BMW Unveils Mini Cooper SE, The First Real Electric Mini

2020 MINI Electric | Driving, Interior, Exterior (MINI Cooper SE)
The electric Mini Cooper SE is BMW’s first all-electric car since the BMW i3 was released in 2013. (Photo: YouTube/The Wheel Network)

After a long teaser campaign, Mini's first-ever fully electric car has finally debuted in its official reveal at the company's plant in Oxford, UK. It made just in time for Mini's 60th anniversary.

The company officially calls it the Mini Cooper SE, or if you're in the UK, it might be marketed to you as the Mini Electric. This adorable thing promises to be just as seminal as the original Mini when it was first introduced in the '50s.

As you might imagine, the cabin is just as tech-laden as the powerplant. The usual instrument cluster is now replaced by a 5.5-inch screen that shows your battery level and other EV-specific vitals.

The all-electric Mini Cooper was once just a demo car and a dream for a lot of EV fans, but now it's actually a car that people will be able to buy, with truly competitive range and a ground-up purely electric drivetrain. It has a range of 146 to 168 miles and a fast-charging possible at up to 50 kW.

The Cooper SE is also capable of zero to 60 acceleration in just over seven seconds. Under the hood, the engine is capable of delivering the equivalent of up to 181 HP. It gives you that instant acceleration, which is one reason why people love all-electric cars, and a really quick jump off the line to 37 mph in just 3.9 seconds.

Sure, these number aren't exactly at par with the Tesla Model S (or even the Model 3, for that matter) and the range doesn't match up either. But the classic three-door Mini Cooper design is a draw in itself, and the pricing on the vehicle is around $36,400 U.S. when converted from the €32,500 starting cost. It's a fairly decent choice for buyers who want something luxury-scale but with a price that's not way over their budget.

Meanwhile, this is also the first electric car in the BMW Group family that offers the driver a choice between full regenerative breaking or light, meaning you can tweak how aggressively the vehicle decelerates when you take your foot off the gas. It's another nice option for people switching from gas cars, or who just like to be able to tune performance as much as possible.

According to BMW, shipping for Cooper SE should begin soon, with a March 2020 delivery date. Already, it has quite the list of pre-registered customers.  

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