Mini Cooper SE Convertible Offers All-Electric Top-Down Fun

The era of fun electric cars is finally here.

byLewin Day|
Mini Cooper SE Convertible Offers All-Electric Top-Down Fun

The EV market is growing, but it still lacks a fun droptop for making the most of a summer's day. The 2023 Mini Cooper SE Convertible has burst onto the scene to change all that, as it hides an electric drivetrain beneath its delightful retro design.

The Mini Cooper SE hit the market in 2020 as the EV version of Mini's immortal classic compact. Last year, Mini saw fit to stash that drivetrain in the Mini Cooper Convertible bodyshell for a one-off concept build. Mini unequivocally stated that it wouldn't be putting the model on sale. However, it got such a positive response that Mini has now gone ahead and committed to a production run of 999 Mini Cooper SE Convertibles. The catch? They're for the European market only.

The SE Convertible will offer the same 184 horsepower as the hardtop Cooper SE. Driving the front wheels, the motor will jet the Convertible from zero to 60 mph in 8.2 seconds. It boasts a range of 125 miles on the WLTP test cycle, with Mini noting this is plenty for top-down adventures "beyond the city limits."

Mini is billing it as the world's first zero-emission premium convertible in the small car segment. As a whole, it highlights how EV tech hasn't yet permeated to mainstream fun cars yet. Other automakers are exploring concepts for hyper-powerful EV roadsters, but there's little on the market as of yet.

The soft top itself can be opened and closed at speeds of up to 30 km/h (18 mph). It comes with a Union Jack pattern sewn into the roof. That ought to make drivers popular amongst Europeans in the wake of the UK's Brexit escapades. The electric convertible manages to retain the same 5.65 cubic-feet of luggage space as the ICE-powered models.

The 999 examples will be available in Enigmatic Black and White Silver finishes. Special-edition badging will also adorn the door sills and side scuttles, highlighting the "1 of 999" status of the vehicle. The interior will also feature nods to the car's electric powertrain, including a badge on the steering wheel and yellow color accents throughout. It's just like in Pokemon—yellow means electric.

It's fun to speculate as to whether this will be a one-off production run, or something Mini will do more of in future. One hint is that the company has provided 245 press photos of this new model—one for every four it plans to build. There's more then enough here to populate a proper glossy brochure.

We'd suspect that if there's enough demand for the first 999 examples, Mini could build a lot more in future as it transition towards becoming an all-electric brand. For now though, numbers are strictly limited.

If you've wanted a convertible but have decried the lack of an affordable electric option, you need suffer no longer. As long as you're in Europe, anyway, and you're able to secure one of the few examples Mini will put on sale. Given the highly-limited production run, you'd be well advised to call your dealership and put money down today if you want to secure one for yourself. There's no word on price, but you may pay a premium for the opportunity.

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