World Debut: The Classic Mini Electric

Surprise surprise – MINI has a trick up its sleeve with an all new classic Mini electric. No you won’t see this at dealers and no MINI can’t resurrect a car that would be impossible to pass safety regulations. What you see above is an all electric classic Mini that is meant to evoke the past while point towards the future.

Official Release: With the world premiere of an extraordinary car at the New York International Auto Show (March 30 to April 8, 2018), MINI will once again demonstrate its appetite for purely electric driving with a new take on an icon.

Classic Mini

The classic Mini Electric combines the historic look of the world’s favorite small car with groundbreaking drive technology for tomorrow’s urban mobility. With this unique vehicle, MINI sends out a clear signal demonstrating its commitment to retaining the brand’s unmistakable character whilst embracing innovative zero local emission technology.

The classic Mini Electric is the result of an imaginary journey through time, where the story of classic model is extended by a consecutive chapter. The original from the second half of the 20th century becomes a sympathetic ambassador for environmental awareness and a form of sustainable mobility whose future has just begun.

The urban electro mobility landscape will soon benefit from the arrival of a brand new model, packed with charisma, individual style and driving fun. The MINI Electric Concept was announced at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show, and paves the way for the brand’s first all-electric vehicle which will be unveiled in 2019 – just in time for the 60th anniversary of the classic Mini. The fully electric production vehicle is currently in development, based on the MINI 3-Door Hatch, and will be produced for the first time at MINI Plant Oxford next year.

MINI is once again assuming a pioneering role for sustainable mobility within the BMW Group. In 2008, the brand presented the MINI E – based on the predecessor model of the current MINI 3 Door, about 600 examples were produced and used in a field trial under everyday conditions. This trail played a central role in paving the way for the development of the BMW i3, which has enjoyed worldwide success since 2013 (combined power consumption: 13.6 – 13.1 kWh / 100 km, combined CO2 emissions: 0 g / km).

On the way to a new era in electro mobility, MINI has already taken another step forward. In the MINI Countryman Plug-In Hybrid model (fuel consumption combined: 2.3 – 2.1 l / 100 km, combined power consumption: 14.0 – 13.2 kWh / 100 km combined with CO2 emissions from fuel: 52 – 49 g / km), the combination of an internal combustion engine with an electric drive provides a system output of 165 kW / 224 hp and an intelligent hybrid-specific all-wheel drive system. The capable five-door model in the premium compact segment guarantees driving pleasure on any terrain. The vehicles draws its power from both engines for powerful acceleration, whilst retaining the ability to drive at up to 125 km / h in purely electric mode. With these qualities, the MINI Countryman Plug-In Hyrbid makes a significant contribution to the global market success of the BMW Group’s electrified vehicle fleet.

By contrast, the classic Mini Electric presented in New York will remain unique. A late and carefully restored example of the classic Mini Cooper serves as the basis for this special vehicle. The exterior red paint is complemented by a contrast white roof and characteristic bonnet strip, with the yellow MINI Electric logo in the brand emblem and on the wheel hubs. The electric classic remains true to the brand, both in terms of its visual appearance and driving characteristics. The spontaneous power of its electric motor provides a new dimension to the unmistakable go-kart feeling that helped propel the British small car in its original form to worldwide popularity.

  • sugurunishioka

    Hahaha nice April Foo… Oh wait.

    I’d drop a 20% deposit to get this thing right now.

    • Nick Dawson

      This Classic Mini – converted to electric power – was put on display by BMW at a reception before last week’s New York auto show.

      The car was not on display at the show itself because it is privately owned, and not a company project.

  • Kevin Bartlett

    If only electrification could bring these back with the ability to meet crash standards, emissions wouldn’t matter. I’d take that design over the rocketman myself. Wonder about the range and wish they had interior photos.

  • John McLauchlan

    Didn’t Jaguar just do the exact same with an E-Type in September?

    • Nick Dawson

      The difference, however, is that the Jaguar E Type ‘Zero’ was engineered in-house by Jaguar Land Rover Classic at the company’s new ‘Classic Works’ in Warwickshire, UK, whereas this Classic Mini was converted to electric power by a private owner, and is not a BMW company project.

  • bluzeke

    Sadly, just a one off.

  • ulrichd

    I hope a behind the scenes how it was done video will follow.

  • Gary

    I’m not sure the “evoking the past” part is a net positive for MINI. At least for me, it’s a reminder of just how far the design philosophy has devolved from the original, whether by necessity or not. My mind keeps drifting to the similarly red ’59 Morris Mini body mock-up that Dutchman Jeroen Booij was able to fit completely inside the interior of a ’10 MINI Countryman.

    The restoration is a beautiful work of art. I’m afraid much of the nostalgia would be lost; however, in the absence of engine vibration, the whine of the transmission, and the music of the exhaust note. The driving experience is likely not much different than a golf cart.

    • Nick Dawson

      Autocar has driven the car on New York’s streets and raved about the Classic Mini Electric’s acceleration: “As soon as you hit the throttle pedal, the Mini’s electric motor powers it ahead as if there were no tomorrow, while the engine buzzes in a manner that reminds of Luke Skywalker’s X-Wing Fighter.”

      “The car also retains the go-kart handling and cornering the original was known for, the same combination that led it to beat cars of twice its weight and power in classic Monte Carlo Rallys and track events throughout the 1960s, to the shock of competitors and the delight of the crowds”.

  • Mr Remi

    Would get this in heart beat. For me, it perfectly captures the spirit of MINI.

  • Nick Dawson

    Gloss black trim looks good on the latest F-Series MINIs, but please BMW not on a Classic Mini.

    Even worse, the larger and wider 13″ alloys and wider spats were part of the optional ‘Sport Pack’ offered during the final three years of the Classic Mini’s production – which to some eyes might look good – but it ruined its performance, handling and aerodynamic efficiency.

    1997-2000 Mini Cooper vs Mini Cooper with ‘Sport Pack’

    Top Speed – 90mph vs 84mph 0-60mph – 12.2sec vs 12.8sec