R50/R53 First Generation Mini Cooper Buyers Guide

R50/R53 First Generation Mini Cooper Buyers Guide

R50 and R53 Mini Cooper Hatchback

Looking to purchase a first generation Mini? The first generation Mini Cooper hatchback was offered from 2002-2006, and went mostly unchanged with the exception of a minor cosmetic refresh in 2005. While these are some of the most fun cars to own and drive, they can quickly become a hassle if not cared for properly. The potential headaches make a pre purchase inspection all the more important. Motoring File has put together a great buyers guide for the R50 and R53 Mini’s, so you can make sure that the Mini you are about to buy can keep up with your spirited driving.


Some other things you should take a look at:

Power steering pump:

A difficult task to replace, but many first gen Mini’s have had them replaced under warranty. Finding one with this job already performed is a big plus.


If at all possible, the automatic transmission should be avoided. The first generation Mini Coopers are notorious for having trouble with the automatics, while the manuals are rather robust. The automatic transmission is also a costly component to replace. Plus, the Mini’s gearbox is one of the slickest shifting boxes available.

Oxygen sensor:

Mini has extended the warranty to 10yrs/100k miles on this part, so many of the premature failures will have been replaced. Check to make sure this is the case.

Strut tower and door sill:

Check for rust in these areas.

Crank seal and valve cover gasket:

Make sure these are not leaking any oil.

Even by checking all of the above, every potential issue can’t be accounted for. That’s what ALLMAG is here for! From anything to cosmetic enhancements, upgrades, and OEM replacements, we have everything you need to keep your Mini in tip-top shape.













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