Here’s a preview of what’s coming with the next-generation Mini Cooper.
Here you have it, folks: Meet the first new Mini hardtop model in nearly a decade. Since some folks recently caught this very car during a U.S. photoshoot, Mini decided to show us some more “favorable” shots of what’s to come with this next-generation hatch.
We won’t get a full unveiling of this car until later in the year, ahead of its European launch in 2024 (with its U.S. arrival to follow). The exterior shots reveal plenty of fresh details worth talking about, though, from the classic Mini headlights to the reshaped grille and body lines. Flesh door handles are a similar cue to newer BMW models, while you get newly shaped triangular taillights around the back.
You may notice another omission for this next-gen model. For the first time since the R50 generation launched in 2000, the black plastic fender flares are gone.
This specific car is the electric Mini Cooper S, built on a dedicated EV platform the automaker jointly developed with Chinese firm Great Wall Motors (more on that in a moment). While this car conspicuously lacks most of a conventional radiator grille and an exhaust setup, not to mention the yellow-ish badge signifying the EV, the Cooper S will launch with gas-powered versions as well. Those will come later on in 2024 or possibly early 2025, as far as we know.
Two versions of the electric Cooper will launch next year.
The base “E” version will retain its 181 horsepower figure, but will come mated to a larger 40-kWh battery, to the current-gen’s 32.6-kWh pack.
The Mini Cooper SE, on the other hand, will get a more potent 215-horsepower output, as well as a 54-kWh battery. Some reports suggest the larger pack will more than double the current electric Mini’s 110-mile driving range, but we’ll have to wait for U.S. specs for a clearer picture on that.
When it lands, the electric 2024/2025 Mini Cooper will compete against the Fiat 500e, also set to arrive later next year.
Keep in mind, since the electric Mini models come out of China (including the current one), the new electric model will still not qualify for the new $7,500 EV tax credit here in the States.
While we obviously haven’t tried it out yet, we had plenty of good experience with the current Mini Cooper SE, which Tommy summarizes below: