RIP stick shift: MINI Cooper drops manual transmission

Last week, MINI unveiled the all-new MINI Cooper to the world, firstly in its fully electric version. MINI will be unveiling the internal combustion engine (ICE) versions of the MINI Cooper soon, but there will not be a manual version of the car. This was confirmed by MINI Head of brand, Stefanie Wurst. Speaking to Top Gear, she said, “We won’t have a manual [MINI Cooper] unfortunately”.

This means that the John Cooper Works (JCW) 1to6 Edition of the MINI Cooper was the swan song to the manual transmission in this iconic hatchback. There are only 999 units of the JCW 1to6, and it was made in celebration of the entry of the MINI John Cooper Works GP into the 24-hour race at Nurburgring with Bulldog Racing.

The MINI John Cooper Works 1to6 Edition

Despite the axing of the MINI Cooper’s manual transmission, the company says that it isn’t the end of MINI in motorsport. Stefanie Wurst told Top Gear, “I think meeting Charlie [Cooper, grandson of one John Cooper] made me confident about continuing with motorsport. Performance still helps to sell cars.”

Wurst adds, “He’s an entrepreneur and he’s into electric bikes. And with his heritage – being the carrier of the name – but then also being into electromobility, it’s the perfect bridge. So, we plan to go with him into electric motorsport as well.”

RELATED: All-new MINI Cooper Electric unveiled – 2 variants, up to 402 km range

As for the electric versions of the MINI Cooper, there are two versions – the Cooper E and Cooper SE. The Cooper E makes 184 hp and 290 Nm and has a 0-100km/h acceleration time of 7.3 seconds. The Cooper SE makes 218 hp and 330 Nm and has a 0-100 km/h acceleration time of 6.7 seconds. The former has an electric range of 305 km while the latter has a range of 402 km.

What are your thoughts on the MINI Cooper dropping its manual transmission?

RELATED: MINI John Cooper Works 1to6 Edition unveiled – 6-speed manual only, limited 999 units


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