The 2022 MINI Cooper SE is definitely a fun little runabout EV. It accelerates and handles well and like most MINI Coopers, puts a smile on your face when you're driving it.
However, with a tiny frame, it doesn't have a very big battery. The total capacity is only 32.6 kWh, and the usable capacity is 28.9 kWh. Therefore, the driving range kinda matches the car itself - it's mini. With an EPA-rated driving range of 114 miles, frequent road trips aren't going to be on the agenda for most Cooper SE owners.
But that's fine. Not all cars have to be used for road trips, the Cooper SE is still a great little runabout, and with a starting MSRP of about $30K, you can own one outright for about $23,000 if you qualify for the full federal tax credit and even less if there are state incentives where you live.
But let's say you did want to road trip with one, as I did in 2020 when I drove a MINI Cooper SE from New Jersey to North Carolina.
You'd want to know what to expect as far as how well the MINI Cooper SE can DC fast charge, and that's exactly what you'll learn here today.
The Cooper SE's maximum DC fast charge rate is 50 kW, and in our two DC fast charge sessions, we only saw it reach 50 kW for a very short period of time right before the charge rate begins to taper off once the state of charge reaches about 73%.
We mapped out both the full charging curve and the time to charge graph, where you can see how long it takes to add 50 miles and 100 miles of EPA-rated range as well as the range we experienced in our 70 MPH highway range test.
We charged the Cooper SE at an Electrify America 150 kW DC fast charge station, so we certainly weren't limited by the power the station could supply. With such a small battery, we wouldn't expect the Cooper SE to be able to charge at the high rates some of the other new EVs can.
However, if MINI would have upped the maximum charging power to around 70 kW to 80 kW, the Cooper SE would offer a better charging experience for quick 15-20 minute stops at a low state of charge. That would definitely be a welcomed improvement for Cooper SE owners.
For the first 15 minutes of charging, we weren't even charging above 45 kW and we were barely adding 2.5 miles of range for every minute of charging, which is super slow for DC fast charging when charging at a very low state of charge.
However, we don't think many MINI Cooper SE owners will find this too inconvenient, because they probably won't need to DC fast charge too often. Most owners will plug in at home and wake up to a full battery with about 100 miles of driving range every day, and in that context, the Cooper SE charges just fine.
Let us know your thoughts on the MINI Cooper SE's DC fast charging in the comment section below.