A dedicated team from the MINI plant in Oxford came up with the idea of creating sustainable driving fun in a classic car for everyone who wants to convert their vintage Mini into an electric car. An electric motor for the original combines tradition with pioneering technology – in the spirit of the circular economy.
If Alec Issigonis could design the Classic Mini again today, the iconic small car would certainly have an electric motor, according to a recent statement by MINI parent company BMW. After all, the original presented in 1959 was created during an oil crisis and was based on the idea of saving fuel and transporting four occupants and their luggage in the smallest possible footprint. The principle of creative use of space and the driving pleasure that comes with it still connects MINI with the original ideas of the designer Issigonis to this day. With the MINI Recharged project, there is now the opportunity to relive the history of the Classic Mini in the 21st century. century in a particularly sustainable way.
The conversion of the brand’s classic vehicles to an electric drive combines traditional values with future-oriented technology. The idea for this came up even before the British manufacturer offered a fully electric car with the MINI Cooper SE. A unique Classic Mini Electric was built in 2018 and presented at the New York Auto Show. The reaction at the time was so positive that a dedicated team from the MINI plant in Oxford came up with a plan to make a corresponding offer available to customers who own a Classic Mini.
90 kW and 160 km range
In order to bring traditional driving fun to life with a locally emission-free drive, the original petrol engine of the Classic Mini has been replaced by a modern electric drive. No irrevocable changes are made to the substance of the vehicle during the conversion as part of MINI Recharged. The careful handling of the historical heritage is an important part of the concept. This means that it is even possible to restore the Classic Mini to its original condition at a later date. For this purpose, the original engine of each vehicle is marked and stored in the course of the conversion. So it can be reused in the event of a possible retrofit of the Classic Mini.
“What the project team in Great Britain developed preserves the character of the Classic Mini and enables all-electric driving fun for its fans. With MINI Recharged we connect the past with the future of the brand.“ – Bernd KOrber, head of the BMW brand MINI
With MINI Recharged, the lifecycle of a vehicle can be sustainably extended. Because even in the event of an engine failure, a Classic Mini can now be saved from the end and sent on a journey through time that takes its owner both into the past and into the future.
An electric motor is available to drive this, which generates a continuous output of up to 90 kW and accelerates the electrified Classic Mini from zero to 100 km/h in around 9 seconds. The energy for this is supplied by a high-voltage battery that can be charged with an output of up to 6.6 kW and enables a predicted range of around 160 kilometers. In addition, every electrified Classic Mini as part of MINI Recharged will receive the characteristic central instrument known from the early days of the classic, which now also displays the drive temperature, the gear selected and the remaining range in addition to the speed.
Classic Mini fans who want to have locally emission-free driving fun with MINI Recharged do not need to re-register their vehicle after the conversion. The driving experience changes for them. MINI Recharged fits seamlessly into the brand’s future strategy, which also includes the aspect of the circular economy. Because no new vehicle is being produced for this project, but the driving fun of tomorrow is being created from traditional stock. In this way, a second, particularly sustainable vehicle life can begin for many a Classic Mini. While almost every fifth new MINI now has an electrified drive, love for the brand’s classic vehicles is also becoming a locally emission-free experience that combines the past and the future.
The Classic Mini is upcycled entirely in the UK. Each converted vehicle is individually numbered, making it unique.
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