It's time to bring out your magnifying glasses. The two Mini models that have sometimes been vilified for being too big--and therefore un-Mini--have been given facelifts. Well, sort of. Because the alterations are so subtle, you have to be a true modern Mini fan to notice the changes.
The Countryman gets a new hexagonal grille, standard underride guard elements for the front and rear apron in the all-wheel-drive models, new alloy wheel designs with reduced weight, new paint colors, and more customization options (roof, side mirror caps and hood stripes). Under the hood, the Cooper S variant gets a slight power bump with an increase of 7hp, resulting in 190hp of thrust.
Since the Paceman is essentially a two-door version of the Countryman, the upgrades are, well, essentially the same. The Paceman receives a new grille, paint options, and a similar power increase. Both models also receive new fog lamps, and the standard six-speed manual transmission is retained.
This facelift also heralds the arrival of a new version of the extreme Mini John Cooper Works Paceman seen in the photos below.
The Countryman and the Paceman have their share of pundits who believe a four-door Mini is an oxymoron. But 350,000 buyers of the Countryman since its introduction in 2010 have proven that there's definitely a market for this type of vehicle. Of course, there's still the new Mini Hatch for those who want a purer British hatchback, but that model has also grown a bit.
If you decide to buy the current versions now, you won't be missing much because the changes are so incremental. There's no official word from the Philippine distributor either, but we're guessing these two face-lifted Mini models should arrive by year's end.