BMW:Recharged and electrifying: the classic Mini launches into the future.
Munich. If Alec Issigonis could design the classic
Mini again today, the iconic small car would have an electric motor.
After all, the original launched in 1959 was created during an oil
crisis and based on the idea of saving fuel and transporting four
occupants and their luggage in the smallest possible footprint. To
this day, MINI remains linked to the principles of designer Issigonis
with its creative use of space and driving fun. 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 conversion of classic Minis to an electric drive combines
traditional values with future-oriented technology. The idea was born
even before the British premium manufacturer had a fully electric car
on offer with the MINI Cooper SE (electricity consumption
combined:17.6 – 15.2 kWh/100 km according to WLTP; CO2 emissions
combined: 0 g/km.). As a one-off, a classic Mini Electric was built in
2018 and presented at the New York Auto Show. The reactions were so
positive that a dedicated team from MINI Plant Oxford set to work and
developed the plan to make a corresponding offer available to
customers who own a classic Mini.
To experience traditional go-kart handling with an emission-free
drivetrain, the original petrol engine of the classic Mini is replaced
by a modern electric drive. Only reversible changes are made to the
substance of the vehicle during the conversion as part of MINI
Recharged. Careful handling of the historical heritage is an important
part of the concept. This makes it possible to restore the classic
Mini to its original condition at a later date. During the conversion,
the original engine of each vehicle is marked and stored so it can be
reused in the event of a future retrofit of the classic Mini.
“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,” says Bernd Körber, Head of the MINI Brand.
The MINI Recharged project means a vehicle’s life can be extended in
a sustainable way. A classic Mini can now be given a new lease of
life, accompanying its owner into the future, whilst maintaining its
much-loved heritage. The drive is a modern electric motor that
generates a continuous output of up to 90 kW and accelerates the
electrified classic Mini from zero to 100 km/h in approximately nine
seconds. The energy is supplied by a high-voltage battery, which 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 from MINI Recharged receives the characteristic central
instrument cluster, familiar since the early days of the classic,
which now displays the drive temperature, the selected gear, range and speed.
MINI Recharged fans gain a whole new driving experience; a silent
drivetrain with instant acceleration and the ability to enter the
electric or low-emission driving zones of many large cities, otherwise
inaccessible with a combustion engine. For example, the electric
classic Mini can drive in Oxford Street or Piccadilly Circus in
London, and once again be part of the cityscape, without the driver
having to pay an environmental tax (congestion charge) beforehand. In
addition, the electric classic conversion does not need a new registration.
MINI Recharged fits seamlessly into the brand’s future strategy,
which also includes the aspect of circular economy. For this project,
no new vehicles are being produced, instead they are being created
from much-loved, existing cars. It allows a classic Mini to begin a
second, more sustainable life. Today, one in five new MINI models has
an electrified drive and now the MINI Recharged project will allow the
love of the brand’s classic vehicles to become an experience combining
the past and the future.
The bespoke upcycling of the classic Mini is carried out exclusively
in the United Kingdom. Each converted vehicle is given an individual
number, making it unique. “Individuality also plays an important
role with MINI Recharged,” says Sebastian Beuchel, Head of MINI
Global Brand Management. “Unique classic Mini models have always
been created, including true works of art on wheels. That’s why future
collaborations are also planned as part of the MINI Recharged
programme, allowing well-known artists to express their creativity
with specially designed classic Mini models.”
In case of queries, please contact:
Julian Kisch, Press Spokesperson Product Communications MINI
Andreas Lampka, Head of Communications MINI
Jennifer Treiber-Ruckenbrod, Head of Communications MINI and BMW Motorrad
The BMW Group
With its four brands BMW, MINI, Rolls-Royce and BMW Motorrad, the
BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles
and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility
services. The BMW Group production network comprises 31 production
and assembly facilities in 15 countries; the company has a global
sales network in more than 140 countries.
In 2021, the BMW Group sold over 2.5 million passenger vehicles
and more than 194,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax
in the financial year 2020 was € 5.222 billion on revenues amounting
to € 98.990 billion. As of 31 December 2020, the BMW Group had a
workforce of 120,726 employees.
The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term
thinking and responsible action. The company set the course for the
future at an early stage and consistently makes sustainability and
efficient resource management central to its strategic direction,
from the supply chain through production to the end of the use phase
of all products.