You Can Now Turn Your Classic Mini Into An EV
Would you have an electric powertrain transplanted into your classic Mini?by Isaac Atienza, on LISTEN 02:25
"Restomods" are currently a trend that’s in full swing. Such recent examples are the 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle with a 900-hp big block V8 and now we have Mini themselves entering the business with its Recharge program.
While the marketing term sounds exactly like Volvo’s Recharge line of electrified vehicles, this one aims to turn your classic Mark 1 Mini into an electric vehicle for the future.
Say goodbye to its original 34 horsepower, 848 cc internal combustion engine (ICE) in favor of an electric motor that produces 90 kW (121 horsepower), which is nearly quadruple of what the original produced. As a result, the electric Mark 1 Mini now sprints from 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 9 seconds, which is way faster than what the ICE-powered original could do.
Mini did not say how big the battery is, except for the fact that it can be charged at up to 6.6 kW and an estimated range of 100 miles. Now, that isn’t very far, and it’s about as much as a Mazda MX-30. The main point, however, is that you can enter through low emissions zones in various cities without restriction.
Mini says that the restomod is reversible because the team will keep your original engine along with its key components. Of course, in its transition into an EV, the gauges have to be revised, and the fuel filler needs to be converted into a charging port.
Mini’s recharge project was due to the positive response to a classic Mini EV that was shown at the 2018 New York Auto Show and way before they released the fully-electric Mini Cooper SE. Since then, a dedicated team from Mini’s Oxford plant devised a plan to convert the classic Mini into an EV in a much bigger scale.
The conversions will be made in the UK, and you can expect future collaborations from the brand with various artists. Sebastian Beuchel, Head of MINI Global Brand Management says:
"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."