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The Hybrid Conundrum, Part 1 of 5

Without government regulations and incentives, will the consumer demand exist to support production ...

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Mini E

The Mini E is, almost by definition, a city commuter given the fact that the rear seat and cargo area has been given over to the battery packs.

Mini E(LECTRIC), Part 2 of 5

The first product from BMW's "project i" mobility program, the Mini E swaps gasoline power for electric, a fuel tank-including the rear seats and most of the luggage space-for lithium-ion batteries, and a range of 488 miles per tank of gas for 150 miles per full charge.

The first product from BMW's "project i" mobility program, the Mini E swaps gasoline power for electric, a fuel tank-including the rear seats and most of the luggage space-for lithium-ion batteries, and a range of 488 miles per tank of gas for 150 miles per full charge. The car will be built at the Mini plant in Oxford, England, but will be transferred sans drive components to BMW's Munich, Germany, plant where the electric drivetrain and batteries will be fitted. The transversely mounted electric motor has an output of 204 hp and 220 Nm (162 lb-ft) of torque and is mated to a single-stage helical gearbox. BMW claims the 3,230-lb. Mini E can sprint from 0-60 mph in 8.5 seconds; its top speed is electronically limited to 95 mph. The lithium-ion batteries have a maximum capacity of 35 kWh, and transmit energy to the electric motor as direct current at a nominal 380 volts from a bundle made up of 5,088 cylindrical cells grouped into 48 modules and three battery packs. A full recharge draws 28 kWh of electricity through a BMW-supplied wall box that uses 440-volt service to fully recharge the pack in 2.5 hours. In addition, approximately 75% of all deceleration in city driving is done through regenerative braking alone, which can increase range by up to 20%. Folks in California and New York/New Jersey will split the 500 Mini Es, which will be leased to select drivers and businesses for one year, and serviced by specially trained technicians. Information drawn from this program will be used by project i management to help in the creation of further EVs for both BMW and Mini.-CAS