A specialist team from MINI’s Oxford production facility have dedicated time and effort to the project since its inception in 2018 and are now offering the conversion to private owners.
According to MINI itself: “If Alec Issigonis could design the classic Mini again today, the iconic small car would have an electric motor. The MINI Recharged project is an opportunity to continue telling the story of the classic Mini in the 21st century, in a sustainable way.”
The project is more than just a straight swap; it’s completely reversable and all part of a circular economy where no new cars are produced and no parts are thrown away to facilitate the conversion. Original A-series engines and other components that are removed are catalogued and stored to ensure that should the owner wish, they can be refitted to restore the Mini to its factory specification.
This way of doing things maintains a car’s fundamental heritage but also gives it a new lease of life as well as sustainable, daily driving credentials.
Replacing the A-series engine is a 121bhp motor – significantly more than any factory unit that would be removed – which enables the car to accelerate to 62mph in around nine seconds in one continuous surge thanks to a single-speed gearbox. MINI doesn’t give us the battery size, but with efficiency of around 16kWh per 62 miles and a 100-mile range on the WLTP cycle, we suspect it’s somewhere around 26kWh. It can be charged at 6.6kW.
The team maintains the car’s fundamental characteristics as part of the MINI Recharged conversion not only in terms of handling and ride, but also interior features. For example, the iconic central instrument cluster now displays the drivetrain temperature, selected gear (i.e. D, N or R), range and speed. Naturally, all converted cars can be used in low and zero emissions zones.
Bernd Körber, Head of the MINI Brand said, “What the project team are developing preserves the character of the classic Mini and enables its fans to enjoy all-electric performance. With MINI Recharged, we are connecting the past with the future of the brand.”
Obviously, you’ll be wondering how much all of this cost and unfortunately, MINI hasn’t announced any prices just yet. Instead, it points out that each car is individual and unique, and given an individual number upon completion. All of this points to the MINI Recharged factory conversion being expensive in comparison to other conversions out there – such as that from Swindon Powertrain which can be bought for £10,620 before installation.
If you are interested, however, MINI is already taking commissions.
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