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I have a 2005 Mini Cooper convertible. Earlier this year the cigarette lighter quit working, then something went wrong with the mechanism on the passenger side that makes a connection to make the convertible top unhook so that the top can open, now the door on the driver’s side will not open while I’m in it so I have to have the window open then reach outside to open the door. Are these things related? I contacted the Mini dealer in Orlando about the top not going down. Of course they can’t tell me much without looking at it but they said the worst case scenario would be replacing the whole mechanism at $2800. I will take it there on Nov. 11th (my next business day off) to have them take a look. Is there any information you can provide in preparation of having my Mini serviced for these items?

There are all kinds of microswitches and relays that make the top work (or not). Everything has to happen in the proper sequence. A friend of mine took his to the (semi) local dealer for an estimate. They said it had bent parts and would cost about $1000 to fix. Then he found a local independent shop that specializes in convertible top installation. They fixed it for $220. It had no bent parts, just misadjusted switches. Call some top shops and see if any really know their Minis. Is there a Mini club in your area? Members may have some suggestions. Also try this: and this: Someone out there has your answer, and it won’t cost $2800.