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BMW Group will present the new, electrically-powered MINI E to the global media for the first time at the Los Angeles Auto Show on 19/20 November 2008. 500 MINI E vehicles will then be shipped to the US states of California, New York and New Jersey for testing with private and corporate customers.
The development of the MINI E underlines BMW Group’s commitment to reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions in road traffic, without compromise to the driving experience. The 500 cars bound for North America will offer BMW Group the opportunity to evaluate ownership potential for vehicles supplied with an electric power supply. BMW Group aims to begin series production in the medium term of all-electric vehicles as part of the company’s Number ONE strategy.
The cars will be delivered to customers on a one-year lease with an extension option. Monthly lease installments will cover any required technical service including all necessary maintenance and the replacement of wearing parts. At the end of the lease, all of the automobiles belonging to the project will be returned to the BMW Group’s engineering fleet where they will be subjected to comparative tests.
MINI E specification and performance
The MINI E’s electric drive train produces a peak torque of 220 Nm, and power is delivered to the front wheels via a single-stage helical gearbox. This unique engine and transmission arrangement powers the MINI E seamlessly to 62 mph in 8.5 seconds and on to an electronically-limited top speed of 95 mph.
Based on the current MINI Hatch, the car will initially be available as a two-seater. The space normally inhabited by rear passengers is reserved for a lithium-ion battery.
When in use in the zero-emissions MINI, the battery unit combines high output with ample storage capacity and remarkable power output. The lithium-ion storage unit will have a maximum capacity of 35 kilowatt hours (kWh) and transmit energy to the electric motor as direct current at a nominal 380 volts. The rechargeable battery is made up of 5,088 cells grouped into 48 modules. These modules are packaged into three battery elements that are compactly arranged inside the MINI E.
The energy storage unit’s basic components are based on technologies proven in power supply units for mobile phones and portable computers. The MINI E’s lithium-ion battery can be plugged into all standard power outlets. Its charge time is strongly dependent on the voltage and amperage of the electricity flowing through the grid. In the USA, users can recharge a battery that has been completely drained within a very short period of time using a wallbox that will be supplied as standard with every MINI E.
The wallbox will be installed in the customer’s garage, enable higher amperage, and thus provide for extremely short charging times. Wallboxes fully recharge batteries in just two-and-a-half hours. Only lockable garages or similar buildings will qualify as power stations for the MINI E.
Driven by electricity: zero emissions at minimal cost
A full recharge draws a maximum of 28 …