When it comes to long-range EVs, the MINI Cooper SE isn’t one of them. While an electric MINI is a good idea in general, as MINIs are small and nimble which makes them perfect for electric powertrains, the Cooper SE lacks the sort of range you’d expect from, well, any EV on the market today. With only 110 miles of total electric range, the Cooper SE can’t tackle the sort of trips that even a Chevy Bolt can. But what about a grueling, 148 mile trek up and back down a mountain?
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In this new video from The Fast Lane Car, we get to see the MINI Cooper SE attempt to do just that. What they do is take both the Cooper SE and an older MINI Cooper S with a JCW package through the Loveland Trials. To do so, both cars have to drive 74 miles uphill, climbing up to 12,000 ft of elevation, and then 74 miles back down. The point is to see how the electric car can handle the constant uphill motoring and then test how effective its regenerative braking is going back down hill.
They also test how much it costs to recharge/refill the two cars, to see which is more expensive to run for the day, and how much time it takes for both. Obviously, the MINI Cooper SE is going to take longer to recharge than the old Cooper S is to refill. However, the catch is that the Cooper SE might need to recharge twice, as the grueling uphill drive might deplete its battery before reaching the top.
This is an interesting video that tests both the range and regen capabilities of the MINI Cooper SE, so it’s certainly worth a watch. Admittedly, it’s more of a test for EVs in general, as the Cooper SE is designed more to be a city car than a long-range cruiser. It’s not really designed for mountain passes, rather it’s more for tight, urban streets. Still, it’s interesting to see how the new little electric MINI fared in a pretty difficult test.