If you live in Los Angeles or in the New York/New Jersey metro area and want an electric Mini Cooper pay attention.
Starting today you can apply to be one of the 500 lucky people taking part in a year-long field trial (no, you can't keep it afterwards) of the Mini E. That's the good news. The less good news is that you're going to have to pony up $850 per month (plus some up front fees and sales tax; not to mention liability insurance) for the privilege of giving Mini feedback on the performance of the car.
Here are some more details on the requirements for participation and on the Mini E's specs:The Fine Print: Field Trial Requirements
First off, the application period ends December 10th—so get on it. Secondly, these are just some of the requirements:
You need access to a garage with an electric system that a Mini-supplied electrician deems suitable. This is so Mini can install the charging station in your house. You are responsible for any wiring upgrades necessary to bring your electric system up to Mini's specification.
You have to have had a drivers license for 5 years and have a clean driving record.
You have to be willing to bring the Mini E for service at the appointed interval and give Mini "reasonable feedback", which includes taking online surveys, keeping a log book, etc.
The Fun Part: The Mini E Specs
Obviously these may be tweaked in the full production version: The Mini E is listing as having 150 kW of power, 220 Nm of torque and a weight of 3,230 pounds (that's about 500 pounds heavier than your ordinary Mini). Acceleration is listed as 8.5 seconds 0-60 mph, with an electronically limited top speed of 95 mph. The range is listed as 104 miles under a mix of driving conditions, with a maximum range under ideal conditions of 156 miles. Charging the Mini E will take approximately 3.5 hours.
Still want in? Be warned that filling out the application form will take at least an hour. Oh, the Mini E is strictly a two seater (those are the batteries behind the front seats in the image below).
More at: Mini E Field Trial
all images: Mini USA
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