The classic Minis have become objects of excessive tuning jobs in recent years. We’ve seen several pretty impressive builds, including a Mini with a 500-bhp Acura V6 engine. If you are looking for something more eco-friendly but still wrapped in the same original package, however, BMW Group might have the right answer for you. Folks, enter Mini Recharged.
The British automaker is inviting owners of classic Minis to convert their cars into emission-free machines with modern electric powertrains. There’s no pricing available yet, but Mini says only reversible changes are made to the vehicle and the combustion engines are marked and stored so they can be used again if the owner wants to switch back to the original combustion powertrain in the future.
Gallery: Mini Recharged: electrical conversion
Most importantly, however, Mini promises the go-kart feeling behind the wheel won’t be ruined. We suppose the performance will be improved significantly compared to an original classic Mini, as the Mini Recharged comes with a 120-bhp (90-kilowatt) electric motor. It can propel the small hatch from a standstill to 62 miles per hour (100 kilometres per hour) in approximately nine seconds, three to four seconds quicker than a stock Mini.
There are no details regarding the battery capacity, though Mini says the predicted range at a full charge will be around 100 miles (160 kilometres). Recharging output is up to 6.6 kW. The manufacturer is proud that the original centre instrument cluster on the dashboard is kept in its original form, but now displays information about the drive temperature, the selected gear, range, and speed. As one of the vehicle’s main advantages, Mini says the reborn classic model can be driven in the central areas of cities where combustion cars are prohibited.
A dedicated team from Mini Plant Oxford will be responsible for the development and retrofit of the electric powertrain to the classic Minis.