The All-Electric Mini Cooper SE Is Made for Busy City Living

A Girls Guide To Cars | The All-Electric Mini Cooper Se Is Made For Busy City Living - Featured 1

The all-electric Mini Cooper SE is ideal for urban living.

The electric Mini Cooper is here for everyone tied to city life but who’s ready for a car of their own. If you’re thinking electric for your next car, and your life revolves around city living, this Mini Cooper SE is for you. It is cute, fun, compact (perfect for urban parking!), and fantastic to drive.

The reason I say city living is because the range of this car is 177 kilometers (114 miles) on a full charge. I was only able to get it to a 159 kilometers (99 miles) range during my week with the Mini. This would mean it could be difficult to do long commutes or road-tripping in this vehicle—but if you live in an urban area where you have tons of access to chargers and just need something for buzzing from one end of the city to the other, this is the perfect car for you. Goodbye, street parking headaches!

Related: Chilli Red and Fun for the Whole Family: Meet the 2020 Mini Cooper Countryman JCW

Mini Cooper S Electric

I love everything about this color combination. Photo: Connie Peters

Its fun-to-drive factor outweighs the lack of range.

If you have never driven an electric car, go test drive one. Now. Today. You need to experience the immediate torque of an electric car to fully grasp how amazingly fun EVs are to drive. Now add this to the usual Mini Cooper fun-to-drive factor, and you’ve got yourself a winning combination.

What does instant torque mean? When you press the gas pedal in a conventional-engined car, you’ll hear a rumble and likely experience a little delay as the engine revs up and applies power to the wheels. After all, you need to pump gas into the engine, burn it to transform gas into power, and then channel that power into the go-fast parts. But with an EV, you get to skip all those steps. The electric battery is tied directly to the wheels, so the moment you press the accelerator, you have the full force of power at your fingertips (or, more accurately, the tips of your toes).

This Mini Cooper SE has 180 horsepower and 190 lb-ft of torque, which is more than enough oomph for this small vehicle. That makes for a great power-to-weight ratio, which basically means this Mini Cooper feels like it has way more horsepower and torque than it actually does. It definitely lends it a sportier feel.

Cooper Taillights

All of the Union Jack details on the Mini Cooper SE. Photo: Connie Peters

Premier Plus Trim Ups the Luxe Factor

The test model I drove had the Premier Plus package, which includes amenities such as an enhanced Harmon/Kardon sound system (which was fantastic), head-up display, leather seating surfaces, navigation, dual sunroofs with manual shades, and emergency front and rear braking. It does add a few extra dollars to the price tag, but I’d argue that it’s well worth it. After all, who doesn’t like a little splurge now and then? Especially for the car that’s going to be transporting you through the thick of downtown traffic.

Related: This Is the Future of Electric Technology

Mini Cooper Driver Cockpit

I love all the circular elements in the Mini Cooper. Photo: Connie Peters

Technology Abounds in the Mini Cooper SE

This Mini debuts a fully-digital gauge cluster with unique startup sounds and a one-of-a-kind pop-out instrument screen that doesn’t look like any other car out there. It’s so much fun. It’s one of those touches that makes you feel like you’re getting a seriously impressive drive experience.

Starting up the Mini Cooper SE:

@xoconniepetersReply to @rog_checkosis Starting the 2021 Mini Cooper SE! ##minicooper ##mini ##carsoftiktok ##cartiktok ##cartok♬ original sound – Connie Peters

Wireless charging, wireless Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, and USB and USB-C charge ports also signal 2021 is here for the Mini Cooper SE. Do note, though, that my iPhone 11 ProMax was too large for the wireless charge pad housed inside the center console. To access this feature, you’ll need a smaller cell phone.

Related: 13 of Our Absolute Favorite Electric, Hybrid, and PHEV Vehicles

Union Jack Headrests

These headrests are everything. Photo: Connie Peters

Small Space for Small Families

Yes, the Mini Cooper SE could be a family car! It has LATCH for two car seats in the rear. However, it’s important to remember it seats four. The SE is a two-door, and there isn’t a lot of legroom behind the driver and passenger seats. You could comfortably have a couple of car seats there, and even room for a stroller in the trunk. You’re probably not going to want to put older kids, teens, or adults in the rear (and you’ll probably get tired of strapping the baby into her car seat)—at least not for long periods of time. If you have a small family, you’ll want to give the Mini Cooper SE a test drive with everyone packed inside before you make a decision.

This car is probably better suited for childless couples or single working women.


Unique badging on the Cooper SE. Photo: Connie Peters

What is regenerative braking?

Every time you brake, slow down, or go downhill, your car actually generates a form of energy called kinetic energy. In a conventional car, we don’t use this power. In an EV, though, we can channel that power into the battery—which is something called regenerative braking.

The cool thing about this technology is that your range doesn’t deplete as quickly as it might without using it. I did a 116-kilometer (72-mile) round trip in the Mini, with a 125-kilometer (78-miles) range when I got behind the wheel. When I got home, I still had 57 kilometers (35 miles) range left because of regenerative braking! It’s a seriously cool feature that’s going to transform the way you drive!


@xoconniepetersAnd this is called regenerative braking. ##ev ##rangeanxiety ##electriccar ##minicooper ##carsoftiktok ##cartiktokers♬ Astronaut In The Ocean – Masked Wolf

What does the 2021 Mini Cooper SE cost?

The electric Mini Cooper starts at CAD $39,990, or USD $29,900. The Canadian Premier+ package adds an extra CAD $8,000 and includes:

  • 17″ Mini Electric Power Spoke Perf/NRFT wheels
  • Sport leather steering wheel
  • Power folding side mirrors
  • Universal remote control
  • Panorama (dual) Sunroof
  • Auto-dimming exterior mirrors
  • Auto-dimming interior mirror
  • Anthracite headliner
  • Color Line Carbon Black interior surfaces
  • Park assistant including park distance control front/rear
  • Harman/Kardon sound system
  • Head-up display
  • Connected navigation

for a total price of CAD $47,900. The equivalent trim/packages in the US would be USD $38,250.

Related: 2020 Mini Cooper SE: What We Liked About this Cool Electric Car (for the Driver in Us All)

Who is the Mini Cooper SE for?

The Mini Cooper S E would be ideal for:

  • Single in the city
  • Urban family of 2-3
  • Empty nester who isn’t commuting
  • Dual-income-no-kids

The spunk of the Mini Cooper SE made me fall in love. I also received a lot more attention from my neighbors the week I had this cutie in my driveway, and even a request for a ride from a close friend of mine, just because it’s so fun and adorable. Just one drive, and you’ll fall in love!

Connie Peters is a mother of 3 girls in suburban Vancouver, Canada and has been an online entrepreneur since... More about Connie Peters