MINI reveals 5th generation 3-door
In its fifth generation, the MINI 3-door once again embodies the core of the brand yet now with a fully electric drivetrain. The silhouette features hallmark MINI proportions: short overhangs, a short bonnet, and a contrasting long wheelbase, while larger wheels and the removal of chrome from the vehicle bring a fresh take to the design.
The front end of the all-electric MINI Cooper remains iconic thanks to a striking new octagonal grille with filigree contour, and the infamous MINI circular headlights, which are offered with three unique light signatures for the first time. While horizontal light graphics are offered as standard, optionally the daytime running light elements can be switched to create three adjustable light signatures. In addition, all light modes start and end with a specially orchestrated welcome and goodbye animation.
Flush door handles are offered for the time first, while the wheel arches and side scuttles have been removed. Typical MINI design features such as the visual three-part division of the vehicle body, the all-round window area and contrasting roof help the new design stand out.
The new MINI aesthetic also gives the rear a new, contemporary feel, featuring clear surfaces and flush rear lights which can be switched to different modes in the same way as the front headlights. A defined shoulder section and a black handle completes the exterior design.
Three individual trims for more character
The all-electric MINI Cooper is available in three different trims; Classic, Exclusive and Sport. The Classic trim presents a reduced overall appearance while highlighting key parts such as the logo in new colour Vibrant Silver. A range of four external paint finishes, including all-new Sunny Side Yellow, one contrasting roof colour and two wheel options give customers maximum flexibility.
The Exclusive trim adds additional exterior design elements, such as the option for a Multitone Roof with a combination of three different colours, as well as offering the front grille in Vibrant Silver. Finally, the Sport trim offers a distinctive front and rear design, using high-gloss black as the frame for the front grille and logo colour. Combined with contrasting Chili Red roof and red/black bonnet stripes available optionally, there is no doubt the Sport trim has been inspired by its motorsport history.
The interior of the vehicle echoes the famous minimalist design of the classic Mini, using just the round instrument cluster in the centre and the infamous toggle bar below. In the new MINI Cooper, it is precisely these two elements, in combination with the steering wheel, that are the focus of the interior cabin.
The curved dashboard features a textile surface for the first time, where a specially developed knitting process has been used to create a versatile, easy-care textile in a two-colour design that is made of recycled polyester. To keep the dashboard as slim as possible the air vents are flat, and behind the steering wheel, the optional Head-up Display ensures that all the relevant content appears in the driver's field of vision.
The clear lines and space in the front seats give the interior a modern feel, while the optional panoramic glass roof makes the interior bright and friendly. In the dark, the side lighting is based on the ambient light, thereby contributing to a distinctive interior atmosphere, and the armrest, mounted on the driver's seat, provides even more space in the centre console.
Underneath the dashboard, the newly designed toggle bar houses the most important driving functions: parking brake, gear selector, start/stop key, experience mode toggle and volume control. Without the need for a gearstick, the new MINI Cooper offers more storage space in the centre console, with larger cup holders and an open storage compartment, alongside a wireless charging area. For those choosing the Exclusive trim, a knitted surface and a textile strap comes as standard.
The rear of the vehicle offers additional underfloor storage in the luggage compartment, and by folding down the rear seats in a 60:40 ratio, the luggage compartment can be expanded from 200 to 800 litres.
The central OLED display has a diameter of 240mm and MINI Operating System 9, all vehicle functions can be operated with either touch or voice control, while the display has been moved closer to the drive for easy reach.
The upper half of the screen displays vehicle-related information such as speed and battery status, and can be tapped to be displayed full screen, while the lower area houses Navigation, Media, Phone and Climate. In the Home menu, other widgets are displayed in thumbnail view to the left and right of the current menu function and can be brought up and selected by swiping horizontally to the centre. All other functions can be accessed via the menu with the display returning to the default setting via the home button.
At the centre of the screen is the start menu, where personalised content can be selected and launched by swiping to the side. In the lower section of the screen is the fixed status bar containing the menu items "Navigation", "Media", "Telephone", "All Apps" and, depending on the situation, "Home", which can be selected directly.
Swiping up from the lower edge of the screen reveals a tool belt where favourite functions can be stored and called up rapidly. The tool belt can also be activated via the star button on the multifunction steering wheel. The upper screen area is reserved for driving-relevant content such as the vehicle speed and important information on vehicle status. The optional Head-up Display shows the most important information for the driver in their field of view.
The temperature for the driver and front passenger is permanently displayed on the left- and right-hand edge of the screen. The climate control settings are integrated into the MINI Interaction Unit and can be adjusted on the top layer by touch or voice command. Depending on the Experience mode selected, a single tap on the speed display transforms the entire unit into a MINI-typical speedometer.
MINI connects: the new MINI Operating System 9
MINI Operating System 9 is an in-house development by the BMW Group and is based on an Android Open Source Project (AOSP) software stack. The interface uses all-new static and dynamic graphical elements which blend naturally into the circular form of the OLED display.
The new MINI Navigation provides maps and directions in realistic 3D visualisations, displaying complicated turning situations, current traffic levels and assistance with parking with information on parking options, digital payment methods and more. A charge-optimised route can be calculated for the all-electric MINI Cooper immediately after entering the destination, while an optional augmented reality function is available for the visualisation of turn-by-turn directions.
In addition, MINI Connected upgrades give customers the opportunity to purchase additional vehicle functions. In conjunction with the optionally available MINI Connected Package, the MINI Connected Store provides access to a constantly evolving variety of apps, including gaming, music, and video streaming. The new AirConsole app provides a unique form of in-car gaming for all passengers, making the smartphone the controller of the game on the OLED display.
MINI Experience Modes
Seven MINI Experience modes are available on the new MINI Cooper Electric: Core, Green, Go-Kart, Personal, Vibrant, Timeless and Balance. Each mode has specially designed backgrounds and when one of the seven modes is selected, the display focuses on a relevant "Mode App". Giving drivers the opportunity to personalise the inside cabin, the MINI projector housed on the back of the OLED display immerses the dashboard in matching colour schemes and patterns, while the combined ambient lighting provides a unique cabin experience.
In Go-Kart Mode, there is a focus on MINI's racing DNA; the display and interior as a whole feature the colours anthracite and red, while specific analogue displays for driving dynamics complement this mode inspired by John Cooper Works. Vivid Mode draws on the colours of the album cover for the ambient lighting and for a unique experience, Personal Mode allows an individually selected image to be set as the display background via the MINI App. The dominant colours of the image then extend across the textile dashboard surfaces by means of a digital colour picker. The ambient lighting under the dashboard and in the door mirror is also colour-coded to match these projections.
Three newly designed trims
In line with focusing on reduction, the interior offers new contemporary colours, materials, and design features, for example a brand-new three-spoke steering wheel with textile strap in the six o'clock spoke. Newly developed, high-quality, and environment-friendly materials are also used across the dashboard and door panels, where knitted surfaces are made of recycled polyester and feature a two-tone design.
Three newly designed trims of Classic, Exclusive and Sport allow customers the ultimate choice in interior personalisation. In Classic trim, MINI uses a modern 2D knitted textile in the interior of a production vehicle for the first time. Black sports seats in a high-quality synthetic leather are offered with a distinctly patterned multitone textile to match a coloured textile band on the dashboard, while on the dashboard and door handles, a two-tone black knitted material is offered. Also available within this trim is a grey and black material featuring perforated houndstooth pattern, while the side contrasts in blue textile.
The Exclusive trim features a two-tone houndstooth pattern on the knitted-textile instrument panel and is available in two colours with traditional accent stitching and perforated Vescin sports seats. Customers choosing the Exclusive trim can also take the all-new Spray-Tech roof which features a blending of three different colours.
The Sport trim offers a performance focused interpretation of the new materials, combining multi-coloured knitted textile and black synthetic leather with red stitching. A distinct front and rear design with the vehicle grille and logo in high-gloss black is offered as standard, while a contrasting Chili Red roof and JCW-specific red or black bonnet stripes can be added optionally.
With a completely new powertrain, the new MINI Cooper Electric is available in two variants: E and SE. The Cooper E hosts a high-voltage battery with 40.7 kWh of capacity which provides up to 190 miles of electric range according to the WLTP test cycle. A 135 kW/184 hp electric motor generates a torque of 290 Nm and accelerates the vehicle from 0 to 62mph in 7.3 seconds.
With an output of 160 kW/218 hp, the Cooper SE sprints from 0 to 62mph in 6.7 seconds with a maximum torque of 330 Nm, with the calculated range increasing to a maximum of 250 miles thanks to a battery capacity of 54.2 kWh.
The MINI Cooper Electric has an increased track width and wheelbase, with a tuned suspension and damping system. Combined with powerful brakes, low centre of gravity, a strut brace and highly preloaded stabiliser mounts on the axles, the MINI Cooper promises precise steering and comfort.
The various MINI Experience modes offer further individual settings, for example, on Go-Kart Mode, customers can configure steering response and intervention limits of traction control to ensure more driving fun. By contrast, Green Mode optimises the efficiency of the drivetrain, focusing on ensuring maximum range thanks to increased recuperation management.
The MINI Cooper can be charged via three ways; 11 kW AC charging, 75 kW DC charging and 95 kW DC charging, meaning at a fast-charging station, the battery can be charged from 10 to 80 per cent in under 30 minutes. By using the MINI Navigation, the vehicle will ensure the high-voltage battery reaches the ideal temperature for efficient charging in advance, thus reducing charging time. Customers can also optimise charging for their schedule, setting charging start times, active charging windows, and target battery capacity by departure time. Finally, drivers can instruct that the interior cabin is air conditioned by a set departure time.
The MINI App provides a convenient overview of the vehicle status and charging process, including current battery status, charging-optimised route plan and charging history.