It’s the Mini Electric, if you buy one in Britain, where this car is made. If you’re from anywhere else in the world, then what’s confusing is the Mini Cooper SE. And wherever you buy it, you’ll always get a neon green tinted “Cooper S” badge on the trunk. What’s underneath, however, remains exactly the same. Welcome to the age of the all-electric Mini. This could be a big problem.
A great Mini, you say?
Yes, because the Minis are objectively desirable. BMW’s reborn city car still sells strongly, offers strong residual values and drives in a slightly cartoonish but ultimately endearing style. These are the kind of car owners they give names to. It’s cute and well-organized enough that high prices have never stood in the way of its runaway success. And now there’s one you plug in instead of filling.
What is its speed with electrons as fuel?
The front wheels are powered by a single electric motor that generates 182bhp, the same power as a 2.0-litre Cooper S petrol. However, the Mini Electric is heavier: 145 kg more than a Mini Cooper S with automatic gearbox.
Yet torque is instantaneous, the center of gravity is lower, and Mini has worked tirelessly (using battery data gleaned from the BMW i3) to pack the cells into the shell of the three-door hatchback. So while it’s not the roomiest car in its class to begin with, Mini can proudly claim that legroom and boot space haven’t been gobbled up by pesky batteries in any way.
Hurrah! But is range still enough?
Type the words ‘Mini’ and ‘Electric’ into Google and the first predicted search to come up is ‘Mini electric range’. So here’s the news: Mini claims a range of between 124 and 144 miles. In direct comparison to a gas-jumping Cooper S that will average 30 seconds per gallon and get over 300 miles per tank, that looks abysmal. Mais Mini est provocant : le choix de ce type de compromis d’autonomie permet de gérer la taille, le poids et le temps de charge de la batterie – sans parler du coût – et convient à l’utilisation que Mini prédit que les gens utiliseront Car. So if they did the math right, this is going to be a freak.
The good news is that the chassis team wasn’t just down latest pub while the marketing managers get to work…
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Our choice of the range.
What’s the verdict?
The Mini Electric is a very complete small electric vehicle. It retains almost everything we love about a standard Mini Cooper S, but it goes faster where it counts and has zero local emissions. It shows that the hot hatch will have a future as an electric vehicle. And that reinforces something we learned with the VW e-Golf: that an electric car doesn’t need to be radically free to be successful. Filling a car we already know and love with batteries can, with proper execution, be a good tactic.
However, the Mini asks you to understand some truths. BMW could have given it more autonomy. But that would have made it heavier, more expensive, longer to load, and would take up space in the cabin. So he studied a lot of data on Mini owners, determined that the average Cooper S drives 26 miles a day, or about 180 miles a week, and shaped the performance of the Mini Electric based on that summary, which doesn’t require just a few refills to slip into the lives of the average Mini audience unnoticed.
It looks like a significant addition to the Mini family. We’ve always championed the lightweight and compact design of the BMW i3, but that’s not the investment required, so now it’s Mini’s turn to see if the conventional approach can do the numbers.
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Source : topgear.com