How to Remove Mini Cooper S Bumper, Bumper Carrier, and the Modular Front End

How To Remove Your Mini Cooper S Bumper, Bumper Carrier, and the Modular Front End.

Applications: 1st Generation Mini Cooper S(Guide may work for non S as well.  This guide is based off a 2005 Mini Cooper S.  Years may differ slightly.

Original Post By Gerldoc (Melanie Martin) at the North American Motoring Forums.  Gerldoc is Famous for her Girls Guides post for the Mini Cooper.

This Guide can Be Used to Help install Aftermarket Bumpers Like the one below.

Note that I did not write down the various sizes of the bolts and screws – if I recall correctly, I used 8 mm, 10 mm, 13 mm and 16 mm sockets to remove them. I also used the socket extension.

Similarly, I did not list the torque settings used when replacing all of the bits. Consult a Bentley’s manual or post a query for the answers. If someone wants to list all of the torque settings used in the tutorial and send them to me, I would be happy to insert them.

As with any DIY procedure, be careful, and do it at your own risk!!!

I hope that you find this helpful – it sounds daunting, but really is not bad at all – just be organized!


1) Metric socket wrench set – and a 3 or 4 inch extension will be very handy for this particular task.

2) Jacks and jackstands/ramps.

3) One size 30 Torx bit and driver.

4) Phillips and slotted-head (the regular kind) screwdrivers.

5) Two M8 x 100mm hex-head bolts, or a set of the Mini engine extension pins.

6) If you are removing the dipstick guide tube, a new O-ring.

Not absolutely necessary, but very helpful:

1) A second jack.

2) Needle-nose pliers.

3) A miniature-sized slotted head screwdriver.

4) Short-length/stubby-sized Phillips and slotted-head screwdrivers.

5) A sheet of paper upon which to rest the various bits – labeled under each with the location and side.

6) Masking tape and a pen.

7) Red fingernail polish.

8) A helper or a cardboard box that can fit under the front bumper of the car. It doesn’t have to fit exactly – if it’s up to 6 inches shy, that’s OK.

9) Several NEW expansion rivets/screws. These can be purchased from a Mini dealer for about $2.15 apiece. Since it is very easy to ruin the screws (and rivets) in the process of removing them, new ones would be good to have to replace the buggered-up ones!

10) Your favorite after-the-job-is-done vice!


Jack up the front of the Mini Cooper, and place jack stands under the jack points of the car (there are two, located towards the front of the car and visible under the door sills). It is a good idea to leave the jacks in place as well, in the event the jack stands should fail.

Put the key in the ignition, and turn it so that you can turn your Mini Coopers wheels all the way to one side, and the other. Turn the front wheels to the right first. Looking under the driver’s side wheel well, you will see that there are several plastic screws holding the well to the car. You are going to remove these four at the front of each well:

These are plastic expansion rivets. Removing them is a hassle, because the plastic screw heads easily “cam out”. One relatively easy way to remove them is to use a slotted head screwdriver or needle nose pliers and place the tip in one of the two slots on the top of the rivet. Using the Phillips screwdriver, carefully begin to remove the screw. Once it is a bit loose, use your fingers to unscrew it the remainder of the way – this will help preserve the screw. Once the screw is removed, you can simply pull out the rivet. Do this on each side of the front wheel wells.


Remove the plastic engine shield. This is located directly under the engine on the underside of the car. It is held in place by a Phillips screw at each corner towards the rear of the car. The front part of the shield is sandwiched between the spoiler and the bottom of the bumper.

Remove the three silver-colored hex-head bolts located in the center underneath the spoiler. After you loosen/remove these, the engine shield will slide back for removal. Set it aside.

Remove the two Phillips screws (one per side) located on the underside of the corners of the bumper.


Locate the little “window” cut in the front of each wheel well. Looking in, you will see two screws at 90 degrees to one another. These are the vertical and horizontal bumper adjustment screws. Remove both of these on each side. The 3 or 4 inch socket extension facilitates the removal of the screw that is pointing upward.

Now face the Mini Cooper. Ready your helper, or place a cardboard box, etc. under the front and center of the bumper. Remove the two #30 Torx screws located on either side of the radiator. These secure the bumper to the modular front end. Once these are removed, you can carefully pull away the bumper by tipping it upwards a bit and sliding the tabs at the center of the bumper out from the slots. Have your helper hold it up, or rest it on the box.


Locate the three wires in the headlamp socket. One goes to the indicator light, one to the fog light, and one to the headlamp

I wrote the locations (“fog”, “head”, etc.) of each of the three lights on masking tape, and taped them to the wires, so that I would not plug the wrong light during re-assembly.
Remove the indicator bulb holder by twisting it 90 degrees anti-clockwise and pulling it out. Remove the fog and headlamp bulb holders by using the miniature slotted-head screwdriver and pressing down to lift up the clip, as shown below:

Locate the temperature sensor at the bottom right (as you face the car) inside the bumper. This just slips out from its holder.

Once the wires and sensor are removed, you can pull the bumper from the car. Set in on a blanket/safe area.


The bumper carrier is made of aluminum. It holds the bumper to the modular front end.


There are only a total of 10 screws that attach the bumper carrier to the modular front end, five on each side. You will need to remove all of these:

The socket extension comes in handy to remove screw #3.


You will need to unbolt the crush tubes (one per side) from the subframe, and remove them. I had to use a breaker bar to free mine. If you do not remove these tubes, the modular front end cannot be pulled away from the engine block. The crush tubes are located off to the sides under the front of the car:

Lift off the bumper carrier and set it aside.


Screw the 8M x 100mm bolt/engine extensions into the hole shown in the photo. Once secure, pull the entire modular front end towards you.


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