If your Ford had a Matthew McConaughey, it would be a Lincoln

What do you know about R50 and R56 Minis?

As I’ve been shopping around for a stick-shift hatchback, I’ve noticed several late-build R50 Mini Coopers and a couple early-build R56 Mini Coopers that are both in good condition and within my budget. They’re a little smaller and perhaps less economical than what I was looking for but the style, form factor, and reportedly fun personality have turned my head.

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What worries me at this point is that they’re old German cars built in the UK. I know we have a few long-term Mini owners around here, so what do you think? Is an R50 or R56 Mini a good daily option for someone who isn’t afraid to get their hands dirty maintaining a decade-old BMW? Or are these cars maintenance nightmares that will leave me wishing I bought a Hyundai?

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