Even though nearly two months have passed since the 2025 Countryman made its debut, we’re still trying to wrap our heads around the idea it still carries a MINI badge. Significantly larger than its predecessor, the compact crossover can be seen in one of the adjacent images next to an X7. Yes, it’s substantially smaller, but one would’ve expected a far greater gap between a MINI and a BMW fullsize SUV.
The initial release focused on the purely electric Countryman before MINI unveiled the hot John Cooper Works with a gasoline engine. Now, the S version is getting a proper introduction, bringing some notable changes compared to its predecessor. Not just in terms of size, but also as far as the drivetrain. Whereas the old one had standard front-wheel drive with optional AWD, its replacement gets the ALL4 treatment out of the box.
You had to make do with 189 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque on the 2024 Countryman S but the new version has 241 hp and 265 lb-ft from its turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline engine. Yes, output is up by 52 hp and 58 lb-ft courtesy of a four-pot mill benefitting from mild-hybrid technology. The 48V setup provides a temporary boost of 19 hp.
It’s worth noting the power rating is applicable to the U.S. model since the European version has only 218 hp, down 23 hp compared to its American cousin, presumably because of stricter regulations regarding emissions. Seeing the glass half full, the torque figure remains unchanged. It’s the same story with the JCW variant since it’s weaker on the Old Continent, much like the X1 M35i and X2 M35i pack a greater punch in the U.S. than in Europe.
At an additional cost, MINI will fit an adaptive suspension with configurable dampers to lower the ride height by as much as 15 millimeters (0.6 inches). Wheel sizes vary from 18 to 20 inches in the U.S. and from 17 to 21 inches in Europe. MINI USA is charging $38,900 (before the $995 destination and handling fees), which represents an increase of $3,900 compared to the 2024 Countryman S ALL4.
Production for the U.S. market begins in March 2024, with dealers to get the first vehicles at the beginning of May.