- Alfa Romeo
- Aston Martin
- Land Rover
Free Runners from around the world converged in Detroit last weekend to compete in the MINI-sponsored Red Bull Art of Motion competition. This international free-running competition has been held in cities around the world, and the event in Detroit was the only US stop, as well as the final one, for the 2011 series.
This hot sport is currently a YouTube favorite. Basically, a Free Runner’s goal is to complete a course in an urban setting that’s filled with obstacles of all kinds with as much creativity, style and skill as possible. It’s cool to watch these athletes defy gravity as they leap gorges between buildings and obstacles in awe-inspiring and gasp-inducing feats of lightness. MINI got in on the action, and the all-new MINI Coupe was part of the obstacle course at Russell Industrial Center, while a MINI Clubman was one of many obstacles at Detroit’s Hart Plaza during the final round. Free Runners flipped, vaulted and rolled their way over these cars during their routines in this competition.
Video of the competition after the jump
You still get the regular Cooper, but add to that the Convertible, the Clubman, the Countryman, the recently announced Paceman, plus the Coupe and Speedster versions planned for 2012, you’d think MINI has enough on its plate already. But you’d be wrong, or at least you would be if the latest rumors prove to be true.
Some rides are better suited for your dogs than others. From your dog’s point of view, all they need is an open window to stick their head out of, but the American Automobile Association (AAA) has put a bit more thought into compiling their list of the best canine-friendly vehicles.
“More than 45 million households in the U.S. have a dog, and many are taking Fido along for the ride on a regular basis,” said John Nielsen, AAA National Director of Auto Repair and Buying Services. “There several vehicles with features that can help keep pets safe, comfortable and easy to clean-up after while also addressing other driver desires such as sportiness, adventure or luxury.”
In order to put together the most through list, AAA Auto Buying’s team of experts test drove and reviewed hundreds of vehicles. The list was based on a wide variety of factors such as crash test ratings, safety features, fuel economy, ease of animal ingress and egress, cargo area size, availability of tie-down hooks and easy-to-clean interiors.
Broken down into six categories, see the winners after the jump:
Day 4 Of the MINI Takes The States Tour was an exciting one for me, as I was able to sample the all-new MINI Countryman before nearly anyone else. Saturday’s epic blast through two states left me exhausted, and I was expecting the Countryman to be a little more laid back than the Clubman S I drove yesterday. I was wrong. Don’t think of the Countryman as a MINI SUV, but as a MINI Cooper S for people with obligations.
Hit the jump to read more about the MINI Countryman
Day 3 of the MINI Takes The States Tour placed a big emphasis on driving. Not the kind of stop and go commuter traffic that we experienced in New York, Philly and Baltimore, but on the kind of high performance spirited driving that MINIs are known for.
Don’t get me wrong – as much as auto writers posture about blasting across twisty blacktop or exiting a corner on a road course with the wheel cranked at full lock, they know somewhere deep down they understand that their audience wants to know how the car does in the daily grind of traffic, gas mileage and all the unglamorous stuff left to plebian drivers. These are the conditions where we drive our press cars 95% of the time; stuck in a barely moving single file row of other cars, belching greenhouse emissions, A/C cranked and the same Lady GaGa song playing across the same 5 radio stations owned by one media conglomerate.
If you’re test driving a mid-size sedan, then the review will be centered on these conditions. But if you’re in something a bit sportier, you’ll go to bed a little earlier on a Friday night and maybe not go to the bar with your buddies. The alarm will be set for an ungodly hour, but you won’t need that double batch of morning coffee, because the urgency will be there. It’s like Christmas morning even though the August humidity is just starting to creep into your day. Today was one of those days.
Hit the jump to see how it all went down:
Fiat is taking dead aim at the MINI brand and is set to introduce two new versions, a three-door estate (a long wheelbase 500 modeled after the Clubman) and a proper five-door hatchback with more interior room. Not surprisingly, these versions will be offered in North America, where the increased space and practicality should broaden the appeal of Fiat’s hot hatch.