MINI USA has priced the electric MINI Cooper SE aggressively and, as it turns out, almost to the dollar what we had predicted.

The 2020 MINI Cooper SE will start at $29,900. That’s before the $7,500 federal tax incentives and before other state incentives that will likely apply. That means for most, the MINI Cooper SE could cost (after tax deductions) just over $20,000. For a car of the quality, design and performance that the MINI Cooper SE will offer, it’s an eye opening price.

MINI Cooper SE

While range has yet to be announced, we expect something close to 120 miles. Perhaps more important than range is how quickly the MINI Cooper SE can charge. The SE can be charged on everything from a normal 120 volt socket to a fast direct-current 50kW charger (the latter allowing an 80 per cent charge to be achieved in just 35 minutes)

The Competition

What about competitors? The Honda E is a particularly interesting one but one that won’t be coming to the US any time soon (and even if it does the MINI beats it on specs). So lets look at a few that are on sale as we speak. The Golf E gets about the same range for $32k. It has two extra doors, a bit more room but doesn’t come as well equipped as the MINI. However because VW reportedly loses money on everyone made, it’s only available it states that mandate some level of electric sales. The Nissan Leaf on the other hand is available everywhere and offers a 150 mile range for $30,885. But it’s questionable design, poor quality and mediocre driving experience have turned us off both times we’ve sampled them.

Then there’s the long-range champion of the segment the Chevy Bolt. The 238 mile range gets top billing as it kills time competition in this category. How can Chevy offer this in a car starting at $36,620? For one it’s a loss leader as GM is rumored to lose $8-9k on each one sold. Then there are the materials and driving experience – both of which leave a lot to be desired.

That leaves us back where we started. The more we look at it, the more the MINI Cooper SE seems to hit a sweet spot for those looking at a commuter electric car. The F56 quality is well known and MINI’s history of great drivers cars could make it totally unique in the category.

No it doesn’t have Tesla like range. But this is a small MINI and it’s natural habitat is urban environments where commutes are short (in miles) and chargers are plentiful.

The new MINI Cooper SE will go on sale early March 2020 at MINI dealers across the U.S.

Official Release: MINI Cooper SE Pricing

MINI USA is pleased to announce the U.S. market pricing on its all-new battery electric MINI Cooper SE. The 2020 MINI Cooper SE will reach US showrooms in early March of 2020 with a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of $29,900 plus an additional $850 Destination & Handling fee.

“U.S. pricing of the new MINI Cooper SE was set to establish this new battery electric as a true class leader in making premium electric mobility more accessible to a broader range of customers.”, said Michael Peyton, Vice President, MINI of the Americas. “We at MINI are pleased to offer more people the ability to experience a drive charged with passion in the form of the MINI Cooper SE, an EV that is built “for the drive”.”

The Cooper SE makes electric mobility more “MINI” by maintaining authentic attributes of design, handling, and fun that are found in every MINI model. The MINI Cooper SE harkens back to the mission of the very first Mini developed by Sir Alec Issigonis in 1959 – to develop a creative solution for a highly efficient car with a small footprint that was fun to drive, and accessible to the masses.

Power and Performance

With a low center of gravity, a powerful electric powertrain, and dynamic handling, the MINI Cooper SE is a true performance car that retains all the fun-to-drive attributes MINI owners have come to know and love. The front wheel drive electric motor generates 181hp and 199 lb.-ft. of torque enabling the new MINI Cooper SE to go from 0 – 60 mph in 6.9 seconds and achieve a top speed of 93 mph.

Attainable Electric Mobility

While the MINI Cooper SE has an MSRP of $29,900, federal tax credits and state electric vehicle tax credits make the MINI Cooper SE even more attractive. In some cases, qualified consumers can get a MINI Cooper SE for as low as $17,900, along with additional incentives such as HOV lane access in some states.

“Premium” Well Defined with High Level of Standard Equipment

The MINI Cooper SE comes standard with a base trim level that offers a full complement of premium features and equipment. Beyond the standard equipment, two additional trim levels will be offered giving customers the choice to easily add two bundled packages of premium equipment.

Electric MINI Cooper SE

Standard equipment:

1. Navigation system with 6.5” display
2. Apple CarPlay Compatibility
3. Heated Front Seats
4. Comfort Access Keyless entry
5. LED Headlights and Fog lights
6. Active Driving Assistant with Forward Collision Warning
7. Acoustic Pedestrian Warning
8. Rear View Camera
9. Bluetooth with phone and audio streaming
10. AutoRainSensingWipersandHeadlights
11. Automatic Climate Control
12. Heated Mirrors and Washer Jets
13. CruiseControl
14. LeatherMultifunctionSteeringWheel
15. Dynamic Digital Instrument Cluster
16. EnergyEfficientHeatPump
17. ACChargingupto7.4kW
18. DCFastChargingupto50kW
19. CarbonBlackLeatheretteUpholstery
20. 16″ Wheels
21. StoragePackage

MINI DNA Carries on in Electric Form

Based on, and dimensionally almost identical to the MINI Hardtop 2 Door launched in 2014, the MINI Cooper SE has been engineered to be electric. Modifications include a height increase of 18 mm (.7 inch) to accommodate floor mounted battery packs and a new, more efficient HVAC heat pump to maximize range during colder weather. Despite these modifications, the MINI Cooper SE has the same distinctive style and identical interior dimensions and cargo space as the internal combustion MINI Hardtop. It also includes a closed, uniquely styled grill for better aerodynamics.

Charging and Regeneration

The MINI Cooper SE comes standard with AC Charging at up to 7.4 kW, which allows for a 100% charge at home in as little as 4 hours, as well as DC Charging at up to 50 kW, which allows for charging at public stations in as little as 35 minutes to achieve an 80% charge, and utilizes the SAE Combo fast charging standard. From the outside you will immediately notice the new EV Specific Filler Flap with LED status indicator for when the vehicle is in charge mode. The MINI Cooper SE also includes a programmable locking feature that can prevent the charge cord from being unplugged when charging and can automatically unlock when fully charged to allow others needing charge access to the charger. The MINI Cooper SE also comes standard with a two-mode regenerative braking system to help maximize the recharging of the battery while also meeting your personal driving style preference.

Inside the Cockpit

The MINI Cooper SE come standard with a new Dynamic Digital Instrument Cluster which features a digital speedometer and graphic indications for Charge Level and Power Level, as well as scrollable data including remaining range and charging/charge level during charging. This puts essential EV operations and energy consumption data all in one convenient place.