2019 MINI Cooper Hardtop 2 Door vs. 2018 Ford Focus RS

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/03/31

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers optional City Safety, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Focus RS doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers optional MINI Connected, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Focus RS doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door and the Focus RS have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door the rating of “Top Pick” for 2017, a rating granted to only 149 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Focus RS has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

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The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Focus RS’ 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Focus RS’ (12 vs. 5 years).

MINI pays for scheduled maintenance on the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door for 3 years and 36,000 miles. MINI will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Ford doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Focus RS.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door S Manual 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (189 HP) gets better fuel mileage than the Focus RS (23 city/32 hwy vs. 19 city/26 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Focus RS doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Transmission

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The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers an optional automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. The Focus RS doesn’t offer an automatic transmission.

To help the driver achieve optimum performance and fuel economy, the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door has a standard up-shift light to indicate when to shift based on power needs and conditions. The Focus RS doesn’t offer an up-shift light.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door stops shorter than the Focus RS:

 

Cooper Hardtop 2 Door

Focus RS

 

70 to 0 MPH

158 feet

160 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

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Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Focus RS doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door Base has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the Focus RS; it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

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For better maneuverability, the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s turning circle is 3.3 feet tighter than the Focus RS’ (35.4 feet vs. 38.7 feet).

Chassis

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The MINI Cooper Hardtop 2 Door may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 600 to 850 pounds less than the Ford Focus RS.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door is 1 foot, 9.7 inches shorter than the Focus RS, making the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The front grille of the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Focus RS doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

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For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s rear seats recline. The Focus RS’ rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

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A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door easier. The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s trunk lift-over height is 25.4 inches, while the Focus RS’ liftover is 28.2 inches.

Servicing Ease

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The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Focus RS uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

A Service Interval Indicator is standard on the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes and brake pad replacement, vehicle inspection based on actual driving conditions. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Ford doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the Focus RS.

Ergonomics

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The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Focus RS doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

If the front windows are left open on the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door the driver can close them at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Focus RS can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Focus RS doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Focus RS’ intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Focus RS doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Focus RS doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Focus RS doesn’t offer cornering lights.

To better shield the driver’s vision, the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door has a standard dual-element sun visor that can block glare from two directions simultaneously. The Focus RS doesn’t offer a secondary sun visor.

To shield the driver’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side window, the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door has a standard extendable sun visor. The Focus RS doesn’t offer extendable visors.

When the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Focus RS’ mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Focus RS offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door offers an optional Active Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Focus RS doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The Cooper Hardtop 2 Door’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Focus RS doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Model Availability

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The MINI Cooper comes in coupe, convertible and four door hatchback bodystyles; the Ford Focus RS isn’t available as a coupe, convertible or four door.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door will cost $5460 to $6535 less than the Focus RS over a five-year period.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the MINI Cooper Hardtop 2 Door will be $9117 to $18748 less than for the Ford Focus RS.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/03/31

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Cooper Hardtop 2 Door first among compact sporty cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Focus RS isn’t in the top three.

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