Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
bmw to lease ca mini ev

Cypselus von Frankenberg. Now that's what I call a name. (Even Mel Brooks would approve.) It belongs to MINI's spokesman. When Cypselus (can I call you Cypselus?) isn't busy calling media outlets to tell them to CAPITALIZE THE GOD DAMN NAME FOR CHRIST'S SAKE, he's updating journalists on the latest MINI variant. Did you know the MINI Mars Lander is due soon? Speaking of which, Automotive News [sub] reveals that the German-owned British brand is going to sell an electric vehicle version of the Cooper in the Golden State. "The [500] electric Minis [ARRGGGHHHH] are being built at the Mini [NOOOOOOO] factory in Oxford, England, without engines, gearboxes or fuel tanks, then shipped to Munich, Germany, where they are being fitted with electric powertrains." Needless to say BMW will take a bath on every EV MINI they sell. But the PR value will be priceless. Not only will the vehicles help satisfy CA Zero Emissions regs, but they'll be "leased to selected customers" (i.e. Hollywood's green glitterati). Hang on; how will bystanders distinguish an EV MINI from a "regular" MINI? "The electric Minis are painted silver and have yellow roofs." Although range and recharge times are unspecified (of course), it's unlikely that EV MINI will be slower than the original, 1.4-liter, 90hp MINI ONE, a vehicle that kept bumping into itself (i.e. it couldn't get out of its own way). But it's not impossible.

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4 of 16 comments
  • Yankinwaoz Yankinwaoz on Jul 09, 2008

    Actually, with European nations pushing hard to implement carbon footprint taxes, this might actually give BMW a nice break from them.

  • Shaker Shaker on Jul 09, 2008

    It would be cool to see how they implement this, as an old "new" MINI (hooray) with a blown engine would have another upgrade path (for the brave at heart). The all-caps MINI is the joke, kinda like "jumbo shrimp".

  • Andy D Andy D on Jul 09, 2008

    Faster than a Tesla?

  • Mirko Reinhardt Mirko Reinhardt on Jul 10, 2008

    Hey, that's the Courréges Zooop in the picture. Do I win something because I know that it has a 150 kW AC Propulsion drivetrain, weighs 690 kg and runs on lithium polymer batteries? It competed in the Challenge Bibendum a few years ago. Courréges always gets some colorful Michelins.