Thursday, November 14, 2019

At this week’s Frankfurt Motor Show, automakers will be vying to show that Tesla won’t overtake them by introducing a passel of battery-electric vehicles themselves. Here’s a look from Smarticd of one of those new electrified cars that you could be driving by the end of this decade.

Electric Mini to Hit Market in 2019

For the most part, modern electric vehicles (EVs) fit into two categories: small econobox commuters and $100,000+ super cars.

A promise of an affordable performance EV

Unfortunately, for those of us who don’t enjoy blending in our our morning commute, or didn’t find 100 grand under our pillow after losing a tooth, we have yet to see a small, affordable, but sporty EV.

Ahead of the biennial Frankfurt Motor Show, Mini unveiled its new EV concept. It will be officially showcased during the show. While this is not Mini’s first EV (that was the Mini-E, a limited edition produced in 2009) it is designed to complement the new Countryman plug-in hybrid.

Design First

As no powertrain specs have yet been released, the Mini EV tease is really a design showcase more than anything else; that being said, the design is something worth showing off.

A full electric Mini returns

As if the engineers in Germany have finally turned aesthetic appeal into a science, Mini describes its new EV design as, “Cutting-edge, pure and dynamic (in an efficient way).” What we really like about its design are the new LED headlights (which look much less “buggy” than the current Mini Cooper headlights), the funky asymmetrical wheels, and the LED taillights, which are each designed to be half a Union Jack.

Just like every other anticipated EV, if the Mini is going to be competitive it will have to offer an all-electric range of at least 200 miles (if not more), and maintain the classic “bulldog” sportiness that has carried the brand for so many years.

The latter could be much harder than it sounds, but according to Senior Vice President of BMW Group Design, Adrian van Hooydonk, “The Mini Electric Concept is a quintessential Mini–compact, agile, simply the ideal companion for everyday driving. At the same time, it conveys a whole new take on the concept of sportiness.” Given that the Mini EV’s powertrain will be built in the same line as the BMW i3, it can be expected to produce similar spunky performance.

As with powertrain numbers, we have yet to be given an official price for the Mini EV. Its pricing will likely not be dictated by competitor pricing, as the Mini EV will not have any direct competitors; that being said, look for pricing to be somewhere around the magical $35,000 mark with lease deals below the BMW i3’s $289/month ones.

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Nick Zatopa is a contributor at Smarticd. Nick is heavily into the modified car scene, but has become increasingly interested in performance electric and hybrid vehicles. A graduate of the University of San Francisco with a degree in Media Studies, he has also worked in the automotive industry.

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