Engine of a Mini Seven racing Mini
Photo: Copyright © 2009 Eelke Blok

... hello Checkmate

This post is a few days overdue, but I have been busy working and... driving my new car.

As I have reported before, the Mini2 was due for delivery on the 2nd of january. End of last week I did receive a slightly troubling email which said that the lease company received a change for the date and the car was now going to be delivered in the second week of the new year. A quick phone call to the dealer told me that the appointment still stood, and that they had no idea where that idea came from.

Sunday (1st of january) I had already had a peek inside and lo and behold, there stood a Cooper Checkmate, with JCW exhaust and, since it was parked with the backend to the window, I could also see the auto aircon in the dash (upgrade from standard Checkmate). Considering these are two of the three points where my Checkmate would differ from standard, this really had to be it, and a check with the insurance papers I already received confirmed it: this was my car! However... the car had the horseshoe alloys (Flame Spoke, standard Checkmate wheels), while I had decided after a lot of toing and froing (looks versus weight) to go for the looks of the (rather heavy, according to most sources on the Internet) S-Spoke wheels. As my appointment was only at 13:00, on the 2nd I called to the dealer first thing in the morning: "I think I saw my car, but it doesn't have the right wheels yet." "Oh yeah, darn, well, that can be fixed."

The rest of the morning of the 2nd we spent cleaning the Peugeot 307 because it has to go to another colleague. After that we had a bite to eat and then (although a bit early) we went to the dealer, where we arrived a few minutes before 1.

The car was under a nice cover and the S-spokes were peeking from under it, so that was taken care of.

To make a long story short: totally cool. Mini Hilversum deserves a thumbs up for the smooth way with which the whole thing was handled (just too bad that the car couldn't be delivered before the 15th of november), and I am really happy with my choice of the S-Spokes, I think the car has a solid look to it. The S-spokes make the overall look a little bit less wild (with the checkers on the sides and the striping on the bonnet), where the Flame Spokes go a bit too far for my personal taste.

So, I am totally happy. This is Mini-ing, as daily transportation again. Only now I realise how I missed blasting across a roundabout and taking a corner the Mini way. The Checkmate also gets all the right looks. The white Cooper certainly isn't short of attention, but on monday I have seen a boyracer's eyes rolling from his tupperware'd Golf when he saw the Checkmate. Don't worry, the white Cooper is still the favourite, but this is a great alternative for daily traffic, so that the classic is nice and dry inside, protected from weather.

Here is a pic that Demelza took on the morning of tuesday the 3rd, after I dropped her of.

P.s.: I created a new section for the blog, specifically for the Checkmate. New Mini will remain reserved for everything about me getting my New Mini, and that chapter is now officially closed.

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