AKRON (Jan. 24, 2002) — Either Goodyear or Pirelli run-flat tires will be on different versions of the 2003 Mini Cooper when the new car makes its scheduled debut in the U.S. in March.
Goodyear Eagle NCT 5 EMT (Extended Mobility Technology) run-flat tires are a summer-tire option on all Mini Cooper and Mini Cooper S cars coming to America, Goodyear said. V-speed rated versions of the 195/55R15 run-flat are approved for the BMW-made car and are available in 16- and 17-inch wheel diameters. Those tires are being developed in Fulda, Germany, and Lawton, Okla., according to Akron-based Goodyear. A tire-pressure monitoring system is standard equipment with the company's EMT run-flats.
Goodyear said Mini Coopers with run-flats will come without spare tires, but a spare will be required for those shod with yet-to-be-approved conventional all-season tires.
A Pirelli Tire North America spokesman said the Pirelli Euforia will be fitted on the Mini Cooper S — a special version that comes with 17-inch tires. The Euforia is produced at Pirelli's new MIRs factory in Germany. The tire maker also is fitting the Mini with the P3000E, in 15- and 16-inch versions and sizes 175/65R15 and 175/60R16.
The original British-made Mini has not been sold in the U.S. since the early 1960s. Sticker price for the new base model 115-hp Mini Cooper will be $16,850 including destination charges, while the 163-hp Mini Cooper S will retail at $19,850, Goodyear said.