Oct 24, 2008

mini cooper to begin field testing an electric car

Mini-fuelling I'm sure this has been covered to death on the autoblogs, but I learned about it via Mini USA's email list: they're looking for 500 drivers in Southern California, New York and New Jersey to participate in a field trial of the MINI E, "a 100% electric, zero-emission premium vehicle ready for every-day driver use."

  • Lithium-ion batteries
  • Two-seater only; what's normally the backseat in a Mini is now full of batteries
  • Zero to 60 in about 8.5 seconds; top speed electronically limited to about 95mph
  • Range of about 150 miles
  • Full recharge draws 28 kilowatt hours, which equates to 5.4 miles / kwh
  • If you pay $0.15 / kwh, that equates to about about $0.03 per mile, which is about one-third the cost per mile of Mini Cooper.[1]

Of course, next to the Pious there couldn't be a more latte-sippin' blue state car than an electric Mini, and this one's only a pilot program, but I'm hopeful we'll see car makers push more hybrid and electric options...

[1] Spreadsheet here, based on an eyeballed average 30mpg for Coopers on Fuelly buying gas at $3.00 per gallon, which is about where the national average is right now.