Join Date: Apr 2011
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The MINI evolved
by Colum Wood
If I didnít know better, Iíd think the serpentine cord of asphalt Iím shooting up into the hills outside Ponce, Puerto Rico was a one-way road. Itís so tight even a MINI feels, wellÖ not very mini, and the reality of the situation hits me just as Iím trying to avoid an oncoming circa-1980 Toyota coupe from doing the same. Somehow managing not to kiss mirrors, I drop a wheel off the road and across a localís front lawn, something thatís far from unusual here.
With a rainforest-esque canopy covering the route, and miles and miles of snaking blacktop ahead, few automakers build products better suited to these conditions.
The highway provides a different sort of adventure. With a surprising number of drivers setting their personal speed limit at well below the posted number and the concept of using the left lane for passing as foreign as I feel on this Caribbean island, the disproportionately high number of Mitsubishis and Suzukis are like moving pylons for my car, the new Paceman.
The latest in the growing MINI lineup, the Paceman is what the company calls the worldís first sports activity coupe.