The great thing about a cold air intake system for the MINI Cooper is that many MINI Cooper S owners are interested in further improving performance on this very sporty high performance car. A well designed cold air intake system is the best start at doing just that.
What is a cold air intake system? Internal combustion MINI Cooper engines require air and fuel to burn. Horsepower is dependent on how efficient the air intake system can be. The average engine will often use more than 15,000 gallons of air for every gallon of fuel. A supercharged MINI Cooper S will typically use 20% more air than a normally aspirated engine of any type! It is a well establish fact that the colder the air the more dense (compact) it is. That is; cold air holds more oxygen per cubic foot. Thus, the more oxygen in the intake “charge” will yield more power in each combustion cycle. You will be getting more horsepower with at least as much if not better fuel economy.
The MINI Cooper S gets its air intake through two paths. A air flow duct from the grille front area provides direct air flow to the lower portion of the stock air intake box. The air flows into the rear of the air box from air flow is also through the drivers side (left side) cowl vent. It is also common practice enlarge this inlet area to allow more pressurized air flow to the air filter enclosure. And this also solves part of the restriction problem.
Air filter manufacturers and air intake box suppliers all talk about the surface area of the air filter as a measure of performance. They take for granted that the physical air filter enclosure will deliver enough air to the air filter to allow it to do its job without undue restriction of air flow. In the MINI Cooper S, the location of the stock air filter which is behind the engine means it is not easy to get cold air to the air filter. Space is also limited for the air filter as it is cramped and the engine bay heat is very high because the air filter is located very near and above the exhaust system.
The MINI MANIA designed ‘ULTRIK’ Cold Air Intake System for the MINI Cooper S is the only air intake system on the market that optimizes the air delivered to the Air filter. When installing the best air filter in the world it will do you no good if you enclose the air filter in a metal case that is close to the air filter that airflow is not optimized. Many tests have shown that all air filter elements in addition to conical air filters are sensitive to the free-air area surrounding the air filter element. An inadequate open area around the air filter creates an air restriction in and of itself that inhibits airflow through the filter element. The result is less improvement over the stock configuration. Thus, a large air filter in a small box will have an effect opposite what is desired.
The MINI Cooper S application is particularly difficult as under hood space is very limited. Mini Mani carefully engineered our Cold Air Intake System enclosure to ensure an enclosure larger than stock, and larger than other available air filter systems in order to optimize air intake tract performance. The ULTRIK Cold Air Intake System is the not only the largest in the industry but also makes use of the closing of the hood to complete the seal to the top of the box, thus assuring maximum free air around the air filter. Installing the best air filter does no good unless you get plenty of unrestricted air around it. The ‘cold air system’ from other suppliers have an average air capacity of 290 cubic inches. The Ultrik cold air intake system for the MINI Cooper S has the largest in the industry capacity of 378 cu. inches! This is a 30% increase is air volume available to the air filter element and intake system tract, without restriction! No wonder it works so well!