The Mini Clubman first launched in the UK in 2007 as a variant of the Mini Hatch and was the largest Mini in production at the time of its debut (although that title is now held by the Mini Countryman.) It was updated to the second generation from in 2015, the model which is still in production today.
The Mini Countryman SUV is the first subcompact crossover style of vehicle produced by BMW under the Mini marque, first launched in 2010. It was then given several facelifts before the launch of the second generation model in 2017. After an update in 2020, the current Mini Countryman feels like the grown up and more serious sibling to the Mini hatchback and is now the biggest Mini that's ever been in production.
Both are great options in the Mini lineup and are remarkably similar cars. Our guide will talk you through how both models compare and where their differences lie.
Both the Mini Clubman and the Mini Countryman have the iconic look of the smaller Mini Cooper Hatch which makes them instantly recognisable.
The Countryman is a little larger in height, width, and length despite having the same wheelbase as the Clubman. It was also facelifted in 2020 to address some highlighted issues, including a new radiator grille, front and rear bumper, and the Union Jack tail lights that are instantly recognisable as belonging to Mini.
The design of the split doors on the Mini Clubman is a nod to the original Mini Clubman from the sixties and are great for accessibility, although we'd recommend avoiding reverse parking if you can to make sure that you can always open them in a car park. It does obscure your rear view vision a little thanks to the split between the two window panes but are ideal for dog owners or for moving luggage in and out.
Either station wagon will give you great personalisation options, so if being able to make your car uniquely yours is important Mini can deliver this on both the Clubman and the Countryman. These include exterior paint colours, roof colours, the addition of bonnet stripes in several colours, and the size and styling of your alloy wheels.
The Countryman features a 40/20/40 split in the rear seats compared to a 40/60 in the Clubman. This makes it a little more versatile to balance carrying passengers and awkward shaped and sized cargo. The additional 90 litres of cargo space (45 if you opt for the hybrid) in the Countryman makes a huge difference too.
Although looking at headroom, the two cars are actually similarly matched so passengers can be comfortable in either model. The Countryman is 183mm wider so passenger space in the rear seat is likely a little more comfortable if you've got a full car.
New to all models from March 2020 onwards was the digital instrument cluster, a five inch screen which replaces the traditional trio of round dials that were a staple of Mini design. This will now include information such as upcoming directions from the sat nav, media information from the infotainment system, and driving information.
There's also interior personalisation options too, which lets you complete your vision of your Mini. Both the seat upholstery and the interior trims can be changed in colour and material on both the Countryman and the Clubman.
Both the Clubman and the Countryman are matched for equipment. As standard you can enjoy LED headlights, adaptive cruise control, rear parking sensors, the touchscreen navigation package, Apple Carplay, heated front seats, and automatic start/stop.
You can also add on additional features through the Premium Pack Plus. This will include features such as power folding exterior mirrors, a rear view camera, a panoramic sunroof, and a self parking feature which will steer the car into a space for you. Opting for John Cooper Works model will also include a wireless smartphone charging pad, and a heated windscreen.
Your only real differences in equipment between the two models come from the plug in hybrid as it comes with a three point pin charging cable and type 2 charging cable, or the additional styling that comes with the Mini Countryman Untamed Edition.
Both models do lack some equipment which other brands may offer as standard, such as a lane departure warning system, but have worked on improving other offerings such as the digital dashboard that is now standard.
The Mini range shares the same engines across their models, the Cooper and Cooper S. These are a 1.5 litre and 2.0 litre respectively which makes it easy to understand the offerings on the Clubman and the Countryman if switching from another car in the Mini brand.
The main difference when comparing the Mini Clubman vs Countryman is the option for a plug in hybrid engine with the Mini Countryman. This is a 1.5 litre petrol engine supported by an electric battery and motor which supplies 125HP and only produces 41 g/km of CO2 emissions compared to 144 g/km on the Countryman's full petrol engine.
The hybrid is also the most fuel efficient option available across both the Clubman and the Countryman. Mini advise that you can see a combined mpg of as much as 156.9 compared to 47.1 for the 1.5 litre engine and 44.8 for the 2.0 litre engine on the Clubman. It is also the only engine to offer all wheel drive, the fully petrol engines are front wheel drive only.
Perhaps the only negative about the plug in hybrid Mini Countryman is the increase in price - it adds £7785 onto the base cost of the car.
Either the Mini Clubman or the Mini Countryman is a great choice for a larger car from the Mini range and it really does come down to two things: the amount of space that you need and the type of engine you want.
If you're looking for something greener with better fuel economy then the Countryman is the best option for you but if you prefer the style of the barn doors and don't need quite as much room then the Clubman will suit you better.