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2011-2016 MINI Countryman

Upgrading the stereo system in your Countryman
2011 • 2012 • 2013 • 2014 • 2015 • 2016

mini countryman

In brief: This Crutchfield Research Garage article gives you an overview of your Countryman's stock stereo system and your aftermarket upgrade options. Use our vehicle selector to find the gear that will fit your car. 

Overview of the MINI Countryman

When the Countryman debuted in 2011, the idea of a Mini SUV was somewhat disturbing to brand purists. We're not sure why, because a bigger Mini isn't exactly a new concept. In fact, the "Countryman" name could be found on Mini estate (station) wagons back in the sixties. The old cars are still prized by collectors today, and the new Countryman promptly became the second-most popular model in the modern line-up.

This Countryman is bigger in every way than its diminutive ancestors, of course, plus it's faster, safer, and holds a lot more stuff. Parked next to an Escalade, it still looks tiny, but parked next to an original Countryman, it looks like, well, an Escalade. It's all in the perspective, really, but these are neat cars and they're a great combination of fun and practicality. Which is what many people said about the original Minis.

While there's not much to be done with this car's factory stereo gear, you can still make some healthy improvements to the sound quality. Read on to learn the do's, don'ts, and probably-shouldn'ts of Countryman audio upgrades.

mini countryman radio

If it's not obvious enough from the photo, the stock radio is pretty much impossible to replace (Crutchfield Research Photo)

The Countryman's factory stereo system

This car's option sheet was a lengthy one, but the stereo systems basically boiled down to a 6-speaker AM/FM/CD with satellite radio, HD radio, and (depending on the year) AUX and/or USB inputs and or a 10-speaker Harman Kardon system with all that and surround sound, too. There was also the MINI Connected system, which added a stereo display to the centrally located speedometer, plus a console-mount controller. Navigation was also available.

mini countryman radio cd player

The radio is basically a part of the speedometer. Plus, there's an airbag issue to contend with. (Crutchfield Research Photo)

(Not) Replacing your factory radio

Removing and replacing the Countryman's factory radio isn't impossible, but it's really not advisable. 

For one thing, the radio is built into the gigantic speedometer in the center of the dash, so nothing would fit there anyway. For another thing, just getting to the radio is a fiendishly complex process that involves a tedious amount of panel and part removal. This is not a job for the casual weekend DIY-er.

And for yet another thing (the main thing, actually), you'd have to remove the airbag located under the glove box. We do not recommend doing this. Messing around with airbags is incredibly unwise, so just don't.

Besides, the stock radios already do pretty much everything the modern driver would ask. When it comes to performance, functionality, and connectivity, you could do a lot worse. Plus, the stock set-up just looks cool.

mini countryman front door

The base model's front doors house 4" full-range speakers (Crutchfield Research Photo)

Replacing your factory speakers

The standard 6-speaker Countryman has 4" speakers in the front and rear doors. They're all pretty easy to get to, though there aren't a ton of aftermarket replacements available at this time. The ones that are out there are a pretty nice, though. Enter your vehicle info to see all the speakers that fit your MINI.

For both the front and rear doors, the process begins with using a panel tool to pry off the door pull's outer cover, starting at bottom edge. That'll expose a pair of Torx T-20 screws, which you'll need to remove. Once that's done, carefully pry out the sides of the door panel to carefully (we mean it) release 17 retaining clips. Disconnect the door release cable and harnesses, then remove the panel.

mini countryman front door speaker

The speakers are attached to the door panels (Crutchfield Research Photo)

Remove the three 8mm nuts securing the speaker to the door panel, then remove the old speaker. You'll need to fabricate your own brackets (or use universal backstraps, hot glue, or silicone) to install your new speakers. There's no wiring harness available, either, so you'll either need to splice into the factory wiring or use Posi-Products speaker connectors to make the necessary connections.

The rear door speaker removal/replacement process is pretty much identical to what you did up front. 

Detailed stereo and speaker removal instructions

MasterSheet image
With step-by-step disassembly instructions and plenty of up-close, detailed photos, our exclusive Crutchfield MasterSheet™ takes the guesswork out of removing the factory stereo and speakers. It's free with your Crutchfield order, or you can purchase one separately for just $9.99.

Harman Kardon system

Removing the front door speakers from the 10-speaker HK version goes a lot like it does on the standard system. The front speaker array consists of a sail panel tweeter, a mid-range, and a woofer that descend down the door in that order.

The rear speaker set-up is similar to the base model, and all the disassembly details can be found in the illustrated step-by-step instructions included with your Crutchfield speaker purchase.

If you know something we don't, please share it with your fellow enthusiasts in the comments section. 

Tools needed: Panel tool, Torx T-20 driver, 8mm socket, ratchet and extension

Shop for speakers that fit your MINI Countryman

mini countryman rear woofers

The underseat woofers can be replaced, but it's not easy. (Crutchfield Research Photo)

Rear woofers

The rear woofers are cleverly located under the front seats, and, unless you live for car-quaking bass, they're pretty decent. That's nice, because they're not the easiest things to remove and replace.

Getting to them involves unscrewing the bolts that hold the seat to the floor and tilting the seat forward. Once it's secure, you'll need to remove the four screws that secure the speaker grille. Once the sub is loose, you'll need to cut and remove some of the carpeting around the sub to remove it.

