Seems as though we have had a recent rush on questions and problems related to the various transmissions that have been used in the MINI Cooper since it’s introduction in 2001 (we have a solution, see below). Most people had heard about the update of the internal gears in the popular 6 speed manual transmission as used in the MCS. And we are finally hearing from some people actually trying to take advantage of the improved ratio by simply swapping a late tranny for the early one. From all reports the mechanical swap is not a difficult one and the results reported from more than one person can be quoted as ‘stunning’! But there is a drawback!
In return for all that greatly improved old fashion acceleration you will have to give up a modern sought after feature: cruise control. While not specific to the transmission upgrade, the ECU for the MCS for ’05/’06 models and the only feature lost in this trans swap is the cruise control. Those that we spoke to said it was the only issue and was a small price to pay for the improved performance.
On a negative front , we have also now heard from several people who are having problems with their automatic transmission as found in the very early MC & MCS. These CVT were innovative when introduced and engineered to use the best torque and HP from the MINI engine to provide smooth and effortless movement. But reliability was is biggest issue and while the tranny was replaced a few years later with a more convention automatic with their heavy torque converter, etc, the upgrade was proof that even the factory was convinced that the CVT could be used for the long-term. The real bad news that as the factory forecasts come true with CVT failures (most of them “out of warranty”- the current owner is faced with the reality that the ONLY solution is a newly rebuilt CVT transmission. I would thus advise anyone considering a MINI Cooper automatic to stay away from the CVT version!
However, if you have already taken the plunge and have found yourself in need of a new transmission for your Mini Cooper you are in luck. Mini Mania is now offering a Re-manufactured CVT Automatic Transmission for 2002-2008 Mini Coopers at less than half the cost of replacing with a brand new CVT transmission. In addition, the transmissions come with a 12 month/12,000 mile limited warranty. There are specific steps taken to ensure the quality of these transmissions.
* Transmissions are completely disassembled
* Cases are inspected & cleaned
* Gears, bearings, pulleys & valve body are thoroughly inspected & replaced as needed
* Belts, seals & gaskets are replaced on all transmissions regardless of mileage
* Transmissions are then carefully re-assembled in a consistent manner
Check out the Rebuilt Mini Cooper Automatic Transmission.