Mini Cooper SE Iconic & Overcoming Range Anxiety

December 4, 2020

Mini Cooper SE Iconic & Overcoming Range Anxiety

Bri­an Tram­pler proves that you don’t need to sac­ri­fice choos­ing your dream car over get­ting an elec­tric vehi­cle. Some­times, you can get an elec­tric ver­sion of the car you want! For Bri­an, that was the Mini Coop­er which also comes in an elec­tric ver­sion. Bri­an pur­chased his Mini Coop­er SE Icon­ic on April 2, 2020 from the Schomp MINI deal­er­ship in High­lands Ranch, Col­orado. He took advan­tage of the $4,000 (2020) state tax cred­it and the $7,500 fed­er­al tax cred­it, mak­ing his car the low­est cost brand new EV on the mar­ket, and $20,000 cheap­er than some gas-pow­ered cars! He’s dri­ven his car almost every day since and has des­ig­nat­ed it as his “pri­ma­ry around town car,” due to its afford­abil­i­ty with charg­ing costs com­pared to gas expens­es, its con­ve­nience, and its fun factor.

Bri­an loves this car because it dri­ves exact­ly as a gas-pow­ered Mini does, but with­out any of the harm­ful emis­sions or gas costs. It has the exact same body and fea­tures aside from the inter­nal com­bus­tion engine, and shares an elec­tric dri­ve sys­tem with the BMW i3. Bri­an has test dri­ven many Mini’s in the past and was get­ting ready to pur­chase one a few years ago, but when Mini announced that there would be an elec­tric ver­sion, he opt­ed to wait for the elec­tric car to be released. His Mini Coop­er SE is fun to dri­ve, com­pact, has all the same stan­dard safe­ty fea­tures as oth­er non-elec­tric Mini’s do, includ­ing Active Brakes, Dynam­ic Sta­bil­i­ty Con­trol, Cor­ner­ing Brake Con­trol, Head-Up Dis­play, Adap­tive Cruise Con­trol, Crash Sen­sor Sys­tem, and a Rollover Pro­tec­tion Bar. It’s also equipped with seat warm­ers, which makes it warm dur­ing the winter.

Before his Mini, Bri­an was dri­ving a Toy­ota Prius. The biggest dif­fer­ence between the two are main­te­nance costs and the bat­ter­ies of the cars. While the Prius has an elec­tric bat­tery, it is still a hybrid, mean­ing that Bri­an still had to get more main­te­nance done for the car, like oil changes. With his Mini Coop­er EV, he won’t have to go in for main­te­nance until the end of next year for small­er, more afford­able touchups. The Mini Coop­er EV is com­plete­ly bat­tery-elec­tric, so Bri­an nev­er has to pay for gas. He charges at home with a Lev­el 2 charg­er that goes from 0 to 100% in 4 hours.

We also spoke with Bri­an about range anx­i­ety, the fear that a vehi­cle has insuf­fi­cient range to reach its des­ti­na­tion. Some EV dri­vers or prospec­tive EV own­ers may be con­cerned about range anx­i­ety when the bat­tery charge is low because charg­ing your car may not be as acces­si­ble as fill­ing up at a gas sta­tion. When asked about range anx­i­ety, Bri­an stat­ed nev­er hav­ing expe­ri­enced it, even though his car gets an aver­age range of 120 miles, which is on the low­er range of elec­tric vehi­cles. With advanced plan­ning, Bri­an has dri­ven to Breck­en­ridge and back from the Den­ver Met­ro­pol­i­tan area. He’s also dri­ven many back canyon roads and made 100+ mile road trips with charg­ing only at his des­ti­na­tion. He’s also used DC fast charg­ers on his trips, which can get an 80% charge in half an hour. Bri­an rec­om­mends plan­ning your trip if you know you’ll be dri­ving long dis­tances and remain­ing knowl­edge­able and real­is­tic about your car’s range. In addi­tion, uti­lize Charge­Point to find free charg­ing sta­tions on the way!

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