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MINI E - Click above for high-res image gallery

One of the most desired electric vehicles available (somewhat) today is the MINI E. Short test drives can't duplicate what it's like to live with such a car, but there are a multiple blogs being written about the daily MINI E experience. Lyle Dennis from All Cars Electric has just written about his first 1,000 miles with the MINI E. We aren't giving away any secrets by saying that he loved them. Dennis has driven the car on highways, in the city and on suburban roads, under pouring rain and in intense heat. So far, so good, he writes. The only problem is that the car requires a 240V charging cord, which Dennis doesn't have available. Thus, he's found that the car charges only 3.5 percent per hour using 110V and, although the car is supposed to have a 100-mile range at full charge, he's only gotten around 70 highway miles - with A/C - from a full charge. Where does Dennis charge his EV? Wherever he finds an available electric outlet. Read his thoughts here.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 17 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      I would have figured that there would be a reserve in the battery. When you get to 0%, the car slows down to be able to get you an extra few miles, in effect taking range anxiety to a more acceptable level.
      why not the LS2LS7?, I don't think that using lead acid batteries would get you the range nor dependability you're talking about since you would be using more capacity than the lithium batteries. Plus there would be no room for all those batteries in a Mini.
      • 5 Years Ago
      So let's assume you have 28 kWh of energy at 80% dod. That is 400Wh per mile. That is.....A LOT! But if Lyle had 60 miles of range left in the car and he drove 27 miles to work and had 33 miles (He says 35) left, how can you have range anxiety with 6 (8) whole miles left in the pack? And how much energy is 60 miles anyway. If it is 400Wh per mile it's 24kWh or almost full. BMW claims 5.4 miles per kWh or 151 miles range. I would like to hear other drivers experiences and Wh per mile usage. I bet someone can hypermile this Mini and get much more range out of it.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Yanquetino
        "Most intriguing of all is the fact that the MINI E's "normal" range doesn't seem to be affected that much by its air conditioner, stereo, lights, etc."

        That's because even relatively heavy power accessories like the AC and even heat, if properly designed don't draw a significant amount of power compared to pushing a vehicle through the air at 70mph.

        It probably takes 25-30kW of power to push the Mini through the air at 70mph. The AC or heater probably use about 1/10th that amount of power.

        Since the owner admittedly has a mostly highway commute, driving slower will improve his range significantly. It seems like another 20% battery capacity would be beneficial for him, as would the availability of high power chargers.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hoi, Matthijs:

        BMW's claim is an exaggeration, only achievable under very ideal conditions. All of the MINI E blogs that I have been following report an average of 3.1 miles/kWh so far, giving the vehicle a practical range of 100 miles (1 mile per percent of charge).

        That sounds pretty good to me, and in the same ballpark as the RAV4-EV (2.73 miles/kWh) and the Tesla Roadster (3.24 miles/kWh).

        Most intriguing of all is the fact that the MINI E's "normal" range doesn't seem to be affected that much by its air conditioner, stereo, lights, etc.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Like Dave said, the highway driving is probably the reason. It makes a significant difference driving 55-65mph vs 65-75mph. EVs aren't as efficient on the highway vs in the city/lower speeds, which is counter to what we expect in an ICE.

      • 5 Years Ago
      We've just begun a series of videos on converting your own Mini Cooper Clubman to electric drive. We think we're looking at about 130 mile range with the 100 Ah LiFePo4 battery cells and right at about 200 miles on the 180 Ah cellls. http://evtv.me/mini.html

      Jack Rickard
      • 5 Years Ago
      Good news, let's just hope they're serious about making a production version, they would have to create a whole new platform. Turning an existing platform into an EV results in reduction in some existing space due to the size of the battery packs. Gorr - please shut up ;-)
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wonder how Dennis managed to qualify for the lease, without a 240V outlet. Of course, most people have a 240V outlet, for their electric drier or oven.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree. Who doesn't have a 240V outlet? If I go electric I am looking to get a 440V/70amp circuit in my house. Charge that sucker up in a couple hours.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I expected that the stated range is a very optimistic figure on all these cars. A standard needs to be established before they go on sale in any quantities. That might even be a stimulus for sales to public made skeptical by wild claims by manufacturers. An international standard would be probably be too much to hope for.
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is a horrendous car. It's dangeurous, under-performing, costly, un-practical, etc. I said to install a small, lightweight gasoline electric generator inside this car and put the price at 300$ month, no more. If you compare this car to the fcx clarity at 600$/month, then this ridiculous mini worth 100$/month in his actual form. I think bmw is black-pr-ing themself by offering this car to their consumers at 800$/month, LOL. They are showing to the entire world that they cannot commercialize a green car that is better and less costly then an actual outdated polluting and under-performant ice car. Their hydrogen ice car are as stupid as this one with an unnessary liquid hydrogen tank. Stay away from this loss in space car compagny, they have nothing to offer worth mentionning.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I think this "theft of electricity" can become a problem as more EVs hit the road. Whether it's a hospital, a business, or even your own apartment's parking garage - whenever you plug-in, someone else is paying for your "gas". The early adopters will probably benefit from this, but eventually, enough people will get pissed about paying for someone else's electrons.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Let's look at a worst case scenario - You plug in your car all day (8-hours) at work into 110v/15A circuit. Most chargers won't pull much more than about 10 amps to avoid overloading the circuit. Electricity is expensive at 30c kW/h (a reality in some parts of the country).

        8h * 1.1kW * 30c = $2.64. Half the cost of your grande mocha. In most of the country the cost would be about 1/3rd that or 80c. It's also just enough to get the guy back home about 27 miles which is convenient.

        If people leeching a small amount of power becomes a problem, security guards which most businesses already pay for will simply patrol the lots of unauthorized plugs and unplug them. Or they will see an opportunity to look "green" and install additional outlets free of charge. Once usage becomes significant, meters will be installed and EV users can pay with their credit card.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Ah, battery power isn't looking so great now is it? From some of the fanboys here, you'd imagine it was the greatest thing ever.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Sounds pretty good to me. Remember also that the technology is improving by leaps and bounds. As an example, the Tesla Model S will have an option for a 300 mile range. That's better than "pretty good" imo.
      • 5 Years Ago
      70 miles are you kidding me? You can make your own conversions and do about that well (60 miles) with cheap-lead acid batteries.
      • 5 Years Ago
      EV fans should keep an eye on events at Capitol Hill Washington next Tuesday. It doesn't involve the Mini but it sure will raise the public profile of electric vehicles. Six of the biggest names in US commerce will each take delivery of a 7.5ton US-built all-electric truck in their own colors. And a whole bunch of company chiefs will be there to share the green glory and tell us how many each fleet has ordered.

      (PS: Gorr - you'd better look away that day or you might suffer an apoplectic seizure.)
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