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Meet Poppy, Dave's 1st gen MINI Cooper S Convertible


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We decided early on that when the mx5 went, we wanted another convertible, something fun and with character to replace her. After looking at BMW's (not really my taste) then Audis (could fall asleep looking at those) we harked back to when we had Carly, our 2nd gen Cooper. Loved that wee car! So the hunt was on for a 1st gen as I prefer the interior/exterior of them and also think the engines are better than the gen2.

After travelling down to Durham to see a Cooper (that was a One!) with approx 57K on the clock (more like 157K the state it was in and the way it drove), we finally found "the one" (only it's not a one! lol) So that 1st one in Durham was an absolute shed, with a boot full of water, every panel marked, wrong interior and "Cooper S" badges all over its rear. It drove like a pile of spanners, brakes rattling/rumbling/knocking, suspension knocks and generally felt horrible. It was also only 90bhp due to being the One model. So that was abandoned and we were going to continue hunting for Coopers....then though stuff it, if we're gonna get one, might as well do it right! So the hunt was on for a cooper S!

Called about 3, which all turned out to be apparently damaged/repaired but not logged and all had no history. then Gayle found one up in Aberdeen. It was one I'd initially dismissed as somebody had sprayed the dash inserts red and that looked tacky to me. Gayle then suggested "you're good at vinyl wrapping, could you not wrap them"? What a bloody good idea! So we went up to see it .........it has been sitting for a while as the chap bought it for his wife but she decided the convertible wasn't for her so he bought her Cooper S gen 2 hatchback. Even though its been sitting about (only done 200 miles since its MOT in April) he'd had the advisories from the mot fixed and she has all her service history etc. She's on a 06 plate with only 72K on the clock, lowest miles one we'd seen in our price range. First Cooper S I've driven and she drives spot on. No knocks from suspension or anything, engine runs sweet! We bought her for 200 quid less than asking price, so well chuffed. Pulled away from the guys house, half a mile down road engine management light came on!! Swear to god you couldn't make it up! We had her on a very long test drive, drove spot on! Funny thing is, even though we had a 3 and a half hour drive ahead of us, she drove it all faultlessly (apart from the wee engine light being on) Read the owners book and looks like it might be something to do with emissions? Thinking egr valve or poss lamba? Not sure but going to get her on the diagnostics to see. The other EML light goes off no probs so bit of a strange one. Anyways, she's not our daily driver so plenty time to fix, as she's only our weekend/good weather car.

Sooo.......here she is, Dave and Gayle's 1st gen MCS R52 (also now known as "Poppy" lol) (these are just the photos from the ad)

drivers side-roof down.png.jpeg







engine bay.png.jpeg

Well happy with her, hope you like!

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We bought an OEM wind deflector for Poppy. Gayle is the queen of bargains, managed to find one that was like new with its original bag etc for only £45 so well happy. These have been going for £120 to £140 on eBay so she did well to find it! Nice wee trip to Grangemouth in Poppy to pick it up (well, the sun was out!!). On the EML front, I ordered a OBD2 reader to get to the bottom of the EML light. Went out to the car today to go to the wee shop, started her up, boom, the EML light went off and hasn't come back on since!! Sods bloody law after buying a code reader!! lol Still, I'm well happy, least it mean it ain't anything major so fingers crossed it stays off. I did possibly find something that may have triggered it (more of that in a sec).

