BMW’s British small car brand MINI recently unveiled its first plug-in hybrid model, based on the next-generation Countryman SUV. The car that is currently in the prototype phase is expected to be released for sale in the second half of next year. After five long years of concluding the first field trials of the MINI E in the UK, the company further announced that it is about to hit production and will be up for an official release soon.
The hybrid boasts of a combustion engine and an electric motor that enables purely electric propulsion – a concept that is never seen before in a MINI. Those quivering to get their hands on the brand’s first plug-in can expect to look at three driving models namely the Auto e-Drive, Max e-Drive ( that enables driving on electricity alone at speeds of up to 77 mph), and Save Battery, respectively. Further, it is rumored to have a turbocharged 1.5-liter petro electric three-cylinder engine and a compact, 88-horsepower electric motor that will come mounted over the rear axle. Additionally, It’s 35kWh Li-ion battery pack, (amongst other components are located at low points) will be affixed beneath the rear seats for a low center of gravity.
Gathering from the teaser, the MINI’S next-gen Countryman will don an ultra-modern look and will clearly be taller than the current model and longer than the new Clubman (the biggest member of the squad). While the car’s trial run claimed an official range of 240km, its realistic speed range is a predicted 180 km. All said MINI’s gasoline-electric Countryman is sure to remain on every car-enthusiast’s radar until its official release!