Monthly Archives: July 2012

collectibles: Hot Wheels Team USA Olympics MINI

Hot Wheels Team USA MINI
Just in time for the 2012 London Olympics, Hot Wheels created a special limited-edition Hot Wheels die-cast MINI.  The Red and White MINI with redline wheels was offered only to members.

The Olympics are all about top performance, and this stylish vehicle captures the spirit of competition in eye-catching style. Created for the US Olympic Committee in support of Team USA, this car also earns the highest marks for good looks. Here are the specs:

  • Zinc body with Spectraflame Red finish
  • Nickel-plated chassis
  • Black interior
  • Clear windows
  • Black fenders
  • Real Riders wheels
  • Official USOC deco

The HWC USOC 2001 Mini Cooper comes with an individually numbered holographic sticker and ships in a Hot Wheels Kar Keepers case.

The original price was $16.99.  It’s unknown whether these are sold out, but they will probably be appearing on die-cast collector and auction sites.

See more on the official website.

RSR Motorsports takes third at Indianapolis

RSR Motorsports No. 198 MINI

RSR Motorsports drivers Chris Puskar and Randy Smalley took third place at the Brickyard Sports Car Challenge race in the GRAND-AM Continental Challenge Series today.  The No. 198 MINI Cooper S reached the podium along with two BMWs.

The team also placed sixth in their No. 196 Honda Civic Si.  Unfortunately, the No. 195 MINI Cooper S did not start the race.

See the official results from the GRAND-AM website.


The Source: Facebook app to share the MINI GP

The Source Facebook app

MINI has released yet another new Facebook app; this one is a contest. The Source is an app to promote the new MINI John Cooper Works GP. During the next month, MINI will release more MINI GP media such as videos in the app. Participants must share the information to get points.

Below are the two videos from Stage 2.

Visit the MINI The Source Facebook page.

Engineered for Speed

Go to the source page for Engineered for Speed.

Radical Aerodynamics

Go to the source page for Radical Aerodynamics.

X-raid Team wins Baja Spain in their MINI ALL4 Racing

X-raid Team MINI at Baja Spain 2012

[Photo by MCH Photo]

Stéphane Peterhansel and Jean-Paul Cottret continued their winning ways taking the Baja Spain 2012 in their MINI ALL4 Racing.  Another MINI made the podium when Khalifa Al Mutaiwei and Andreas Schulz placed second in their MINI ALL4 Racing.

From the X-raid Team Facebook page:

What a success for Team X-raid in the Baja Spain! In the first event following the rally break, the Trebur based team secured a fantastic result. French pairing Stéphane Peterhansel / Jean-Paul Cottret won the event with their green MINI ALL4 Racing, with Dubai’s Khalifa Al Mutaiwei and his German co-driver Andreas Schulz taking their MINI All4 Racing to second position. While Frenchman Jean-Louis Schlesser, Al Mutaiwei’s toughest opponent in the battle for the title, had to settle for finishing seventh, in the fourth round of the FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup.

In two of the four stages, Peterhansel was faster than his opponents. He won the 5.39-kilometre prologue on Friday and also proved to be the quickest in the second special stage (98.06km) on Saturday. Al Mutaiwei also delivered in great style, in Spain, and shone particularly on Sunday by winning the final special stage. He covered the 202.35 kilometres faster than anybody else, thus working his way up in the overall standings to finish runner-up.

“A very, very good result,” said X-raid Team Manager Sven Quandt. “Just great that Khalifa really went for it, today, and succeeded in passing Gadasin. In the previous special stages we mainly focused on consistency and doing so proved to be the perfect approach. And what can I say about Stéphane? He drove another very good rally and demonstrated that our new suspension works well.”

Meanwhile, a part of the Monster Energy X-raid Team travelled to Argentina, a few days ago. The reason: the Desafío Litoral, a rally on the Dakar Series calendar. In this event, Team X-raid will be represented by Nani Roma (ESP) and Michel Périn (FRA) in the yellow MINI ALL4 Racing as well as two BMW X3 CC vehicles that will be raced by Orlando Terranova (ARG) / Paulo Fiuza (POR) and Boris Garafulic (CHI) / Gilles Picard (FRA). Over the course of the six-day rally that will be started at Iguazu, well-known for its imposing waterfalls, the competitors will have to cover some 1600 kilometres to the finish Resistencia.

Overall Results:

1. S. Peterhansel (FRA) / J.-P. Cottret (FRA) MINI ALL4 Racing – 6:07:20
2. K. Al Mutaiwei (UAE) / A. Schulz (GER) MINI ALL4 Racing – 6:12:24
3. V. Vasilyev (RUS) / V. Yevtyekhov (RUS) G-Force Proto – 6:18:10
4. B. Gadasin (RUS) / D. Shchemel (RUS) G-Force Proto – 6:21:27
5. C.Casuneanu (ROU) / Z.Maurilio (ROU) Mitsubishi Racing Lancer – 6:24:47
6. M.Zapletal (CZE) / M.Marton (POL) Offroad Sport BMW X3 CC – 6:36:29
7. J.Schlesser (FRA) / C.Zhiltsov (RUS) Sonangol Schlesser – 6:41:11
8. Y.Kuznetso (RUS) / R.Elagin (RUS) Mitsubishi Pajero Evo – 6:44:02
9. MTraglio / R.Tornabel (ESP) Nissan Pathfinder – 6:47:10
10. J.Dinis (PRT) / L.Tirano (PRT) Mitsubishi Pajero DID – 7:01:16

WIN SMALL Facebook app

WIN SMALL Facebook app

As we saw on MINI Takes the State 2012, MINI USA is a partner with USA Olympics and USA Paralympics.  The theme is “WIN SMALL” and MINI USA released a video and Facebook app in support of it.

