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Fully-charged MINI ideal for urban driving

MINI Electric Hatch Hatchback (20 on)
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PROS

  • Same dimensions and bootspace as petrol car
  • Performance close to Cooper S
  • Low centre of gravity for agile handling

CONS

  • Lower range than larger electric cars
  • Is a 124-mile EV range enough?
  • Steering wheel mounted dials have gone

PROS

  • Same dimensions and bootspace as petrol car
  • Performance close to Cooper S
  • Low centre of gravity for agile handling

CONS

  • Lower range than larger electric cars
  • Is a 124-mile EV range enough?
  • Steering wheel mounted dials have gone

The first all-electric MINI will feature a range of up to 144 miles on a single charge and accelerate faster than a petrol-engined Cooper model, while retaining the standard Hatch’s compact dimensions and boot capacity. Coupled with a high standard specification, this rechargeable version is even more suitable for city-driving than ever. 

Larger electric car rivals are plentiful but the production MINI Electric Hatch is one of a new crop of smaller electric cars like the Peugeot 208, Vauxhall Corsa-e and more established rival from parent company BMW, the i3. Visually, it's little changed from the prototype version of the concept car we drove earlier in 2019.

How big’s the Electric MINI's battery pack?

A T-shaped pack of 12 lithium-ion modules is built into the car’s floor, between the front seats and below the rear seats, with a capacity of 32.6 kWh. What does that mean? Well, the 2020 electric MINI is rated for a real-world range of 124-144 miles, and can be fast charged from 0-80% in as little as 35 minutes.

MINI Electric charge port

A full charge from an 11kw wallbox at home will take three and a half hours via its neatly-integrated fuel filler. This socket is located above the right rear wheel, where the petrol filler is on combustion engine models, making it perfect for reverse parkers.

How fast is the MINI Electric?

Using a newly designed BMW electric motor and battery pack, the MINI Electric produces 184hp and 270 Nm. Because it weights only 145kg more than the combustion engined version thanks to its optimised electric powertrain, that translates into a punchy 0-62 mph time of just 7.3 seconds – halfway between a MINI Cooper and Cooper S.

We've driven a prototype of the MINI Electric, which you can read about here.

MINI Hatch Cooper S E front three-quarter

New suspension technology and a lower centre of gravity means this car should handle like a MINI. Improved front-to-rear weight distribution of the production car means it's more balanced as well. The acoustic pedestrian protection noise generator has been given a distinctive tone so it sounds like one too.

As with the standard car you get four driving modes including Sport for more enthusiastic driving, plus Mid, Green and Green+ for maximum efficiency from the battery.

Does it look any different?

Based on the three-door body shell the MINI Electric is distinguished by embossed logos on the side sills, unique wheel design, tailgate and front radiator grille. The latter is closed off as you’d expect from a motor that requires very little cooling.

Inside there’s the debut of MINI’s new digital dashboard based around a 5.5-inch colour screen behind the steering wheel. Here you can see you speed plus the charge level of the battery, the selected driving mode and the status of the driver assistance systems - the typical electric vehicle functions are all covered.

MINI Electric interior

While some electric cars feature a smaller boot than the combustion version, the MINI Electric has the same capacity as the three-door hatch, with 211 litres expanding to 731 litres with the rear seats folded.

What comes as standard?

Plenty – including a 6.5-inch central touchscreen with sat-nav, along with MINI Online, Apple CarPlay, and Real Time Traffic Updates.

Outside you get Vigorous Grey door mirrors (optionally yellow, along with the horizontal blade on the front radiator grille) and the choice of a body-finish roof, plus black or white. Dual-zone automatic air-conditioning is standard, equipped with a heater that uses 75% less energy.

MINI Electric side view

Mid-level cars come with leather-look upholstery, parking sensors, rear view camera, heated seats, Driving Assistance Pack and Logo Projection, while the top of the line car has Park Assist, Harmon-Kardon sound system and a head-up display. You also get a panoramic roof, matrix LED headlights and an 8.8-inch infotainment screen in the most expensive model.  

How much does it cost?

Cars in the standard trim cost £24,400 after the Government’s plug-in car grant, and can be had for £299 a month – based on £4,000 deposit and 48-month Personal Contract Hire (PCH) agreement. That's more expensive than a 2020 MINI Cooper, but in line with its electric hatchback rivals.

Orders are open now - make sure you check back on the Parkers site for a full review of the MINI Electric Hatch.

Find out more about all electric cars here