The MINI E is something that many of us are interested in from an advancement of technology perspective. We are also interested in it through the lens of comparison, especially in comparison with things we already know. Until now, however, there hasn’t been an opportunity to compare a MINI E with any of the other MINI models; this is where our partner site comes in.

You might remember that I reported on’s Editor-in-Chief, Lyle Dennis, taking delivery of MINI E #412. Well, as I said above, we just can’t help comparing new with the old. It is a kin to my comparing the new 2009 Dodge Challenger with the old Challenger of the ‘70s (read more here). Last month, they ran a story comparing the MINI E with a 2008 MINI Cooper S. Why the Cooper S and not the base MINI? The reasoning is sound, but it also highlights the state electric technology is in—entry price.

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Yes, entry price is the real reason here because no matter how you slice it the $850 per month lease is well above the MINI Cooper S price of about $27,000. However, the blow is softened a little when you try to reason that the MINI E puts out 204 hp, which is 32 hp more than the standard Cooper S. I think you can all see where this is going; the bottom line is that the MINI E is a remarkable machine and wins in the unlimited gas mileage category (will we need a new volts per gallon measurement?). It is also impressive in the performance department with being just a touch under 2 seconds slower 0-60 mph. The minus to the MINI E and where the Cooper S still shines: entry price, availability and performance.

Final thought: The comparison shows just how far the electric car has come and how far it still needs to go, but the thing that is different today is that I could actually see myself behind the wheel of MINI E.


Be sure to check out the full comparison over at and check our other EV stories: Subaru R1eSubaru Stella and the Chevrolet Volt