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Nolan Gotta Ride…

March 31, 2008

I should have seen this coming.

Maybe back in December when I took a second look at the Mini Cooper Clubman and thought…hmm.

Maybe a few weeks ago when I installed Nolan’s car seat in the Mini and realized forcing someone to sit in the straight-backed, slid-forward passenger seat would probably constitute a violation of the Geneva Convention.

Or maybe it was the recurring dream of dropping Nolan off at day care, only to discover I couldn’t wrench is car seat out of the back, and was forced to leave the car and walk to work.

In any case…I should have seen this coming. The Mini, great as it is, has its limitations. I’ve never had to deal with those limitations (ability to carry either people or stuff, but not both…terrible backseat access…) with any regularity, but now that Nolan’s here, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes an issue, especially considering that I will be the one taking him to day care in the mornings.

And so this last week, I pulled the trigger and placed an order on a 2008 Mini Cooper Clubman S (say that five times fast). It’s a vehicle that, the more I’ve read about it, the more enamored I’ve become. Sure it’s bigger where it counts, sure it has vastly better access to the backseat and a cargo space that’s actually useable with the rear seats up. But it also has underfloor storage in the back, better iPod compatibility, better fuel economy, and from what I’ve read, a devilish little sport button that completely transforms the car’s steering weight, throttle response, and shift points.

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The hardest part, actually, was figuring out which color to order. I went through several combos – blue with a silver roof, white with a black roof, and even briefly considered Hot Chocolate/Silver before finally arriving at the Chili Red/Black combo.

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It should be arriving in early June. So, until then, I’ll have a few more months to bid a fond farewell to my R53. I hadn’t intended to say goodbye to it this early. In fact, one of the reasons I got the Mini when I did was becuase I was convinced the second-generation R56 was not enough of an improvement over the R53 to have me kicking myself for buying the outgoing model. With regards to the R56 itself, I still agree with that. But the R55 Clubman offers a substantial improvement in functionality that is just too good for me to pass up.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. April 2, 2008 11:16 pm

    Dood. That is SO awesome. I saw a Clubman in the flesh for the first time over the weekend. It’s flawless, the perfect combo of form, function, performance, and personality. Congrats man!

  2. April 3, 2008 8:48 pm

    All I have to say is KIDS=4 Doors

  3. Matt permalink*
    April 4, 2008 6:30 am

    Kyle – Thanks! Saw my first Clubman in person on Tuesday. It was a base Astro Black/Silver. Looked smaller than I’d envisioned, but the proportions are fantastic. Definitely glad I’m going with the black roof. Silver makes it look a bit bulky.

    JB – Says the guy who has an Audi A4 Cabrio!

  4. April 4, 2008 10:30 am

    Yea, Good point – however both of my kids can buckle their own seat belt…HAHAHA

  5. May 12, 2008 12:17 pm

    Cool info – look forward to stopping by again soon.

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