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Mini unveils new plug-in hybrid Countryman

Mini unveils new plug-in hybrid Countryman
Bilal Firfiray Bilal Firfiray Thursday 27 October 2016, 15:44 PM

Mini Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 is the British manufacturer’s first ever plug-in hybrid. Launched alongside the 2017 countryman, the car will be available internationally by June next year and is expected to subsequently make its way to India.

The plug-in hybrid uses BMW Group’s eDrive components, which was developed specifically for the Countryman. Under the hood is a 1.5-litre three-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine which produces 134bhp and 220Nm, is synchronised with an 88bhp electric motor, resulting in a combined power output of 224bhp and 385Nm. The internal combustion engine is mated to a six-speed Steptronic transmission sending power to the front wheels, whereas the electric motor directs its power to the rear axle via a two-stage single-speed transmission. This all-wheel drive system is called ALL4 and is managed by a Dynamic Stability Control system sourced from the BMW’s i8.Mini says 0-100kmph comes up in around 6.9 seconds.

There are three driving modes to choose from via an eDrive toggle. First, a standard Auto eDrive which allows the Mini to run on electric power alone up to the speed of 80kmph, after which the engine kicks in automatically for an additional push or for when the battery charge falls below seven per cent. Then there is Max eDrive which speeds up the electric drive to 125kmph, but with a range of up to 40km. Then there is a Save Battery mode, it runs the car only on the combustion engine to preserve the battery or charges it further.

The lithium-ion battery powers the electric motor. It is placed underneath the rear seat. The high-voltage battery has a capacity of 7.6 kWh. With a charging capacity of 3.6 kW, it can be fully charged in 2.15 hours, whereas charging at a regular household socket will take 3.15 hours. The connection for the charging cable is under a flap on the left-hand side on the front fender.

On the inside, the 6.5-inch screen occupies the centre dashboard. With a green theme, it displays the driving mode selected by the eDrive toggle switch and the battery charge status. Steering mounted controls with a yellow start-stop button comes standard, with an optional media package which adds a navigation system to an increased 8.8-inch touchscreen in the centre console.


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