There’s a super-cool new all-electric MINI in the pipeline - and here it is being put through its paces in ice-cold Sweden.
Of course, an electric MINI is nothing new.
The current MINI Electric has decent power of 184 HP and a range of up to 145 miles between charges, ensuring it keeps pace with the likes of the Honda e or the electric Fiat 500.
But MINI plans to improve on that distance you can travel between charges. And by the looks of these winter testing pics, the next generation electric MINI will boast some subtle styling tweaks while still remaining true to the historic go-kart we all know and love.
A spokesperson for the firm says: “MINI is launching its fifth generation with the MINI 3-Door Hatch as the first model of the new MINI family.
“With its vehicle concept geared towards fully electric from the outset, it’s ideally suited to deliver hallmark MINI handling and creative use of space - plenty of room inside and a small footprint.”
So far we don’t know what battery it’ll have, or what the range will be.
But when you consider the Fiat 500e can cover almost 200 miles between charges, we’d expect a big boost on the MINI’s current range of 145 miles.
There’s also a good reason why MINI is testing the new hatch in what looks like the Arctic Circle. Electric batteries perform less well in cold conditions, and MINI will want to iron out any of those issues long before the new hatch hits UK roads.
The spokesperson adds: “The electric drivetrain, high-voltage battery, power electronics and charging technology of the new MINI prototypes are already demonstrating their high degree of maturity at extreme temperatures below freezing.
“Snow-covered roads and specially prepared areas on frozen lakes serve as ideal test tracks and the test engineers can precisely tune the spontaneous power development of the electric motor, the control systems for optimising traction, cornering behaviour, suspension and damping characteristics as well as the character of the steering and braking system.”
The other important thing to note is that MINI isn’t chucking the baby out with the bath water - if you still want a traditionally-fuelled MINI in 2023, you can still get one.
And why wouldn’t you, when you’ve got the ballistic, 306 hp MINI John Cooper Works to lease and play with?
Stefanie Wurst, Head of the MINI brand said: “MINI is on a path of growth and heading towards a fully electric future. Our iconic MINI 3-Door Hatch maximises the experience for our customers through its electrified go-kart feeling combined with digitalised touchpoints - and a clear focus on sustainability with a minimal environmental footprint."
Watch this space for future updates.
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