[Oeva-list] Fwd: A New Experience - Driving Pleasure Without Emissions: the MINI E.
jeff.shorepower at gmail.com
Mon Oct 20 14:17:27 PDT 2008
Maybe I won't have to build one now....
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WOODCLIFF LAKE, N.J., Oct 18, 2008 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- The BMW Group
will be the world's first manufacturer of premium automobiles to deploy a
fleet of some 500 all-electric vehicles for private use in daily traffic.
The MINI E will be powered by a 150 kW (204 hp) electric motor fed by a
high-performance rechargeable lithium-ion battery, transferring its power
to the front wheels via a single-stage helical gearbox nearly without a
sound and entirely free of emissions. Specially engineered for automobile
use, the battery technology will have a range of more than 240 kilometers,
or 150 miles. The MINI E will initially be made available to select private
and corporate customers as part of a pilot project in the US states of
California, New York and New Jersey. The possibility of offering the MINI E
in Europe as well is currently being considered. The MINI E will give its
world premiere at the Los Angeles Auto Show on November 19 and 20, 2008.
The MINI E's electric drive train produces a peak torque of 220 Newton
meters, delivering seamless acceleration to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 8.5
seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 152 km/h (95 mph).
Featuring a suspension system tuned to match its weight distribution, the
MINI E sports the brand's hallmark agility and outstanding handling.
By introducing the MINI E, the BMW Group is underscoring the resolve with
which it works towards reducing energy consumption and emissions in road
traffic. The BMW Group is drawing on its unique technological expertise in
the field of drive systems to develop a vehicle concept enabling zero
emissions without renouncing the joy of driving. Putting some 500 cars on
the road under real daily traffic conditions will make it possible to gain
widely applicable hands-on experience. Evaluating these findings will
generate valuable know-how, which will be factored into the engineering of
The BMW Group aims to start series production of all-electric vehicles over
the medium term as part of its Number ONE strategy. The development of
innovative concepts for mobility in big-city conurbations within the scope
of "project i" has a similar thrust, as its objective also includes making
use of an all-electric power train. The energy storage unit: cutting-edge
lithium-ion technology engineered specifically for use in the MINI.
Based on the current MINI, the car will initially be available as a
two-seater. The space taken up by back-seat passengers in the series model
has been reserved for the lithium-ion battery. When in use in the
zero-emissions MINI, the battery unit combines high output with ample
storage capacity and a small footprint with power ratios that are
unrivalled in this field of application so far. The lithium-ion storage
unit will have a maximum capacity of 35 kilowatt hours (kWh) and transmit
energy to the electric motor as direct current at a nominal 380 volts. The
rechargeable battery is made up of 5,088 cells grouped into 48 modules.
These modules are packaged into three battery elements that are compactly
arranged inside the MINI E.
The energy storage unit's basic components are based on the technological
principle that has proven itself in practice in power supplies for mobile
phones and portable computers. The MINI E's lithium-ion battery can be
plugged into all standard power outlets. Its charge time is strongly
dependent on the voltage and amperage of the electricity flowing through
the grid. In the USA, users can recharge a battery that has been completely
drained within a very short period of time using a wallbox that will ship
with every MINI E. The wallbox will be installed in the customer's garage,
enable higher amperage, and thus provide for extremely short charging
times. Wallboxes fully recharge batteries after a mere two-and-a-half
Driven by electricity: reliably, affordably and free of emissions.
A full recharge draws a maximum of 28 kilowatt hours of electricity from
the grid. Based on the car's range, a kilowatt hour translates into 5.4
miles. Besides the benefit of zero-emissions driving, the MINI E thus
offers significant economic advantages over a vehicle powered by a
conventional internal combustion engine as well. The heavy-duty battery
delivers its power to an electric motor, which transforms it into thrilling
agility. Mounted transversely under the MINI E's bonnet, the drive train
unleashes its full thrust from a dead standstill. This provides for the
car's fascinating launch capability. The MINI E's intense driving
experience is augmented by its dynamic deceleration potential, which is
also directly coupled to the accelerator pedal. As soon as the driver
releases the gas pedal, the electric motor acts as a generator. This
results in braking force, and the power recovered from the kinetic energy
is fed back to the battery. This interaction ensures extremely comfortable
drives - especially at medium speed with constant, but marginal, variation.
In city traffic, some 75 percent of all deceleration can be done without
the brakes. Making substantial use of this energy recuperation feature
extends the car's range by up to 20 percent.
Signature MINI agility in a new guise.
Weighing in at 1,465 kilograms (3.230 lbs), the MINI E has an even weight
distribution. Minor modifications made to the suspension ensure safe
handling at all times. The Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system has been
adapted to this model's specific wheel loads. The MINI E's brake system
comes with a newly developed electric underpressure pump. Its Electrical
Power Assisted Steering (EPS) is the same as the one used in mass-produced
MINIs. Both brake and steering assistance react to driving conditions and
are thus extremely efficient. Even the air conditioning's electrical
compressor only operates if desired or necessary.
Design: unmistakably MINI, undoubtedly new.
