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2013 MINI Cooper Paceman Preview

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Marie-Laurence Paquin
Unique styling, versatility, increased ground clearance, and impressive powertrain selection make the new 2013 MINI Cooper Paceman a force to be reckoned with in the premium compact segment. In fact, BMW calls it “the world’s first sports activity coupe.”

The 2013 MINI Cooper Paceman starts at $26,800, while the Cooper Paceman All4 with AWD retails for $31,200. Topping the line is the John Cooper Works Paceman All4 at $39,600.

2013 MINI Cooper Paceman

Originally launched at the Paris Auto Show last fall, the 2013 MINI Cooper Paceman made an appearance at the Montreal Auto Show a few weeks ago. It becomes MINI's seventh model, and will soon go on sale across Canada.

Exterior design
This compact crossover is basically a three-door variant of the Countryman. Actually, both share the same platform. From a design standpoint, the Paceman looks like a tiny Range Rover Evoque. The sloping roofline reduces the size of the rear window, while the horizontal taillights separate this model from other MINIs. Up front, the black wheel arches and rounded headlights have become a staple of the British brand. With fog lights and a more muscular silhouette, the 2013 MINI Cooper Paceman has a strong, athletic presence and a whole lot of street cred.

Of course, MINI is all about customization. Here, buyers will have a choice of eight body colours, two roof colours, and six wheel designs in four different colours.

Cargo capacity
It goes without saying that cargo capacity is not the 2013 MINI Cooper Paceman's forte. If you plan a road trip, or just a weekend getaway, you'll have 330 litres of cargo room at your disposal.

Powertrains and fuel economy
The 2013 MINI Cooper Paceman offers a trio of 4-cylinder engines, starting with a naturally aspirated unit that produces 121 horsepower and 114 lb-ft of torque, with a top speed of 188 km/h. It also achieves 5.7L/100km on the highway and 7.4L/100km in the city, for an average of 6.6L/100km.

Next up, the Cooper S Paceman All4 adds all-wheel drive and a turbocharger that boosts output to 181 horsepower, along with 177 lb-ft of torque. Top speed rises to 205 km/h, while fuel consumption is rated at 6.4L/100km highway, 8.1L/100km city, and 7.3L/100km combined.

Finally, the John Cooper Works Paceman All4, which made its debut at the NAIAS in Detroit, will hit the market as early as next month. As the sportiest Paceman in the lineup, it cranks out 208 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque, good for a top speed of 226 km/h. Amazingly, fuel consumption is said to be identical to that of the Cooper S Paceman All4.

What they said
“The key to developing the MINI brand lies in growing the MINI family, while remaining true to the heritage that defines it -- extreme driving fun, pure go-kart feeling, and irresistible design,” said Harald Krueger, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG.

Closest competitors
Subaru XV Crosstrek, Fiat 500L, Nissan Juke

2013 MINI Cooper Paceman side view
Photo: MINI Cooper

Marie-Laurence Paquin
Marie-Laurence Paquin
Automotive expert