Only 100 will be built.
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the beloved Mini. It also marks the start of a new era for the humble hatchback, as the first-ever fully electric Mini is slated to debut later this year. If, however, you prefer the styling of the original classic Mini, you can now have the best of both worlds thanks to UK company Swindon Powertrain. Unveiled at the London Classic Car Show, the Swind E Classic Mini is built on the restored body of an original Mini but the combustion engine has been replaced with a 24 kWh battery and an electric motor that produces 108 hp.
Swind claims the E Classic Mini can be driven for up to 124 miles when fully charged, which takes four hours using a female Type 2 connector. Don't expect to be blown away by the performance, however, as 0-62 mph takes 9.2 seconds before the electric Mini hits a modest top speed of 80 mph.
Inevitably, adding an electric motor and battery has made the car heavier, which should be sacrilegious since the Mini is renowned for being light and fun to drive. The gross weight has been increased by 176 pounds bringing the total weight to 1,587 pounds, which is still light by modern standards.
The electric classic Mini also has a few advantages over the original. Weight distribution has improved from 68/32 percent to 57/43 front/rear, and removing the fuel tank has increased the boot capacity to seven cu-ft.
But while the original Mini was cheap and cheerful, the same can't be said about the electric version. Only 100 will be built in either left- or right-hand drive at the company's facility in Wiltshire, England, with prices starting at £79,000 ($101,788). That makes the E Classic Mini more expensive than the Audi e-Tron and the entry-level Tesla Model X.
You also get far less equipment than other EVs on the market. As standard, the E Classic Mini includes USB ports, underfloor heating, heated leather seats, and heated front and rear windscreens, but you'll have to pay extra if you want an infotainment system, satellite navigation, air conditioning, and power steering. The full-length sliding fabric roof, bespoke paint, and fast charging are also optional.