Driving MINI: A Small Car in an Oversized World

I don’t really know why I wanted a MINI Cooper. It’s not big (obviously) and it doesn’t have a whole lot of room, but it is just so cool. First of all, they look great. You recognize them immediately. They just look like little racecars with their bonnet stripes and roof colors. Mine’s blue and it has a white top and mirrors – named Alice (Alice Cooper, get it?). You get to pick the colors and there is so much customizing involved, I felt like I built the car myself by the time I was done choosing options.

For the price, I’m sure I could have gotten a lot more car. But it is fun to drive, so I don’t really care. It is really hard to explain without using words like fun and awesome. It drives like no other car I’ve ever been in, and that’s a good thing.

You do have to get used to driving it. In addition to it being a lot of fun to drive, there is a size issue. When you’re on the highway and everybody else is towering over you, you sort of feel like a bug about to be squashed under someone’s shoe. I have been driving since I was 16 years old and I don’t think I was ever afraid behind the wheel, but the first time I came up on a tractor trailer, I thought he was going to drive right over me or slam me into the guardrail. It’s a safe car, with some great safety features (thanks, Cornering Brake Control!); that’s not the problem at all. It’s that everybody else is in these giant cars. But the more I drive it, the more used to it I’m getting and the more comfortable I feel passing huge vehicles on the road. Because I’m in a little race car, and they aren’t!

I will say that the MINI is bigger than it looks when you’re inside it. It’s like magic that way. You don’t realize it when you’re just looking at the car, but the wheels are all the way on the end of the car. It both adds room and makes the car easier to handle. There’s no wasted space (case in point: the engine is sideways) so you can use the room you have. It’s very efficient that way. I’ve met some other people who drive MINIs, and some of them are surprisingly tall. Others have kids and fit car seats in the back and everything.

Anyway, if you’re in the market for a new car, you should really check out the MINI. It’s safe, it’s got all kinds of technology packed inside, it’s surprisingly roomy, and it drives amazing. Plus, you will be the coolest looking car on the road, no question!