We reported yesterday about the MINI brand’s shift to electric vehicles - the plan is to not launch a new ICE model after the year 2025 and stop selling ICE vehicles altogether in the early 2030s. This means that the next generation MINI hatchback will be offered in both gas-burning and fully-electric guises, and it’s the latter that was snapped up by our spies.
This very early prototype/mule still leaves a lot to the imagination. Chances are the basic body shape might be that of the future production vehicle, but it does look a bit cobbled together. The front and rear light rings don’t quite seem to match and the vehicle is missing a big piece of side sill that should have hidden what is either a chassis rail or the actual battery pack.
Gallery: 2023 MINI Cooper SE
According to our spies, this new MINI will buck the trend of cars getting bigger and bigger with each new generation (a trend that the MINI has so far been a part of, as it’s grown progressively with each of the three new incarnations). They say this new car will actually be a bit smaller and they also got a peek inside the vehicle where a big curved display took center stage.
We don’t exactly know when this fourth-gen MINI is expected to debut, but some are speculating that it could be around the year 2023. We’ll have to wait and see if the electric model will need to be changed as much as the current one is compared to the gas-burning MINI.
For the current generation Cooper SE, MINI has had to not only increase its ride height, but also fit it with different wheel arch covers and side skirts to try to mask the fact that the vehicle is, in fact, slightly taller. Some have attributed this to the fact that the current MINI was not necessarily designed with electrification in mind and that the decision to make a pure-EV variant was taken after the design had been signed off.