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Mini Cooper GP vs Abarth Review
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Thread: Mini Cooper GP vs Abarth Review

  1. #1
    Member SLOWAbarth's Avatar
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    Mini Cooper GP vs Abarth Review

    SO...my best bud just got a Mini GP and we have been racing against eachother since the trip home from the dealership.

    The Mini cooper GP is 39k and my Abarth was $26k...it's hard to compare the two because the GP is just so much more expensive and you get more power, better aerodynamics, better brakes, stickier tires, bilstein coilovers etc.

    On the highway, the GP pulls about 5 car lengths (abarth size car lengths lol) on my Abarth...I was honestly pissed because I have an intake, MM module, pulley, actuator etc.... we were dead even at the top of 3rd and then boom he leaves me in 4th.

    I drove the GP on the same race track that I tested my Abarth on, The GP runs a 7 seconds faster lap....which is amazingly faster... better tires and suspension.

    Everytime I look at his GP, it makes me HATE my Abarth. The Abarth is a "cooler" car in my eyes, as it's not so common. Mini Coopers will always be Mini Coopers, GP or not. It's a damn Mini lol

    The Mini Cooper GP Aero kit offers a 90%, yes 90% in drag reduction over the stock design. It's basically a complete flat bottom car.

    Even if I put slicks, brakes and suspension on my Abarth, It could only realistically drop 3-4 seconds on the track. Which is not good enough in my eyes...

    At the end of the day, I WANT A GP! I found one for 35k with 2k miles, they come with a fully built motor and a twin scroll turbocharger.

    Has anyone else played with a GP? There are only 400 in the US.

    Here is the MINI GP in action, this was the stock Mini lap record at our local track.


    Here is the Abarth at full speed...
    Last edited by SLOWAbarth; 09-17-2013 at 09:56 AM.

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    Lifetime Member Lifetime Member MAZ's Avatar
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    In all fairness;
    Is the GP and the Abarth really comparable with a $10k price tag difference?

    I was under the impression that the GP was a 'special build' much like a Golf R, the 'RS' badged Audis or Sti whatever
    For example:
    Mini, Cooper S, GP
    Golf, Gti, R
    A5, S5, RS5
    Whereas Fiat doesn't offer a third 'highest' performance tier?

    amiwrong?
    Last edited by MAZ; 09-17-2013 at 02:44 PM.

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    Member SLOWAbarth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAZ View Post
    Is the GP and the Abarth comparable with a $10k difference in price?
    I was under the impression that the GP was a 'special build' much like a Golf R, 'RS' Audi or Sti whatever
    For example:
    Mini, Cooper S, GP
    Golf, Gti, R
    A5, S5, RS5
    Whereas Fiat doesn't has this third performance tier?
    amiwrong?
    I mean, they even have it likes this:
    Cooper, Cooper S, Cooper JCW and then the GP.

    The Cooper S basically spanks the Abarth lol

    I stated in my post that "it's a hard comparison because the GP is much more expensive" but it's still interesting
    Last edited by SLOWAbarth; 09-17-2013 at 10:25 AM.

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    Lifetime Member Lifetime Member MAZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SLOWAbarth View Post
    I mean, they even have it likes this:
    Cooper, Cooper S, Cooper JCW and then the GP.

    The Cooper S basically spanks the Abarth lol

    I stated in my post that "it's a hard comparison because the GP is much more expensive" but it's still interesting
    I would imagine that if you compared the Cooper S (or jcw) with the GP, you would prefer the GP.
    If not, than the GP would be a failure.

    Abarth vs GP (@+$10k?) Not exactly a fair matchup imo, So don't torture yourself, lol.
    Last edited by MAZ; 09-17-2013 at 10:49 AM.

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    Senior Member ScorpionSkins.com's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SLOWAbarth View Post
    Everytime I look at his GP, it makes me HATE my Abarth. The Abarth is a "cooler" car in my eyes, as it's not so common. Mini Coopers will always be Mini Coopers, GP or not. It's a damn Mini lol
    I'm the former owner of a Mini Cooper S (turbocharged model). I'd argue there were a few things Mini did better (interior luxury/quality, handling), and the earlier Mini S supercharged models were fantastic for a go-kart style driving experience. Unfortunately, I found the reliability and engineering quality of the Minis to be horrible. I had the transmission fail on me within 85,000km. Fuel pump issues, carbon buildup problems (misfires), turbo oil line leaks, suspension component failure, the infamous tensioner issue which led to catastrophic engine failure was constantly on my mind (which luckily I didn't encounter myself in the short time that I owned it). The worst of it all was BMWs ridiculous stance on parts and service. No bearing kits were available for the transmission, which means when it failed, it couldn't be rebuilt. The majority of components required direct replacement ($8000 was the quote for my transmission, excluding labour).

    Granted, we haven't had Abarths available to us in North America long enough to offer a direct comparison, but even on the Euro forums, Abarth issues are relatively minor in comparison and major issues are few and far between. When I was researching Fiat reliability in comparison to the Mini, the Mini was listed as one of the top 10 worst brands to own for vehicle reliability, while Fiat was in the top 100 best.

    The Abarth may not be the fastest vehicle on the block, but in my eyes it's got an engine worth its weight, and it's the technology of the vehicle I admire over the final top speed and vehicle characteristics. Although you bring up valid points, I'd love to see what an Abarth could be like with $13,000 worth of additional development and uprated components.

    My personal recommendations as a former Mini owner who dealt with more headaches than vehicle enjoyment: Avoid the Mini brand entirely.
    Last edited by ScorpionSkins.com; 09-17-2013 at 12:11 PM.
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    Senior Member mudking's Avatar
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    I would still take the Abarth @23k, and add $15k of upgrades and have some $$ left over for an over the Top Picture session of my Mini Cooper GP challenger....that's talking fair IMO... In all reality though the Mini Cooper GP is an awesome out of the box experience but the price point is just way too far out of the Abarth's starting point.

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    In all reality though the Mini Cooper GP is an awesome out of the box experience but the price point is just way too far out of the Abarth's starting point.
    To which I would add: The current range of Mini's are all just butt-ugly!

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    Senior Member DesmosDromos's Avatar
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    I traded a Mk V VW R32 on my Abarth. Was the R32 faster and quicker? Probably, but the Abarth is just so much more fun! It's even fun at low speeds. If I wanted to spend more and go faster there are other choices, but the Abarth puts a smile on my face every drive like no car I've had in a long time. I have no regrets and don't sweat comparo tests.

    That said, it's all personal taste and what you're willing to compromise on. Hey, if you want the hot MINI and have the cash, go for it!
    EVERY drive is an epic drive in an Abarth!

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    Quote Originally Posted by DesmosDromos View Post
    ... it's all personal taste and what you're willing to compromise on. Hey, if you want the hot MINI and have the cash, go for it!
    Yeah, The Abarth was already more than I really wanted to spend. I can't see forking out another $15K personally. I like the mini but spending that kind of cash opens up the door for lots of different options. For that scratch I'd be looking hard at things like Subaru STI WRT or even the Cadillac ATS.
    Last edited by whatebahw; 09-17-2013 at 11:32 AM.

  11. #10
    Senior Member mudking's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hownowcb View Post
    To which I would add: The current range of Mini's are all just butt-ugly!
    LOL....I didn't want to call it names, butt thanks!

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