• Jul 3rd 2009 at 6:36PM
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The popularity of BMW's MINI E test program in the United States has evidently prompted the company to expand production beyond the original 500 cars and add a smaller test fleet in Europe. The original plan, as announced last fall, was for 500 of the battery-powered MINIs to be made available in the U.S. and split between Southern California and the New York/New Jersey area. According to MINI USA spokeswoman Nathalie Bauters, there will be 450 of the cars in the U.S. with an additional 105 cars in Europe. Of the European fleet, 50 will go to the German capitol of Berlin, 40 to the British capitol in London and the last 15 will be used in and around Münich, hometown to BMW. That makes a total of 555 electric MINIs in a year-long (and controversial) field test. In all likelihood we will be hearing something about the next phase of BMW's electrification plans within the next 12 months, possibly at the LA Auto Show this fall where we first saw the MINI E last year.

[Source: BMW, Bigblogg.Motoring]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      Yup. None of the automakers seem to have any problem getting complicated direct-injection engines and dual-clutch transmissions out on the show room floors, but a simple electric motor and a few batteries? Oh MY!
      • 6 Years Ago
      Sounds like good news.

      Let's all hope those "next phase" plans include some good news.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Reading the above comments makes BMW seem sad and pathetic.

      I have always felt though, that if they really do produce this Mini E, it will sell like hot cakes. Not only is the Mini very popular, and for good reason, but this car will be even better. My only qualifier is the loss of the back seat (what there was of it). Still, it would be my first choice of electric car. I'm determined to keep my '02 ICE car running until an electric is available and affordable. I wish it could be the Mini E, but who knows.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Munich or München: pick one, but don't mix and match ;P
        • 6 Years Ago
        What? I just heard they'll send some Mini Es to Kölogne!
      • 6 Years Ago
      perhaps the big delay is due to the fact that established auto manufacturers are stumped with respect to planning in obsolescence
      • 6 Years Ago
      Quit dragging your feet BMW and mass produce an affordable EV!
      • 6 Years Ago
      It's pretty obvious the auto industry dosen't want to do EV's, with all the monumental amount of feet dragging they all do.

      They are just sitting there, thinking on the most profitable way to backstab their customers, I can tell.
        • 6 Years Ago
        At least the good guys at AC Propulsion are getting something (cash and exposure) out of this, regardless of where BMW takes it.
        • 6 Years Ago
        Sadly that seems to be the case, it is all about parts and repairs isn't it? even after the Japanese taught them a lesson on quality, they still rather screw the customer, and expect their loyalty in return!
      • 6 Years Ago
      This constitutes at least a small step in the right direction to regain the good opinion of EV advocates.

      If BMW's managers really want to wipe the egg off their faces, I would strongly suggest that they deliver some of those extra MINI Es to the applicants who were approved to lease them, but then were denied their vehicles at the last minute to accommodate municipal "fleets" instead --and at a huge discount.

      That token reconciliation would send a clear message that BMW truly does care about consumers seeking a cleaner, greener means of transportation --and not just CARB's ZEV credits.
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