A MINI History

The name MINI is taken from the British Motor Group’s original car, the Austin Mini and Morris Mini. They were small cars, so, in 1959, were aptly named. In 1969, ten years after their creation, the “mini” part of these two car names took over as the marque. BMW bought the Mini in 1996, when it took over Rover Group. The cars would continue to be known as Minis until, in 2003, BMW decided to capitalise. Since then, the car has been called MINI.

Once, MINIs were called Mini Coopers. These were named after racing car designer and driver, John Cooper. He was one of the key racing legends in the early days of the F1. He was also the first engineer to put the engine in the back of the car. This little change in the chassis would drastically affect the car world — both on the track and on the road — for years to come. He partnered with the British Motor Group, original owners of the Mini, back in the 1950s and 1960s and in his honour, the Mini Cooper was named after him. He remained an advisor to the Mini marque, and to BMW, until his death in 2000.

Some of BMW MINIs are still made in Oxfordshire and Birmingham, like the original Minis. And for the rest, their English heritage lives on in their names. Current models include the Clubman, an estate car designed for town driving, from club to club; the Countryman, a five-door cross-over; and the Paceman, a three-door cross-over, essentially a smaller version of the Countryman. Other names are simply descriptive: the Hard Top, Hatch, Convertible, Coupe and Roadster all do what they say on the tin.

BMW’s Electric Model

2019’s electric MINI will not be the first. In 2008, BMW unveiled the MINI E. This early electric vehicle underwent test trials in the US, UK, China and France. The most common concerns were range anxiety and the limited number of recharge stations available, still a common concern today. We understand that the new 2019 model has been developed in response to these trials. BMW has been at the forefront of electric prestige vehicles with its i3 and i3REx, and we’re excited to see the first electric MINIs to hit Australia come into the service centre.

So what’s different about the 2019 BMW E MINI?

The E MINI is based on the 3-door MINI hatchback, and boasts 0 local carbon emissions. Wholly electric, the E MINI will be released alongside the plug-in hybrid MINI Cooper SE Countryman, capable of speeds of up to 125 km/h on battery alone. Little has been revealed so far on E MINI’s specifics, so we’ll have to keep our eyes peeled! What we do now is that the marque promises the E MINI will be as zippy and urban as ever. While we wait for more MINI news, perhaps it’s time to break out that Italian Job DVD!

Volks Affair

Volks Affair are a BMW service centre in Melbourne. As independent BMW mechanics, we provide high-quality BMW services and repairs, using high-quality oils and manufacturer-approved parts. For all your BMW repairs and services, including MINI repairs, contact us today.

For more electric car news, why not read up on some of our other brands’ electronic offerings, such as the Audi E-Tron Sportback, Mercedes-Benz EQ, or Volkswagen ID Buzz. Heck, why not read about Volkswagen’s entire electric range?!