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Inside's out on new Mini Cooper Electric. Image by MINI.

Inside's out on new Mini Cooper Electric
All-new electric Mini features a Minimalist look inspired by 1959 original.
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2024-05-15: First drive: 2024 Mini Cooper SE
2024-02-07: Mini reveals new Cooper with petrol power

What's all this about?

It's the latest in the drip-drip feed of information about the 2024 Mini Cooper Electric, the all-new successor to the current Mini Hatch. For this generation, we already know that Cooper is being made a model name, not just a trim level, but now Mini has revealed more details about the car's interior.

I see, so I presume this is your typical evolution of what's come before?

Mini is trying to put some distance between the new car and the previous generation by going back to basics. It claims to have drawn inspiration from the original Mini from 1959, a car that had just three focal points in the cabin: the steering wheel, the circular speedo in the middle of the dashboard and the bank of simple controls located below it.

Sounds like it's all gone billy basics like a Tesla...

It's not quite that minimalist (see what we did there?), but Mini has produced a video showing how the design elements match up between the old car and the new one. As the clip fades between the two models, the old car's central display becomes larger and the steering wheel shrinks in size, while the control panel in the middle of the dashboard changes shape. The new car's basic elements - door mirrors, sun visors, additional column stalks and central armrest - all morph into place, too.

While the steering wheel appears to reduce in size, this will be something of an illusion, since the new model, like all BMW-designed Minis, is far larger than the old car. The new Mini’s wheel also features three spokes and multifunction controls of course.

That central display seems like a strange place to put driving information…

Fear not, because the new Mini Cooper Electric has a head-up display directly in front of the driver for information such as speed and navigation directions. The knitted fabric dashboard (you read that right) also has LED ambient lighting within it, and this changes colour according to which Mini Experience Mode has been selected. We don't have details on what these exactly are, but they're likely to be similar to the drive modes seen on previous Minis.

Has anything else been revealed?

Mini has also shown the car's start-up animation for the central touchscreen. The so-called 'Welcome Scenario' starts with the winged Mini logo appearing on a black screen, then a series of funkily coloured dots grow from behind it, before a ring illuminates around the edge of the screen and the display finally appears.

In the video the screen itself is set up to show a central circular navigation screen, while there are additional functions located around it. The climate controls are in one corner, phone connectivity is on another part and drive mode is shown at the top, while traffic signs are displayed in an upper corner. There's no information on how the main screen will be configurable, including how Apple CarPlay or Android Auto smartphone systems will be displayed – we'll have to wait a little longer to find that out.

And when will we know more?

The new Mini Cooper Electric will be revealed in full in September at the Munich motor show, although expect further news to be issued between now and then.

Shane O'Donoghue - 21 Jul 2023

2024 MINI Cooper Electric interior. Image by MINI.2024 MINI Cooper Electric interior. Image by MINI.2024 MINI Cooper Electric interior. Image by MINI.     - Mini road tests
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