You can totally do this and, heck, you just might. We couldn't, though, because it wasn't our car and the carpet-cutting thing wasn't okay. Since we stopped short of removing and measuring the subs, this is where we have to stop giving advice.

We do know how to do the job, though, and all that info will be included with your vehicle-specific Crutchfield disassembly instructions. 

Once the new speakers are in place and you've tested them out, you'll be ready to put the seats back in place. Make absolutely certain that the seats are secured properly.

mini countryman cargo area

There's a bit of room for bass in the cargo area (Crutchfield Research Photo)

Bass in your Countryman

The Countryman is big for a Mini, but it's still small compared to lots of other vehicles. So, while there is room for a subwoofer enclosure, there's not a ton of it. You have a 43" W x 13" H x 22"/18" D space to work with, so all hope is not lost, but adding big-time bass will involve some big-time creativity on your part.

On the upside, a car this size doesn't need a big subwoofer if you don't. A compact powered subwoofer will give you a much-improved bottom end sound without devouring the entire cargo area.

Of course, you'll have to connect those subs and/or amps to the receiver somehow. There are ways to do this that don't involve messing with the receiver, like tapping into the speaker level inputs. It all depends on your DIY comfort level, of course, but if you're handy, the passionate and knowledgeable online MINI community has some good info on how to add more bass to your Countryman.


A portable GPS is a great idea for your Mini

Other options for your Countryman

Here are some other upgrade ideas for your Countryman.

Add a GPS

If you don’t have factory navigation, you don't have to miss out on driving directions. You're probably used to using your phone around town, but a portable GPS makes sense if you're on the highway a lot. You'll get turn-by-turn directions, traffic updates, and everything you need to make your road trip go smoothly, and you can save your phone for other tasks. Plus, when you get where you're going, you can put the GPS in your pocket and use it to find points of interest around town.

Floor mats

Daily driving can take a toll on your Countryman's carpeting. WeatherTech floor mats and liners will help protect your floors from dirt and damage.


Installing a security system in your Countryman isn't easy (security systems rarely are), but it's definitely a good idea. Our Crutchfield Advisors can help figure out what you need to get the job done, but we usually recommend taking your car and new gear to a professional installer.

Shop for car security systems for your MINI Countryman

Find the audio gear that fits your car or truck

Visit our Outfit My Car page and enter your vehicle information to see stereos, speakers, subs, and other audio accessories that will work in your vehicle.

  • Jonathon from Maricopa

    Posted on 11/16/2021

    Hey! I have a 2013 Mini cooper R56 Countryman Hatchback S.and I'm looking to put a system in it..I have the new Stereo for it, but I know it'll be difficult, is there anything else I need?? Since it's not a plug and play And etc

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 11/17/2021

    Jonathon, As we say in the article, removing and replacing the Countryman's factory radio is not recommended, mostly because because you'd have to remove the airbag located under the glove box. And also because there aren't any aftermarket radios that fit in that space, of course. If you need some help choosing new speakers, though, give us a call!
  • Josh B. from Charlotte

    Posted on 2/23/2021

    I need an install kit for my 2012 Countryman All4 S as all the ones I have seen do not have a place for the traction control button, sport mode button and so on that are located below the window controls. Any suggestions?

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 2/24/2021

    Josh, At the moment, radio replacement is not recommended for your car. You can upgrade your speakers, though. Give us a call and talk to one of our advisors. We can help you choose the right gear and give you the right advice on how to install it.
  • Liz from Long Island, NY

    Posted on 9/3/2020

    Hi, I have a 2015 Mini Countryman All4s. The display is quite different from the 2014 & the 2016, which really leaves me with "sick figure" back up sensors and other outdated features. I'm not worried about the sound, I'd really love a back up cam! Everywhere I search having the dual moonroof looks to make a tough installation as well - not like it used to be in my older cars...Also I've been told a starter might be virtually impossible to work with my car ... any ideas?

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 9/8/2020

    Liz, Thanks for the questions. I've sent this along to our sales team, and they'll be contacting you via email soon. For immediate help, you can contact them via phone or chat.
  • Brady Peterson from Kennewick

    Posted on 7/3/2020

    I am fortunate enough to own a 2014 Mini Cooper Paceman S All4 John Cooper Works Edition (that's a mouth full...) It has the 10 speaker Harmon Kardon stereo system with Display screen built into the speedometer. That being said, there are not a ton of options as far as upgrades go available. I did find some speakers....but I opted for just the sub-woofer upgrade. They arrive today and will get installed over the weekend. They promise twice the bass without a power input upgrade....I will give a review after I get a chance to test them out. If I like them I may give the door speakers a shot to see what I get. As for the Article above, I can't argue with anything here. I would love to upgrade my head unit, but there are just not many....if any....options out there, and should ONLY be tackled by an electrical engineer with tons of time on his hands to navigate and figure stuff out. Anyone with any suggestions, please comment here. Looking forward to see what you've got.

    Commenter image

    Jon Paul from Crutchfield

    on 7/6/2020

    Brady, Thanks! And if you have time, visit our Custom Car Showroom and tell us all about your car.

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