In-depth reviews

MINI 5-door hatchback review

"The MINI hatchback is also available with five doors, making it much more practical for families, while still being fun to drive"

Carbuyer Rating

4.1 out of 5

Owners Rating

4.3 out of 5

Read owner reviews

Pros

  • Practicality hasn’t removed fun factor
  • Efficient and powerful engines
  • Stylish retro design

Cons

  • Quite pricey to buy
  • Extensive but expensive options list
  • Other cars in the class are more practical

For well over a decade, the MINI hatchback was only available in the same three-door format as the 1959 car that first carried the Mini badge. Today, though, the range has expanded to offer a MINI Countryman SUV and MINI Clubman estate, while the MINI hatchback itself is now available with five doors.

So, as well as appealing to fashion-conscious couples and individuals, the MINI is now far more suited to the rigours of family life. The five-door version accounts for around 40% of MINI hatchbacks sold, despite costing slightly more than the three-door. With three rather more spacious rear seats as a consequence of being a little longer than the three-door, it makes a stylish if pricey alternative to the Ford Fiesta, Volkswagen Polo, Peugeot 208 and SEAT Ibiza, as well as rivalling the Audi A1 Sportback directly.

Best small cars and superminis

MINIs have never blended in with the crowd and although the five-door has slightly awkward proportions compared with the three-door, most of the styling cues are shared. The car received an update for 2021, with a larger grille and LED headlamps that now also incorporate the fog lights, allowing air inlets in their place. Much of the chrome exterior trim has also been swapped in favour of black, for a sportier look.

Despite being physically longer than the MINI hatchback, the five-door is still fun to drive – thanks to sporty suspension and three-cylinder petrol engines that feel enthusiastic when pushed. The engine line-up ascends through One, Cooper and Cooper S, with the One being the most economical, managing up to 51.4mpg and emitting 124-130g/km of CO2. At the opposite extreme, the MINI Cooper S can hit 62mph from a standing start in just 6.7 seconds, yet can still return a reasonable 47.9mpg in its most efficient form.

A dual-clutch (DCT) automatic gearbox was introduced at the start of 2018, replacing the old six-speed automatic. The newer gearbox is much smoother, both when pottering around town and under hard acceleration or shifting quickly in bursts between corners. It offers slight fuel-efficiency improvements, too.

Compared to the tightly packaged three-door model, the five-door offers rear-seat passengers much more leg and headroom, but despite growing by 67 litres, its boot is still smaller than a Ford Fiesta’s. There’s also quite a prominent loading lip and the 60:40 split-folding rear seats don’t sit flush when flipped forwards, which leaves a step to lift heavy items over.

MINI has become famous for the numerous options and personalisation accessories it offers customers and the five-door is no different. However, the introduction of three trim levels has made it easier to choose your ideal MINI. The line-up starts with Classic, which boasts an 8.8-inch colour infotainment screen, Bluetooth connectivity, DAB radio and audio streaming, as well as air-conditioning. It also offers standard features that were included in the previously optional Pepper and Chilli packs, including automatic headlamps and rain-sensing wipers, as well as nifty projectors that cast a MINI logo on the ground when a door is opened.

You can choose to upgrade to the Sport or Exclusive, the former having a racy look and the latter a more luxurious theme. As ever, there's a long list of option packs and individual upgrades to choose from, which explains why you rarely find two MINIs that are exactly the same.

The MINI hatchback didn’t feature in our 2020 Driver power owner satisfaction survey, with its last appearance in 2018 resulting in a 57th place finish out of 75 cars. In our brand survey, only 8% of MINI owners reported a fault in the first of ownership. The MINI three-door achieved four stars in Euro NCAP crash-testing, which is slightly disappointing when several rivals managed five stars.

Recommended

MINI 5-door hatchback owner reviews
MINI 5-door hatchback
MINI 5-door hatchback
1 May 2021

MINI 5-door hatchback owner reviews

Facelifted 2021 MINI hatchback range arrives
Facelifted MINI range
MINI
26 Jan 2021

Facelifted 2021 MINI hatchback range arrives

Most Popular

Best 4x4s and SUVs
Peugeot 3008 SUV rear 3/4 tracking
Family SUVs
3 Jun 2021

Best 4x4s and SUVs

New BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe revealed
New BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe
BMW 4 Series
9 Jun 2021

New BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe revealed

Best cheap-to-run cars
Toyota Prius front 3/4 cornering
Best cars
10 Jun 2021

Best cheap-to-run cars

Best cheap cars
Dacia Duster SUV
Best cars
10 Jun 2021

Best cheap cars

Best new car deals 2021
Nissan Qashqai
Deals
11 Jun 2021

Best new car deals 2021

Speed awareness course: all you need to know
Police car - open boot
Tips and advice
3 Jun 2021

Speed awareness course: all you need to know

Dartford Crossing toll changes and Dart Charge
Dartford Crossing
Tips and advice
8 Jun 2021

Dartford Crossing toll changes and Dart Charge

Best hybrid cars
Toyota Corolla Trek
Best cars
8 Jun 2021

Best hybrid cars

Audi range gets a refresh for 2022
Audi S5 Coupe Black Edition
Audi
14 Jun 2021

Audi range gets a refresh for 2022

New Lexus NX is brand’s first plug-in hybrid
2021 Lexus NX
Lexus NX
12 Jun 2021

New Lexus NX is brand’s first plug-in hybrid

Ford EcoBoost engines: what are they and should you buy one?
2020 Ford Puma - front tracking
Ford Focus hatchback
4 Jun 2021

Ford EcoBoost engines: what are they and should you buy one?

First look at the new Audi RS3
2021 Audi RS3 saloon and hatchback
Audi RS3
10 Jun 2021

First look at the new Audi RS3

Ford Puma ST SUV review
Ford Puma ST
Ford Puma ST
8 Jun 2021

Ford Puma ST SUV review

Next Vauxhall Astra to get sleek new look
2021 Vauxhall Astra
Vauxhall Astra hatchback
8 Jun 2021

Next Vauxhall Astra to get sleek new look

More on 5-door hatchback

Facelifted 2021 MINI hatchback range arrives
Facelifted MINI range
MINI
26 Jan 2021

Facelifted 2021 MINI hatchback range arrives

MINI hatch, convertible and MINI Electric updated with new colours and extra kit
New 2019 MINI Electric review
MINI
17 Jul 2019

New 2019 MINI Electric review

We drive the electric MINI Cooper SE to see whether MINI’s first electric car is a success
Best small automatic cars
Best cars
12 Jun 2019

Best small automatic cars

You don't have to buy an expensive car to benefit from an automatic gearbox - here are the best small automatic cars to choose if you'd rather not cha…
MINI Sport Pack promises improved used values
MINI hatchback
6 Feb 2015

MINI Sport Pack promises improved used values

The MINI Sport Pack provides MINI Hatchback models with a racier look, and the promise of improved used values

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
13 Apr 2021

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Electric car charging station
Tips and advice
3 Jun 2021

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Tips and advice
15 Jun 2021

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
24 Feb 2021

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Best car interiors
Best cars
10 Mar 2020

Best car interiors

Best electric cars
Volkswagen ID.3
Best cars
6 May 2021

Best electric cars

Best cheap-to-run cars
Toyota Prius front 3/4 cornering
Best cars
10 Jun 2021

Best cheap-to-run cars

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks
Hot hatches
9 Apr 2020

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks