Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test: having fun with electricity

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What can the electric mini do??

Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test: having fun with electricity-2020

Small but nice: the modern mini models assert themselves according to this principle Successful on the market for almost 20 years. Soon you can add the adjective "clean", because at the beginning of March 2020 the electric Mini Cooper SE will hit dealers.

We have already driven it.

What is that?

Definitely a mini. In contrast to the Honda e For example, the Bavarian British have refrained from completely turning the design inside out. That makes sense, because customers seem to love the nostalgic look. According to Mini, there are already tens of thousands of pre-orders for the Cooper SE, the official name of the electric model. Yellow accents set it apart from its brothers, but a more subtle color scheme can also be selected.

The small Stromer is only available as a 3.84 meter short three-door model. I notice the consequences soon after getting started. There is a cozy atmosphere in the interior, the Mini Cooper SE is tailored to the waist. Access to the rear is a bit tricky, but children should prefer to sit here anyway. But the trunk does not suffer from the power conversion: 211 to 731 liters are the level of the normal three-door. The only difference: the electric mini is 18 millimeters higher than its conventional colleagues.

Speaking of body shape: We have one more suggestion. Why not an electric mini convertible? Strolling around openly without direct exhaust fumes – that would be it.

I look around the cockpit and look at a large digital display. It is easy to read, which is only partially true for the rather small but standard navigation system. A head-up display helps with the top equipment. Mini owners know the rest: Nostalgic toggle switches including a start button. Ergonomically debatable, but nice to look at. There is nothing wrong with the materials used and their workmanship.

What's under the sheet metal?

Let's turn to the technology: Most of it comes from the BMW i3, However, due to the shorter dimensions of the Mini Cooper SE, it is not structurally identical. (About 16 centimeters separate the two vehicles.) The relationship with the i3 goes back to 2009, by the way. At that time, the first Mini E was running as a technology carrier for the i3 in the field test. Its battery stole the rear seats and trunk, which illustrates the battery development over the past ten years.

The battery gives me the keyword: It is housed in a T-shape under the vehicle floor and stores 32.6 kilowatt hours of energy. For comparison: the Honda e offers 35.5 kWh, 41 kWh the smallest Renault Zoe, 32.3 kWh the VW e-Up and its offshoots and the BMW i3 42.2 kWh.

The electric motor delivers a hefty 135 kW (184 hp), this output is the same as that of the BMW i3s, as is the 270 Newton meters of maximum torque. The Mini Cooper SE weighs 1,365 kilograms, an increase of 145 kilograms compared to a comparable Mini Cooper S three-door with Steptronic.

And the range? Mini indicates between 235 and 270 kilometers. Not exactly the world, but the Cooper SE is a) pretty small and b) it is a second car for the city.

Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test: having fun with electricity-cooper

How does he drive?

Right there, in the city, he plays his trump card. The electric mini hums from zero to 60 km / h in just 3.9 seconds. In case of doubt, this leaves you with a lot of sports cars. The Cooper SE takes 7.3 seconds to run 100, with a maximum of 150 items. But long motorway trips should be reconsidered, as the range is noticeably reduced there.

The standard charging cable is available for connection to a household socket. A wallbox for charging at home and a three-phase charging cable for using public charging stations are optionally available. Both options make it possible to charge the high-voltage battery of the new Mini Cooper SE with a maximum output of 11 kW to 80 percent within two and a half hours and to 100 percent within three and a half hours. The energy reserves can be refreshed even faster at a direct current quick charging station. The charger is designed for a maximum charging power of 50 kW, so that the 80 percent charge can be completed in just 35 minutes.

Overall, the little Stromer maintains the sporty note: good suit, direct steering, but quite stiff suspension. I choose "Mid", the normal position, from the four driving modes. To do this, I set the recuperation to the highest level. In this case, the braking effect starts immediately if I even lift my foot off the accelerator pedal. Novices have to get used to it, but you will quickly find pleasure in "one-pedal driving". By the way: The Mini Cooper SE is the BMW Group's first electric car with adjustable recuperation.

What does it cost?

A mini was and is not a bargain. Cooper SE does not change anything about that. It starts in Germany at 32,500 euros, but it is already quite well equipped, for example with LED headlights. According to Mini, the car is even 1,200 euros cheaper than a comparable Cooper S with Steptronic.

Admittedly, the rational pragmatist in me thinks that there is also a VW e-Up with four doors for almost 10,000 euros less. But an electric car is not necessarily rational, and a mini is certainly not. So I'm looking towards the BMW i3 (at least 39,000 euros) and Honda e (less range than the Mini, from 33,850 euros). One can only hope that the increase in the state environmental bonus to 6,000 euros will come as quickly as the Mini Cooper SE.

This is what the competition offers:

Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test: having fun with electricity-test Electric cars 2020/2021: an overview of all models

Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test: having fun with electricity-2020 Small electric cars from Mini, Peugeot, Opel and Renault in comparison

Conclusion: 7/10

Nobody needs it, everyone wants it: This old slogan for the Porsche 911 describes the nature of the electric Mini Cooper SE very well. The numerous fans will not be bothered by the mediocre range and the juicy prices. This car is an affair of the heart.

Photo gallery: Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test

Mini Cooper SE (2020) in the test: having fun with electricity-having

Mini Cooper SE 3-door

engine Electric motor, 135 kW (184 PS) output

battery Lithium-ion, 32.6 kilowatt hours gross energy content (28.9 kWh net)

consumption Power consumption: 16.8 – 14.8 kWh / 100 km

Electric range 242 – 270 km (according to NEDC)

Charging port Household socket; 11 kW; 50 kW

Charging time 3.5 hours (11 kW, to 100 percent); 35 minutes (50 kW, to 80 percent)

Trunk volume 211 – 731 liters

Acceleration 0-100 km / h 7.3 sec.

Top speed 150 km / h

Empty weight 1,365 kg (DIN)

Base price from 32,500 euros

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