I bought this MINI Cooper Air Intake System – M7 Speed MAXX-FLO for a variety of reasons including the fact that it makes the engine compartment look a lot sexy, it seems to add a tiny bit of power, and it substantially improves the way the engine sounds.
Now is it possible that the perceived power increase is primarily due to the more aggressive sound inside the car and not really the MINI Cooper Air Intake? Sure. Do I care? Not even a little.
The first thing you will notice when you open the MINI Cooper Air Intake box from M7 Speed is that this is an extremely well-made item. Any concerns you had about paying this much for what amounts to a replacement air filter for your MINI vanish. The base that everything attaches to is a solid chunk of metal which could seriously hurt you if you dropped it on your foot.
Everything in the MINI Cooper Air Intake box is like that, very well made. This exudes quality and over-engineering. If you are looking for something cheap and flimsy, just barely enough to get the job done, look somewhere else.
Installation of the MINI Cooper Air Intake is pretty straight forward. The hardest part I had was getting the old airbox and the duct that went up to the front grill out of the car. The best advice I can give is to be slow, deliberate, and careful so you do not yank lose any connectors or hoses on the engine.
Once the old airbox and duct are removed install the air filter on the new base plate, then the hose that connects to your engine air intake. Attach the hose to the engine air intake and press the base plate portion of the MINI Cooper Air Intake down into the grommets that held the old airbox, done.
Once all of the MINI Cooper Air Intake is attached and tightened take it out for a ride and you will immediately notice you can hear the turbo and pop-off valve much clearer making the engine sound much more aggressive. I doubt you can hear any of this outside the vehicle but I didn’t buy the MINI for other people’s enjoyment so I really didn’t care. I personally also noticed a little more pep although I have to admit this was not installed by itself but with a few other components that might have accounted for the additional pep.
It could also be my imagination honestly. The best piece of outside verification I can offer is that one of the mechanics I take my car to has a similar year Countryman S his daughter drives although stock, and he has made mention several times how much more powerful Buster is than his daughter’s car. These comments were made after I had done a lot of performance mods and not just the MINI Cooper Air Intake, but that was indeed a part of those mods. Take it for what you will.
The only complaint I have, and it isn’t M7 Speed’s fault, is that taking the air filter on and off is pretty difficult on Buster, primarily because I have a racing strut tower brace installed which runs right across the top of the MINI Cooper Air Intake. It is possible that if they had made multiple slots, or made the one they have deeper, for the screwdriver to fit down in there and get to the hose clamp holding the filter on, it could be easier. But that is just a guess.
Overall I give the M7 Speed MAXX-FLO five out of five stars, it is an awesome MINI Cooper Air Intake and well worth the asking price.