Mini will not offer manual gearboxes in any future products, according to the automaker's boss Stefanie Wurst speaking to Top Gear. Also, the company plans to get into electric vehicle racing.
"We won’t have a manual unfortunately," Mini brand boss Stefanie Wurst said about the future combustion-powered models. The automaker introduced the electric variants of the new Cooper and Countryman at the IAA Mobility show in Munich.
"I think meeting Charlie [Cooper, grandson of John Cooper] made me confident about continuing with motorsport," said Wurst. "So, we plan to go with him into electric motorsport as well."
"For me it’s just really difficult to judge right now because not all new forms of electric motorsport have been successful," she said. "Which is a good platform for the future? We’ll see what evolves and plan to join something."
Gallery: 2023 Mini John Cooper Works Bulldog Racing Edition
In August 2023, Mini gave its manual-gearbox-equipped performance models a proper sendoff by introducing the John Cooper Works Bulldog Racing Edition (pictured above). It uses a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder making 231 horsepower and 235 pound-feet of torque with a Remus exhaust and a six-speed manual. It rides on an an adjustable KW V3 suspension and 17-inch OZ HyperGT wheels with Pirelli P Zero tires. There are no rear seats in the cabin to save weight.
The newly debuted Mini Cooper EV is avalable in two trims – E and SE. The base model uses a front-mounted electric motor that makes 181 horsepower and front-mounted electric motor that develops 181 hp and 213 lb-ft of torque. It can reach 62 miles per hour in 7.3 seconds. A 40.7 kilowatt-hour battery provides a WLTP-estimated range of 189 miles.
The hotter SE variant has 214 hp and 243 lb-ft, which lets this version hit 62 mph in 6.7 seconds. A 54.2-kWh pack offers 249 miles of WLTP-estimated range.
Both trims ride on the Spotlight EV platform that comes from a collaboration between BMW Group and China's Great Wall Motor. Some production of these vehicles will take place in China.
Take a look inside the new Mini EV: