The Mini is certainly iconic, being seen as one of the great British cars. People think of the Italian Job, and of the rally wins. I certainly like to think of the latter, seeing the Mini running around on the Monte Carlo Rally and winning.
Unfortunately, because it was so iconic, they forgot to stop making it. They managed to keep on making it into the 21st century before BMW bought out Rover, by then its makers, and made a new Mini which has also become a mighty success.
The Cooper here is a Cooper S from Austin, and so I was expecting something great to just throw about without a care in the world. The paintjob was even mostly what I wanted, apart from the fact I wanted silver stripes on the front too. That’s what a classic Mini looks like in my mind.
Sadly, I was to be left disappointed.
I wasn’t expecting it to be fast, of course. But then you don’t need speed to make fun, as the real life model of this doubtlessly proved. In fact I’ve even seen plenty of examples in racing games myself. Unfortunately, this isn’t one of them.
The car just isn’t rewarding when you turn the wheel. Sure it slides about, but not in a way you actually want it to…it’s more just something that gets in the way. The drone from the engine is also something I expected, yet here I just couldn’t live with it.
Some slow cars aren’t worth the bother to drive but with this you just expect that it will be…and yet it just doesn’t want to join in the fun.
What’s the problem then? Well I thought it was the model of car but actually, it isn’t. Though the game doesn’t give it away, this is the MkII model that to my mind is the quintessential Mini. So it has no reason to disappoint there.
I reckon the real problem is that it’s not being driven in the situation I know it should be. And indeed, maybe it isn’t the right Mini all along.
Because if this is anything to go by, if you want to put in an original Mini that’ll give you some fun, it’ll have to be rally prepared and have a number on the side.
And you can’t just leave it be on a tarmac track like Brands Hatch here. You’ve gotta stick it where I think it belongs…in Monte Carlo.
So I’ll find a game that does just that. And when I’ve bought it, I’ll go out and drive it there.
Here though, you’re not going to get much of anything. So you’re best off looking elsewhere.