Small is feisty. Often underestimated, but rarely intimidated. Small tries harder, because it has to. So small’s victories are always sweeter. That’s why we’re celebrating those who dream big – no matter their size. To share your own Small-Beats-the-Odds story, visit us on Facebook. Now get out there and WIN SMALL.

You can use the app to upload your own story or video of winning despite the odds.  Or just download the the flag of cars images.

Visit the WIN SMALL Facebook app.

MINI JCW Countryman sneak peek on

MINI JCW Countryman on

Although you can’t configure one yet, has a sneak peek of the forthcoming MINI John Cooper Works Countryman.  See a few images and sign up for the MINI JCW Countryman email list if you’re interested in this latest member of the the MINI and John Cooper Works family.’s future concepts page also has the MINI JCW GP, MINI Clubvan, and MINI Paceman.

Visit Concepts

MINI Takes the States 2012 wrap-up

MINI Takes the States 2012 signatures

MINI Takes the States 2012 has finished.  It was another epic cross-country road rally led by MINI USA and “Chief Motorer” Jim McDowell.  Those who attended will have memories, and maybe some new friends, for a lifetime.  To relive your adventures or to see what you missed out on, visit our extensive lists of photo galleries, videos, blog posts, tweets, and articles.
MINI Takes the States 2012

Our MTTS 2012 pages

Other MTTS 2012 sites


MINI Takes the States 2012 collectibles

MINI Takes the States 2012 button pins

Major MINI events are always a great source of MINI items for collectors.  MINI Takes the States 2012 was no exception.

Each person who registered received an event lanyard and badge which was scanned to enter the events.  Also included with registration was a special MTTS 2012 bag filled with lots of MINI and non-MINI items including:

  • MINI Takes the States 2012 window cling
  • MINI Cooper scale model or MINI Bulldog keychain
  • MINI mousepad
  • The MINI International magazine vol. 37
  • MINI MotoringGear 2012 catalog
  • MINI print ads such as Whiptastic Handing and Gas Tank Lid decals
  • MINI Motoring Graphics 20% discount postcard
  • SiriusXM / MINI brochure
  • water bottle
  • AFAR magazine July/August 2012 issue
  • Tetley tea bags
  • Tic Tac candies

Like previous MINI Takes the States events, MINI USA distributed button pins for each host city, events like MINIcross, and sponsors.  Once again there was a special Bulldog button pin only available from “Chief Motorer” Jim McDowell (obtained by giving him the secret handshake).

MINI USA sold several items such as MTTS 2012 shirts and coffee tumblers.  Collectible items included MTTS 2012 metal grille badges ($20), lapel pins ($3), and keychains ($3).  MINI Financial Services handed out free temporary tattoos, as well.


MINI USA Configurator updated for 2013

MINI USA Configurator 2013

MINI USA has updated its MINI Configurator for model year 2013.  New packages are the MINI Green Park (shown above), MINI Hyde Park, MINI Baker Street, and MINI Bayswater.  Some options and packages have changed.  The prices have increased as well.

Bluetooth will be standard on every 2013 MY vehicle (formerly a $500 option), replacing Sirius Satellite Radio.

  • Sirius will now be an option ($250) and includes a one-year subscription.

The Technology package now includes Sirius Satellite radio, Comfort Access in addition to the existing MINI Connected feature. A center armrest (with integrated iPhone adapter pre-wiring) is also included.

A new Premium package ($1,250) has been added for the MINI Hardtop and Clubman that includes the three most-popular options—a Dual-pane panoramic sunroof, Automatic wipers and Automatic climate control. Bundled together, they offer a $500 discount.

Specific Color / Option Changes by Model

MINI Roadster
The semi-automatic roof and rear wind deflector are now standard on all MY 2013 Roadster variants.

The MINI John Cooper Works Countryman is not yet available to configure.

Build your 2013 MINI in the MINI USA Configurator.

MINI JCW Countryman and MINI JCW GP on the Tail of the Dragon

MINI JCW Countryman MINI JCW Countryman

Those MINI enthusiasts attending MINI Takes the States 2012 are getting a special look at two forthcoming John Cooper Works models.  MINI USA is showing the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman and the MINI John Cooper Works GP at the events, but also on the road.  Both vehicles were caught motoring on US 129, better known as The Tail of the Dragon, by


[Source:  See all of the MINI photos of The Tail of the Dragon during MTTS 2012 from 7/6/2012.]