Mini Cooper E Classic adds a less expensive trim, at least in Europe – Autoblog


One forgets how many variations there are on the Mini Cooper until Mini rolls out a new generation and they all come quickly. With this fifth-generation Cooper forking into an EV lineup, and Mini introducing ICE and EV ranges separately, every other month it’s, “Oh look, another one!” This time it’s details on a new trim of the Cooper E that Mini debuted in Munich last September. We also have photos of the Euro-spec version now, which were missing from the debut. Called Classic, it’s the entry-level version of the battery-electric two-door hardtop hatchback that, in the UK, comes below the Exclusive and Sport trims. Our trim step for the previous-gen electric Cooper is Classic, Signature, and Iconic.

A commenter chided us on a previous post for waiting until the end to mention U.S. availability, so let’s get this out of the way now: We don’t know if the Cooper E is coming to America. We know we’ll get the SE, same as before. We’d support the decision to bring the E here; with the right color combo and wheels, here’s your Alec Issigonis special — on the outside, at least — for maybe a couple grand less than the Cooper SE. However, based on the European configurators, we don’t see much point.     

Every Cooper E gets a 40.7-kWh battery powering an e-motor on the front axle making 181 horsepower and 214 pound-feet of torque, able to go an estimated 190 WLTP miles on a charge. That’s 34 horses and 29 pound-feet down on the SE, which isn’t so bad. Driving distance is the attention-getter, the E losing 60 miles of estimated range from the SE’s 250 WLTP miles.       

We all know “Classic” means pared spec, but the Classic is so close to the trim above that it’s hard to tell what’s been changed beyond the standard wheel and a few options. In the UK, saving £2,200 ($2,769 U.S.) to get the Classic instead of the Exclusive trim above means getting a 16-inch standard wheel and a cloth interior trimmed in synthetic leather. The Exclusive starts with a 17-inch wheel and offers two 18-inchers, the Classic is a 16- or 17-inch wheel only. And the Exclusive interior fits mainly synthetic leather seats with cloth uppers. Either cabin comes in a choice of two colors, either black or gray, the Classic with a perforated houndstooth pattern on the seats. On the other hand, the Sunny Side Yellow paint on the hero car above is only available on the Classic. The list of standard features between the two is identical. Buyers in Germany have it even better, the Classic trim there sitting above an Essential trim, and offering six colors and three wheels. 

In the UK, the least expensive Cooper E on offer at the moment costs an EV premium of £7,000 ($8,809 U.S.) more than the least expensive ICE-powered Cooper; that differential in Germany is 4,000 ($4,300). The last-gen 2024 Mini Cooper SE starts at $30,900 here, our ICE-powered 2025 Cooper is going to start at $29,945. We still don’t know U.S. pricing for the Cooper SE, but we’d be surprised to see the Cooper E head this way in any form unless the new Fiat 500e takes off.

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