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Virtual Adviser's™ opinion
We are here considering two somewhat similar cars, but we can't deny some of the obvious differences. For a start, they are not even classified under the same segment, with the Mini being a micro car and the Volkswagen representing city car vehicle class. The first one has a BMW-engineered powertrain under the hood, a 3-cylinder, 12-valves 102hp unit, while the other one gets its power and torque from a 4-cylinder, 8-valves 105hp engine designed by Volkswagen.Safety
The first thing to look into here would be the results from European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) tests performed on the two cars. Good thing is that both vehicles got tested, with the same number of safety stars gained in the process. That aside, let's consider some other aspects which affect safety. The second vehicle is a city car and that gives it a marginal advantage over the micro car competitor, at least that's what statistics show. Furthermore, taking kerb weight as an important factor into account, the German car offers a considerable difference of 16% more metal.Reliability
I don't like generalizing things when it comes to reliability, although it does seem that both brands display similar results in faults and breakdowns, all the models observed together. These are the results of an independent reasearch, while our visitors describe reliability of Mini with an average rating of 4.0, and models under the Volkswagen badge with 4.2 out of 5. Unfortunatelly, I don't have enough insight that would allow me to comment in more details on the specific models level. That apart, owners of different cars powered by the same engine as the British car rank it on average as 3.0, while the one under the competitor's bonnet gets 4.6 out of 5.Performance & Fuel economy
Mini is undoubtly more agile, reaching 100km/h in 1 seconds less than its competitor. In addition to that it accelerates all the way to 195 kilometers per hour, 15km/h more than the other car. When it comes to fuel economy the winner has to be the British car, averaging around 4.6 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (61 mpg), in combined cycle. We can't ignore that 17% difference compared to the German car.
Volkswagen appears just a bit more reliable, although the difference is truly marginal. The most important thing when deciding between any two vehicles should always be safety, both passive and active. In my opinion, everything taken into account, the German car offers much better overall protection, which launches it ahead of the other contender. From there things take a different direction, with Mini being considerably quicker, thus putting more smile on driver's face. To make things even better, it consumps less fuel! No mistake, whatever you decide here, but I'd still go for the Mini. In any case that's my personal view, built upon all the data available to me. What should decide here though is the way you feel about the two vehicles, and I hope you'll find my guidelines useful in the process. Also, you could use the oportunity to find out which car, everything taken into account, would be the perfect choice for you in the eyes of the virtual adviser™, out of 12.000+ vehicles we currently have in our database.