I don't envy the designers who have to create a new generation of Mini Cooper. With a look as iconic as the Mini's, you can't stray too far from its roots or traditionalists will revolt. You also can't play it too safe or it'll be panned for being derivative. There's a fine line the styling team has to walk and they may have done so successfully with this new electric 2025 Mini Cooper.
This is our introduction to the generation that replaces the previous Mini, which debuted back in 2013—an ancient artifact in the automotive world. With the 2025 Mini comes a design that's indeed new but still familiar. And while it's bigger than ever before, its tall windows and short overhangs still make it look small, like a proper modern Mini.
Up front, it's pretty typical of any other Mini model, with two round headlights and a grille that's reminiscent of a largemouth bass. However, out back, it gets triangular taillights that each feature half of the Union Jack flag. The flag taillight design was cute for about five minutes, a decade ago, but it's overplayed now and I wish Mini would just relegate the gimmick to an option and give the Cooper normal-looking taillights. Maybe it's your cup of tea, though.
Inside is where the biggest changes are made. Mini may have taken an evolutionary approach to its exterior design but it has given the car's interior a comprehensive overhaul. Its steering wheel has a unique three-spoke design with a funky bottom spoke, its dashboard is appropriately empty, and it brings back the center, dash-mounted circular speedometer. A small panel of toggle switches underneath said speedo controls the windows and drive modes, and there are lights built into the dashboard and door card material allowing it to glow from underneath.
Speaking of that speedometer, it doubles as an infotainment screen. It's much larger than the circular screen of the previous-gen car, so Mini was able to pack a ton of information into it without it feeling cluttered, and it looks surprisingly simple at first glance. Like most cars with digital gauges, the new Mini's circular screen features different graphics options; in this case, they're based on the driver's chosen Experience Mode. There's even a fun Go-Kart Mode that adjusts chassis agility as well as steering response and traction control intervention—the screen glows red for that one.
Overall, this new Mini's cabin is the closest it's been to the original since BMW took over the brand in the late '90s. It's simple, airy, and features the classic central speedo and toggle switch bar combo. It isn't quite as cavernous as Alec Issigonis' original design but it's as close as you'll get from a 21st-century Mini.
Under the skin, this new Mini isn't anything like the original. In the case of the new Mini Cooper E, it gets an entirely electric powertrain, though a similarly styled gas version is on its way. Up front is a single electric motor making 184 horsepower, and if you step up to the Cooper SE, you get 218 horsepower. The Cooper E hits 60 mph in 7.3 seconds but the Cooper SE shaves off a few tenths, dropping that sprint to 6.7 seconds.
The Mini Cooper E packs a 40.7-kilowatt-hour battery, which gives it 190 miles of WLTP-rated range. Bumping up to the Cooper SE brings a 54.2-kWh battery that increases range to 250 miles.
Mini isn't reinventing the wheel with the new three-door Cooper and for good reason. It's a formula that's worked for almost 65 years. However, for this new generation, Mini updates that formula for the modern era of electrification, and at least from what I can see, it looks promising.
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