MINI Cooper calls it a “guide support,” but it's most commonly called a front upper strut mount. We can't even begin to count how many of these we have replaced over the years. Over time, they start to flatten out due to lots of bumps in the road. It just takes one good hit from a pot hole to rip the rubber around the top. It might start out as a small rip, but it eventually makes its way around in no time. You may even hear a creaking when turning the wheels when parked, or you may even hear a clunk if it has been worn out for a long time. It becomes an obvious problem because you will have way more camber on that particular side than you should. Once it has ripped, the whole weight of the car is pushing down on it and you can see the big gaping rip. See the above photos of the failed units and what happens to aftermarket units. We find that all aftermarket ones fail quickly and you will be replacing again in less than a year.
It's also likely that you have some mushrooming on the upper strut tower mount. Get a 2x4 and a big hammer and give it some love - back to flat (this is how MINI does it!), before you install the new one. While you're at it, add a set of Craven Speed STD's to keep it from happening again. We recommend a professional installation, since you are working with coil springs, but it can be done at home if you know what you're doing. Make sure the grease seal is transferred over from the old one. We also highly recommend an alignment, especially if you've hit a pothole or switched tires around. We recommend doing a regular alignment, about once a year.
This is the official MINI part, that happens to be sold by another company, who took the MINI logo off. This is NOT a cheap, knock off part where the bearings fall out. This is OEM quality, at a lower price!