Decided that as it was peeing down with rain when we viewed the car (and it was on a kind of farm so not the kinda ground to lie down on in the rain!) I didnt get as good a look underneath as I would have liked. I assumed that as she looks not bad on top, drives sweet as, then surely she'd be ok underneath right?
Well, had a look today............OMG! She is totally spotless underneath!!!! Suspension arms, subframes, floors are totally rust free! No signs of oil anywhere or anything else. Came out from under the car much to Gayle's amusement going yaaas!! Ya Beauty!! Really sooooo happy with this wee car!
Only thing that had rust is the rear silencer on the drivers side (classed as the front to rear section?) The box is totally gone to the point the whole thing is breaking up in chunks. I tapped it and the whole thing just sounds like crushing rusty metal, so assuming the bafles have also collapsed inside too. Could this have triggered the engine light (as that light is mainly to do with emissions etc)? The actual rear box (pass side rear) looks to be fine. Anyhoo, figured if all I have to worry about is an exhaust then win win. Only other thing is the gearchange......it's mega stiff. It has freed off a little since we bought her, but still not how it should be. I think the clutch is fine, bites almost as soon as the pedal leaves the floor. The car has sat for a long time (has only done 200 miles this year) so thinking it may be with just sitting. Really want to get under and grease up all the linkages etc but unfortunately due to my health, until I get a ramp in the garage I won't be going under. Well, I might be going under, but probably wont be able to get back up again!!! lol 

Even with that, she is such a lovely wee car to drive. Totally get why everyone goes for the Cooper S and not just the Cooper now. Never had so many giggles in a car lol
Oh and interior wise, full dash kit coming tomorrow from the good old E of Bay! Went for silver, know its just the same as all the other Cooper S's but I like the standard dash anyways on these. So that'll be changed this week! Will get some better pics of her tomorrow

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Been busy after work tonight....
New wind deflector in bag all cleaned and made perfect by Gayle and now residing in the boot

oem wind deflector.jpg

The old red dash inserts (on closer inspection found these weren't red factory add ons (even though those are available) but plain silver ones sprayed (badly) red
old red dash.jpg
Tacky as hell imo!

New dash parts arrived from Ebay. have to say these were in perfect condition, n o marks or broken tabs and arrived mega quick.
new dash inserts.jpg
And new dash all fitted..
new dash fitted2.jpg


new dash fitted.jpg

And a couple of better photos as the ad ones were blurry. Also bought the chrome mirroe casings for her (yes, I like chrome on a car!!)
new chrome mirror covers.jpg


Poppy_and _Effy.jpg

So soooooo happy with this wee gem! Did find that the headlight washers aren't working for some reason, not sure why as resevior on pass side is full (as is the windscreen one on the other side). Maybe a fuse hopefully.

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Well, got to the bottom of the engine light! After buying an OBD2 reader (that didn't work! http://newminiscotland.co.uk/forums/images/smilies/incazzato.gif ) got one that does! Turns out its o2 sensor, so least I know now. Looking online, its seems they're a hella lot cheaper than I thought! So will get one ordered up as soon as. Cleared the light for now as it comes on for a few days then goes off again so no biggie. I'm assuming there's no horror stories regarding the o2 sensor fault/replacing it? Had my mate out in Poppy for the first time yesterday..........just like first time I took him out in the mk1 MX5 (aka Mindy) he was smitten! Think his words were something like (in between giggling and laughing!) "I need to get one of these!" lol

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Oh, and have also deep cleaned the interior, seats washed and the leather conditioned, carpets hoovered then cleaned, door/side panels all cleaned and all window glass cleaned. Just the dash to do. Also fitted a nice new Pioneer head unit as didn't like the Sony that was fitted to her. Will get pics later

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Looks nice Dave! Shame about the MX5 but sometimes we need to let our pride n joys go! I like the new silver interior, suits it much better! I've driven a Cooper S before, they're supercharged aren't they? Fast little tikes they are! 


Happy motoring mate ;)

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36 minutes ago, burbleboy said:

Looks nice Dave! Shame about the MX5 but sometimes we need to let our pride n joys go! I like the new silver interior, suits it much better! I've driven a Cooper S before, they're supercharged aren't they? Fast little tikes they are! 


Happy motoring mate ;)

Haha, yeah supercharged Ali. Was another thing that drew me to the 1st gen cooper S over the 2nd gen one. 1st gen charged, 2nd gen onwards are turbo'd. Always preferred superchargers, just like the power being there from the second you hit the loud pedal. Also like how linear it is in delivering the power, and by god does it like to rev!! So chuckable, deffo a worthy replacement me thinks! I'll always be glad we had Mindy though, was a car I'd always dreamed of getting, and gave us our first taste of having a convertible. 

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