The Goodwood Festival of Speed has hosted many special guests over the years. From racing legends to rock gods, and even politicos, the event is as well known for the icons in attendance as well as the cars on display. Now, arguably, one special guest combines the best of both. MINI has announced its first plug-in hybrid model will receive its UK debut at the event this summer with the new all-rounder for town and country delivering the option of purely electric driving with zero tailpipe emissions.
What makes it so special? Well, the very British name is impressive. And it's a staple on the best selling car lists of course. But then the technology doesn't disappoint either. The first plug-in hybrid model in the MINI product range offers sporty agility on the road as well as competency beyond the asphalt thanks to its intelligent all-wheel drive system. The MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 hybrid system is made up of a 3-cylinder petrol engine with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology and a synchronous electric motor. Together they generate a system output of 165 kW/224 hp enabling the car to sprint from standing to 62mph in 6.8 seconds.
In everyday traffic the intelligent drive control of the MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 makes for an intense hybrid driving experience. When setting off, only the electric motor is initially active meaning a virtually noiseless start. As is typical of electric motors, the entire torque is available from standing. Once a driving speed of 50mph is reached, the combustion engine is gently activated. The eDRIVE toggle switch enables the driver to continue to drive with only the electric engine beyond this point if preferred: in MAX eDRIVE mode the MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 runs at up to 78mph free of local emissions. The electric range of the first MINI plug-in hybrid model is 25 miles.
The energy required for this is stored in a high-voltage lithium-ion battery. It can be charged at a conventional household socket or, for increased power input and reduced waiting times, at a wallbox or public charging station. Charging takes between 2:15 and 3:15 hours.
The efficiency and pulling power of the electric motor, its cleverly controlled interaction with the combustion engine and the premium quality and reliability of all components of the hybrid system is the result of the BMW Group’s eDrive technology. The high-voltage battery comes with a warranty which lasts for six years or 60,000 miles.
The MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 combines its progressive drive system with the versatile space concept and hallmark brand style of the latest MINI model range. The battery is housed underneath the rear seat and flat load boot floor, minimising drawbacks to boot space and leg room. The luggage compartment volume of the hybrid model is 405 litres, which can be extended to as much as 1,275 litres with the rear backrests folded down.
The new MINI Cooper SE Countryman ALL4 comes with a range of high quality standard equipment. This includes the MINI’s acclaimed Satellite Navigation System, Bluetooth, Cruise Control, Emergency E-call and Active Guard among other features. 6-speed Steptronic automatic transmission, the MINI Driving Modes and three spoke sports steering wheel are also offered as standard.
In addition to model-specific design elements such as the “E” emblem on the radiator grille and side scuttles as well as door sill finishers with a yellow “S” logo, the 17-inch light alloy wheels in Light Spoke design are another distinguishing feature exclusive to the model. Inside, hybrid-specific displays and the eDRIVE toggle switch indicate the distinctive character of the MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4.
Available to order now, the new MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 will launch in MINI Retailers on 24th June 2017 and is priced from £31,585 OTR. The vehicle is also eligible for an additional £2,500 OLEV government grant.
The Goodwood Festival of Speed will run between June 29th to July 2nd 2017.