R56 storage

We all know our MINIs are small, so it’s hard to find places to store things … given that, you wonder why the R56 designers decided to make it HARDER! Maybe they’re hoping to trigger sales of the forthcoming Clubman πŸ˜‰
So while the cupholders grew in size, the door pockets shrunk dramatically – and are harder to access due to the tiny gap between door panel and armrest/handle; more frustrating is the shrunken glove box – it’s apparently been designed to hold the MINI manuals, and nothing else!


I tried a couple of aftermarket glove box organizer “solutions” – many thanks Peter at MinSpeed – but really there’s no great solution, the R56 glove box simply isn’t suited as well as our favorite R50/53 GBO. Anyway, this is how GBMINI#5’s glovebox looks at present:

This shelf is sturdy and looks practical, but there’s no way to attach it to the glove box – it sits loose, resting on the MINI manuals. Maybe it’s because GBMINI#5 has so many manuals (with navigation, iPod, etc) … or maybe the designers simply forgot that people have stuff, even when they drive a MINI πŸ™‚

12 thoughts on “R56 storage

  1. Ian, you forgot that there is no way to do a parcel shelf either!! This is what I REALLY miss! I’ve looked at ways to have one custom injected molded, but, it looks like MINI didn’t leave any space behind the panel either on the R56 to make it work.

  2. Well that’s not good, less stowage. I’m lov’n these critiques. I have a GB organizer in my ’04 MCS. I don’t believe it attaches either but never saw that as a problem nor has that caused any breakage or rattling?

  3. I dunno, I can fit the manual, gloves, mini maglite, tire pressure gauge, old school map and some alcohol swabs (wiper cleaners) in the R56 glove box. That was all transfered out of an R50.
    The secret compartment is a good storage site for things like portable GPS devices and sat radio recievers.

  4. The pre’07 GBOs fit snug/tight into the sides and top/bottom of the glovebox, “locked” in place. There are no sides/top in the ’07 design.

  5. I’ve got plenty of stuff in mine – lots of manuals and docs, loose papers, stuff from the Mini Adventure Field Kit. Still some room to spare, but definitely could use some organization. Keep in mind those organizer shelves look thick and will take away from the overall space.

  6. Ian, I really appreciate your unbiased reviews of the R56. You discuss the car from the perspective of the everyday MINI driver and we can all relate to that.

    It also seems to me that you LIKE the R56 but you are not in LOVE with it like with any other of your previous MINIs.

  7. That linked one on MinSpeed isn’t the one pictured above – I tried that one first, and it “locks in place” with the sharp points of the two end tabs.
    But it’s only “locking” in to a slight lip of the rubber bottom of the glove box, and for me at least it wouldn’t stay in place. So I switched to the one above.
    I think I’ll end up not using any sort of “organizer” and just accepting less practical use of the R56 glove box.

    And yes, the R56 is a fine car – I think for an average owner it’s a better MINI than the R53. But, it’s less “thrilling” and if you’ve owned and loved an R53, you’ll notice some negatives (like the engine sound / lack of supercharger)

    I’m in Florida right now, driving a rental PT Cruiser. It looks great – but the engine is pathetically under-powered, the steering is stupid, and it’s only getting 18mpg! ANY MINI is way better πŸ™‚

  8. The glove box has a useable space that is shaped like a triangular wedge. If anything piles up to the front or gets forward of the hinge guides at each side it blocks it from latching. I’ve found that I’ve gotten used to it and where to place everything in the shuffle before I close it. Passenger’s however can’t get it to latch, although my daughter has caught on to the shuffling scheme in her 6 months at shotgun. Still remains that pulling the manual out creates a complete mess and disturbs everything in the box. There is a real need for a good solid insert if somebody has the smarts to make one.

    I’m hauling the manuals, notebook, tire pressure guage, gps charger, gps window mount, cell phone charger, and associated cords.

    My “secret” compartment has 3 mp3 cds in slim cases leaving a space to stach my gps if I need to leave it in the car.

    My side pocket is fine – I don’t recall how large or accessible the R50’s side pocked is when I had a loaner for a weekend, but the R56 pocket works for me. I’ve got a sun glass case, ice scraper, flannel rag, and passenger puke bag in there, no problem with access or room. One thing I did notice about the R50 was I could not actually rest my arm on the armrest, and the fact I can put my elbow in there makes the R56 cockpit feel like it has more room.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s