Q: I have just bought a 2002 MINI Cooper and I love it, but it has one problem and that’s the trip screen on the tachometer. It isn’t fitted with the trip computer so should just display the outside temperature, but the screen is permanently blank. I’m fairly positive that the sensor is working because when you turn the ignition on and it’s icy outside, it still beeps to warn you. So I’m guessing it could be a failure in the gauge or wiring? Are there any checks I can do myself?
Q: I recently bought my wife a 2002 MINI Cooper which came fitted with the original 16-inch wheels, shod with Goodyear 195/55R/16 runflat tyres. They are a bit shot so I looked at replacing them, but I was horrified at the cost. There seem to be differences of opinion as to whether the original MINI 16-inch rims can safely accept ‘conventional’ tyres instead. Is this change of tyre spec okay? If not, I’ve been advised to buy a set of replacement alloys but 15-inch in size and fit larger 65R tyres, as they give a smoother ride. What is your reaction to this?
Q: I would like to improve the power on my stock R53 Cooper S but I’m on a limited budget, so is reducing the supercharger pulley the most cost-effective mod for performance gains? I’ve heard that going for this makes the supercharger spin faster and work harder than normal to produce more boost and low down torque. I’d like to know more about how this works and the pros and cons of going for different reduced pulley sizes?
Q: I’m considering buying a 2006 John Cooper Works GP after being inspired by reading the Nov-Dec 2011 issue, but although I realise these are special editions and sought-after, I have no idea what I should be looking out for when going to look at a potential purchase. Are there known issues/faults relevant to this particular model? Can someone in the know give me a few pointers? Thanks!