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The Cooper Clubman’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
Both the Cooper Clubman and the Golf Alltrack have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available front parking sensors.
The Cooper Clubman’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the Golf Alltrack’s (12 vs. 10 years).
MINI pays for scheduled maintenance on the Cooper Clubman for 3 years and 36,000 miles. MINI will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Volkswagen doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Golf Alltrack.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that MINI vehicles are better in initial quality than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks MINI 23rd in initial quality. With 6 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 25th.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that MINI vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks MINI 6th in reliability, above the industry average. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 12th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that MINI vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks MINI 7 places higher in reliability than Volkswagen.
The Cooper Clubman S’ standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 21 more horsepower (189 vs. 168) and 7 lbs.-ft. more torque (206 vs. 199) than the Golf Alltrack’s 1.8 turbo 4 cyl. The JCW Clubman’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 133 more horsepower (301 vs. 168) and 132 lbs.-ft. more torque (331 vs. 199) than the Golf Alltrack’s 1.8 turbo 4 cyl.
On the EPA test cycle the Cooper Clubman S ALL4 eight-speed Auto gets better fuel mileage than the Golf Alltrack Auto (23 city/32 hwy vs. 22 city/30 hwy).
Regenerative brakes improve the Cooper Clubman’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Cooper Clubman Auto’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The MINI Cooper Clubman comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Golf Alltrack.
An eight-speed automatic is available on the MINI Cooper Clubman, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Golf Alltrack.
To help the driver achieve optimum performance and fuel economy, the Cooper Clubman has a standard up-shift light to indicate when to shift based on power needs and conditions. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer an up-shift light.
For better stopping power the Cooper Clubman’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Golf Alltrack:
The Cooper Clubman stops much shorter than the Golf Alltrack:
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Car and Driver
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For better traction, the Cooper Clubman has larger tires than the Golf Alltrack (225/45R17 vs. 205/55R17).
The Cooper Clubman’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Golf Alltrack’s standard 55 series tires. The Cooper Clubman’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Golf Alltrack’s optional 45 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Cooper Clubman offers optional 19-inch wheels. The Golf Alltrack’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.
Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the Cooper Clubman can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer run-flat tires.
The Cooper Clubman offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Golf Alltrack’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Cooper Clubman’s wheelbase is 1.6 inches longer than on the Golf Alltrack (105.1 inches vs. 103.5 inches).
The Cooper Clubman S handles at .87 G’s, while the Golf Alltrack SEL pulls only .84 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.
The Cooper Clubman S ALL4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.2 seconds quicker than the Golf Alltrack SEL (26.5 seconds @ .67 average G’s vs. 27.7 seconds @ .61 average G’s).
The Cooper Clubman is 11.7 inches shorter than the Golf Alltrack, making the Cooper Clubman easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
The front grille of the Cooper Clubman uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Cooper Clubman has 1.6 inches more front headroom and .2 inches more front legroom than the Golf Alltrack.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Cooper Clubman’s available rear seats recline. The Golf Alltrack’s rear seats don’t recline.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Cooper Clubman’s available cargo door can be opened just by waving your foot, leaving your hands completely free. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
When different drivers share the Cooper Clubman, the optional memory seats make it convenient. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer memory seats.
The Cooper Clubman 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 Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The Cooper Clubman’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Golf Alltrack has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
If the windows are left open on the Cooper Clubman the driver can close them all 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 Golf Alltrack can’t use the remote to operate the windows.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Cooper Clubman to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The Cooper Clubman offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer headlight washers.
The Cooper Clubman 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 Golf Alltrack offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.
To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the MINI Cooper Clubman offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.
The Cooper Clubman is available in both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations. The Golf Alltrack doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.
The Cooper Clubman will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Cooper Clubman will retain 41.56% to 50.8% of its original price after five years, while the Golf Alltrack only retains 38.44% to 40.76%.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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