I cross-shopped at first. My Dad bought an S model when the new versions first came out several years ago. He loves it and, while I have never driven it myself, it does have superb handling and quick reflexes.I didn't.
The Mini's price isn't mini. Also I've heard too many quality issues with the Mini, while Ford's quality has been increasing to the number 1 spot for non luxury brands.
My Ford dealer is about ten minutes away for service, the Mini dealer is about an hour on a good traffic day.
Fiesta time is Monday
They exist, it's just few make it to the US, and this is, I believe, a general US auto industry hang-up: subcompacts are bought to be ecoboxes, compacts can sometimes be sporty and sell. It's completely BS, but outside a few intriguing options like a turbo mini that costs as much as some turbo compact cars (saw some 2010 mazdaspeed3s being cleared out for $22K new recently, similar to to the Mini Cooper S's $22300 MSRP), there's not a lot of competition in the field. An ecoboost I4 1.6l engine option for the Fiesta is the best hope here, probably.Ford are you listening?