of under 10 seconds, while CO2 emissions are between 120 and 129g/km (depending on wheel size and specification). It’s not fast, but it’s smooth and easy to use, coping with all kinds of driving – including motorway runs – with ease.

The Cooper S is a little sportier, its 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine shaving almost two seconds off the 0-62mph sprint compared to the Cooper, with the resulting fuel economy penalty – although it is possible to get over 50mpg, officially, depending on the spec of the car. It feels nippier and the engine sound does sound more fun.

The John Cooper Works performance version has had a major power boost for this generation of the Clubman, up by 32% to 306PS. This takes it into true hot hatch territory, with a 0-62mph time of 4.9 seconds. It does feel quick, placing it alongside the Ford Focus ST and Volkswagen Golf GTI.

The One D diesel, introduced in 2016 is a three-cylinder 1.5-litre diesel that offered impressive fuel economy under the old testing regime, but is unlikely to match it in real-life driving. It was withdrawn from the range in 2018.

Most diesels are the 2.0-litre 150PS units that still manage a fuel economy figure in excess of 60mpg, and CO2 emissions of under 120g/km, making this the economy choice.



Fuel economy


Acceleration (0-62mph)

Top speed







Cooper S






John Cooper Works






Cooper D






One D


74.3mpg (NEDC)




MINI Clubman Trims

Classic, Sport, Exclusive

The new Clubman offers three trim levels.

The basic Classic pack has standard features that include alloy wheels, navigation on a 6.5” display, Real Time Traffic Information (RTTI) and Apple CarPlay, automatic lights and wipers, an interior lights package and the Mini Excitement pack that includes logo projection, illuminated door handles and LED mood light. Mini Connected Services are also standard, as well as Intelligent Emergency Call (E-Call) and Bluetooth.

The Sport style adds a John Cooper Works Sports steering wheel, John Cooper Works sports seats and 17” alloy wheels as standard. Buyers who want more personalisation can upgrade to a full leather John Cooper Works sport seat or a leather seat and 19” alloys on Cooper S models.

Exclusive offers customers a more luxurious look, thanks to 17” alloys, leather steering wheel and leather sports seats as standard.

MINI Clubman Reliability and warranty

Mini owners rate the brand’s reliability. It’s ranked as the tenth best manufacturer out of 26 in this year’s Auto Express Driver Power customer satisfaction survey. The most common problems tended to be less critical, such as paintwork and interior trim issues.

The three-year warranty is only average in length, but there’s no mileage limit, so there’s no risk of your coverage being cut short if you regularly cover long-distances.

Used MINI Clubman

Finding your ideal Clubman can take a bit of work because the car’s specification isn’t badged clearly as with other cars. For example, an entry-level Clubman One D with added equipment packs could be more luxurious than the more expensive Cooper S.

Even without any added extras, the petrol-powered Mini Cooper is an excellent choice, with reasonably rapid acceleration and a good standard specification, including sat-nav and mood lighting (but no parking sensors). Prices for these cars have dropped below £15,000 for a 2016 model, with representative finance quotes from around £235.

Given the limited rear visibility, parking sensors are useful, so it’s worth looking for a car that has them fitted as an optional extra. This includes models that have been upgraded with the popular Chili Pack, which includes part-leather seats that are heated in the front, climate control, larger alloy wheels and brighter headlights, which give the car a more upmarket touch.

As a result, cars fitted typically sell for £1,000 or more than one without, so you will need to budget more if that’s what you’re looking for.

The automatic gearbox was a popular choice for new Mini Clubman buyers and so there’s an excellent choice of these models on the used car market. Few buyers opted for the four-wheel drive ALL4 version, though, so it may be more difficult to find one in your perfect specification.

Special edition Black Pack cars aren’t worth paying more for, as the differences are mainly cosmetic, with black alloy wheels, black bonnet stripes and glossy black piano sections inside. These are all options on the rest of the range, so aren’t exclusive to the car.