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SAFETY | 9 out of 10
All U.S. 2008 MINI Cooper S Clubman models get a raft of standard safety gear, including six airbags, anti-lock brakes, electronic brake force distribution, Cornering Brake Control (CBC), and Brake Assistant. Stability and traction control with hill-start assistance are also standard. Drivers who worry about driving a manual gearbox in hilly areas will appreciate the hill-start feature, which holds the vehicle in place to give drivers time to move their right foot from the brake pedal to the accelerator.
Reviewers at TheCarConnection.com expect the 2008 MINI Cooper S Clubman, although a small car, to perform well in crash tests once the IIHS and NHTSA have their way with it. The smaller Cooper--MINI derives the Clubman from it--is highly rated in crash tests, and the Clubman shares enough of the car's architecture to expect that it will also earn good safety scores.
That controversial third door on the passenger side shows its utility in the safety department, where Car and Driver praises the door as "quite the marvel. It has an airbag, a seatbelt for the front passenger" and also aids in interior styling.
The front seatbelts on the Clubman also feature pre-tensioners that increase survivability in case of an accident. Kelley Blue Book mentions the car's standard "tire-pressure monitoring system," which both serves as a safety feature and helps maintain peak fuel economy by alerting the driver when the tires are underinflated.
The 2008 MINI Cooper Clubman has standout safety features but hasn’t been tested yet.