Electric car Mini E brings fun to max for its first driver USATODAY com

29 Апр 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Electric car Mini E brings fun to max for its first driver USATODAY com отключены
Mini E Electric Cars

By Chris Woodyard, USA TODAY

LOS As much as Peter Trepp to drive his new electric car, he quite get over the sensation.

It like someone is pulling you on a he says. Everyone just it.

Trepp is one of hundreds of motorists on the and West Coasts taking in the field trial of the Mini E, a Mini. It’s the first batch of next-generation electric given a real-world test in the by a major automaker. BMW. owns the Mini brand, now has 450 leased to customers such as and in fleets.

BMW isn’t alone big makers pushing forward electric vehicles (EVs). Motors ‘ Chevy an electric car with gasoline-powered onboard, is supposed to go on sale next year. Nissan to have pure electrics for within a couple of years, and received a $1.6 billion from the U.S. government to EVs and advanced batteries.

A head-turner

Trepp was the first for the Mini E trial, with the car near Memorial Day. He he turns heads everywhere he It’s been so much

I feel like I’ve gotten used to the torque the car

A test drive around his Pacific Palisades neighborhood what he’s talking The Mini E, converted to electric by AC Propulsion of San Dimas, Calif. from a stop. As soon as you let foot off the accelerator not a gas pedal in car the regenerative braking that charges the battery starts the car immediately.

Trepp says his expect the experience to be like a souped-up golf cart. Not so. I them to put on their seat and hang on.

Trepp, a venture capitalist in environmentally focused companies, the Mini E from a unit in his two-car garage. He uses the car for his 15-mile round-trip daily in congested Los Angeles. Mini E has a on paper of 156 miles per charge, Trepp says about 100 is proving to be realistic.

The high-voltage takes about five to completely juice up the battery.

rollout of electric cars has slowed by delays for customers to get recharging units installed. In cases, especially on the East local inspectors have at approving the units because the lack Underwriters Laboratories which is pending. That has many Mini E enthusiasts to their cars from 110-volt wall sockets up to 23 hours to fill the battery the issue is resolved, Mini E Nathalie Bauters says.

Those drivers won’t to pay their full $850-a-month lease for the car, she says, and the is expected to be fixed by the end of this

These early customers are to Mini because they are for the technology, Bauters says.

agree. The success of these programs is crucial to the movement, Chelsea Sexton. founder of the Rod Foundation, which is promoting cars.

BMW deserves credit for the first big maker to put a large of advanced EVs in consumers’ hands, says. But if it doesn’t quickly fix the issue, They are guaranteeing customers a poor experience.

Mini E Electric Cars

Unlike Toyota and GM. BMW wasn’t major automakers that on a large scale with EVs in a decade ago. While the ultimately failed because technology hadn’t matured, learned a lot about the practical of electric fleets.

Now, the Mini E field test, BMW has a to catch up, says Ed Kjaer, transportation director for Southern Edison. a large utility actively tests cars and

BMW is discovering that doing an car or doing a plug-in vehicle of any is not an easy undertaking, Kjaer But (when) BMW comes through they will have a of knowledge that they have. Dipping their toe in the is going to be good strategy for

A few ‘nits’

As Trepp lives his silver Mini E, he’s his share of little nits. He it had a center armrest. The 600-pound takes up the rear seat making the car a two-seater. I miss the in back, he says.


My wife and I went grocery We ended up (having) a bunch of in my lap.

He’s also had one big The car’s motor shut on his wife, Suzanne, while she was on the freeway, apparently having The car restarted a few minutes later.

two young sons, he kept the gas-powered vehicles: an Audi Q7 SUV and a Prius hybrid. He says if headed out of town or on an overnight he won’t take the Mini E.

But he the overall experience of piloting E No. 111 the numbers are badged on the car’s has been great. And as the first he has sort of local enviro-rock-star

Right now, it’s sexy and intriguing, Trepp I don’t go anywhere where doesn’t say, ‘Hey, the Mini E guy.’

Mini E Electric Cars
Mini E Electric Cars
Mini E Electric Cars
Mini E Electric Cars

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