At first glance, the MINI E is obviously an iteration of the brand. But its
design, which is the blueprint for the zero-emissions two-seater, has been
complemented by a number of visual cues that point to its revolutionary
drive concept. All of the units produced for the pilot project will have
the same paintwork and bear a serial number on their front fenders. The
MINI E's coachwork sports an exclusive combination of metallic Dark Silver
on all panels but the roof, which is clad in Pure Silver. What
distinguishes the zero-emissions MINI is a specially designed logo in
Interchange Yellow, depicting a stylized power plug in the shape of an "E"
set against the silver backdrop. It has been applied to the roof, in
smaller dimensions to the front and back, to the charger port lid, the
dashboard trim, and - combined with the MINI logo - to the door jamb, in
slightly modified form. The color of the roof edges, mirror housings,
interior style cues and seat seams will match the logo's yellow tone as
Moreover, the central gauge and the battery level indicator behind the
wheel of the MINI E, which replaces the MINI's rev counter, feature yellow
lettering against a dark grey background. The battery level is displayed in
percentage figures. The central gauge includes an LED display indicating
power consumption in red and power recuperation in green.
MINI E customers will be part of a pioneering mission.
A 500-unit, limited-production MINI E series will be manufactured through
the end of 2008. The project will thus attain an order of magnitude that
clearly exceeds the size of currently comparable test series. Putting the
MINI E on the road on a daily basis will be a pioneering feat to which both
the drivers and engineers of the first zero-emissions MINI will contribute
as a team.
MINI E customers will join forces with BMW Group experts to assist in the
project's scientific evaluation. MINI E engineers accord high importance to
staying in touch with the drivers on a regular basis, as this will help
them analyze driver behavior besides vehicle characteristics in order to
gain the most accurate and realistic picture of the demands placed on a
vehicle with a purely electrical drive in the select usage areas.
Special charging station and full service for every MINI E.
The cars will change hands based on a one-year lease with an extension
option. Monthly lease installments will cover any required technical
service including all necessary maintenance and the replacement of wearing
parts. At the end of the lease, all of the automobiles belonging to the
project will be returned to the BMW Group's engineering fleet where they
will be subjected to comparative tests. The MINI E's lithium-ion battery
can be charged using a wallbox provided to MINI customers. Only lockable
garages or similar buildings will qualify as homebases and power stations
for the MINI E.
Maintenance by qualified specialists.
The electric drive's high-voltage technology requires that maintenance work
be done by qualified personnel using special tools that are not included in
MINI service partners' standard toolboxes. In light of this, a service base
will be set up on both coasts, staffed by service engineers that are
specially trained to perform maintenance and repair work on the MINI E's
electrical components. In the event of drive malfunction, these experts
will provide professional support at the customer's local MINI dealer or
the service base's specially equipped workshop. Technical inspections will
take place after 3,000 miles (just under 5,000 kilometers) and at least
after six months.
Production in Oxford and Munich.
The MINI E has already gone through the major phases of product development
for mass-produced vehicles and passed numerous crash tests on the way.
Aspects investigated besides passenger protection were the impact of
collision forces on the lithium-ion battery and finding a non-hazardous
location for it in the car. The MINI E's energy storage unit emerged
completely unscathed from all of the crash tests mandated by US standards,
which are especially high.
Production of the approximately 500 cars will take place at the company's
Oxford and Munich sites and is scheduled for completion before the end of
2008. MINI's UK plant will be responsible for manufacturing the entire
vehicle with the exception of the drive components and the lithium-ion
battery, with the brand's series models rolling off its assembly lines
concurrently. The units will then be transferred to a specially equipped
manufacturing complex situated on BMW plant premises where the electric
motor, battery units, performance electronics and transmission will be
To download photos and technical specifications for the MINI E, please
visit the BMW Group PressClub at www.press.bmwgroup.com.
MINI in the US
MINI is an independent brand of the BMW Group. In the United States, MINI
USA operates as a business unit of BMW of North America, LLC which has been
present in the United States since 1975. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLC
began distributing vehicles in 2003. The BMW Group in the United States has
grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for
the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and
the Rolls-Royce brand of Motor Cars; DesignworksUSA, an industrial design
firm in California; a technology office in Silicon Valley and various other
operations throughout the country. BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC in South
Carolina is part of BMW Group's global manufacturing network and is the
exclusive manufacturing plant for all Z4 models, X5 Sports Activity
Vehicles and X6 Sport Activity Coupes. The BMW Group sales organization is
represented in the U.S. through networks of 338 BMW passenger car centers,
335 BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 142 BMW motorcycle retailers, 83
MINI passenger car dealers, and 30 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers. BMW (US)
Holding Corp., the BMW Group's sales headquarters for North, Central and
South America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.
Information about BMW Group products is available to consumers via the
SOURCE The BMW Group
Copyright (C) 2008 PR Newswire. All rights reserved
Chief Operating Officer
Direct (503) 686-8844
Office (503) 892-7345
jkim at shorepower.com
New contact information:
2351 NW York Street
Portland, OR 97210
Fax (503) 802-7347
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