The Mini Countryman PHEV is now available in Australia. Source: BMW
The Mini Countryman PHEV is now available in Australia. Source: BMW

Australian drivers now have another electrified vehicle option to choose from – the newly released plug-in hybrid (PHEV) version of the Mini Countryman.

Prices and availability for the Mini Countryman PHEV were released on Thursday by BMW Australia, which has been true to its word that it would release the low emissions version of the iconic Mini in the second quarter of 2019.

When we first reported on the Countryman Mini PHEV, we guessed that it would cost somewhere between $A53,900 and $A59,900,  And we weren’t wrong – the price will start at $57,000 before on road costs and extras.

This is pretty reasonable pricing from Mini, whose 2018 4X4 Mini Clubman with 170kW power retails for a very similar price at $A57,800 according to Car Sales.

The car is available to test drive in BMW show-rooms and will feature a 7.6kWh of li-ion battery packs that will deliver up to 40km of zero emissions driving.

“The MINI Countryman Plug-In Hybrid is the first step in what will be an exciting journey into the world of MINI future mobility,” said Mini Australia’s general manager Brett Waudby in a statement to the press.

“With performance on-par to the famous Countryman Cooper S but even greater efficiency, thanks to its plug-in hybrid drivetrain, the Countryman Plug-In Hybrid offers exceptional all-round performance, versatility and economy,” he said.

This plug-in hybrid Mini, which combines a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) with a battery-powered drivetrain, means it only emits 49 grams of CO2 per kilometre compared to its 170kW ICE equivalent, which emits around 178gm/km.

The 65kW of power generated on the electric drivetrain combines with 100kW from the 1.5 litre, three-cylinder engine to deliver 165kW total peak power and 385nM torque.

The Mini Countryman PHEV is now available in Australia. Source: BMW
Source: BMW

Mini’s standard “eDrive” mode allows the electric drivetrain to operate at speeds of up to 80km/hr, after which the combustion engine kicks in, and switching to “MAX eDrive” mode allows the electric drivetrain to operate at up to 125kmh.

When full throttle is requested (say going uphill), the combustion engine will kick in – a spokesperson from BMW Australia says this is to ensure safe acceleration.

As with pure electric vehicles, a regenerative braking system can recharge the battery up to 90%, effectively extending the range of the zero emissions driving for example in inner city traffic conditions.

When at home, the li-ion battery can be recharged via an optional Wallbox within 2 hours and 15 minutes and via a normal powerpoint within 3 hours and 15 minutes.

Standard specifications include:

Exterior

  • 18″ alloy wheels with silver “Pin Spoke” design
  • Body colour roof and mirror caps
  • Satin Silver roof rails and side sill mouldings
  • Radiator grille with dual chrome surround and Black honeycomb insert with S designation
  • Chrome side scuttles and exhaust tip
  • Integrated front ‘Air Curtains’
  • Integrated rear roof spoiler
  • Clear indicator lenses
  • LED Headlights
  • MINI logo projection
  • Heated exterior mirrors with washer jets
  • Countryman badging to tailgate

Interior

  • Leatherette sports seats
  • Leather sports multi-function steering wheel
  • Height adjustment for front seats
  • Hazy Grey interior trims
  • Velour floor mats in Carbon Black
  • Satellite Grey roofliner
  • Dual-zone automatic climate control with second-row seat ventilation
  • Automatic tailgate operation
  • Interactive LED lighting for central instrument display
  • Through-loading system with 40:20:40 second-row seat split
  • Two USB ports
  • Ambient lighting
Source: BMW
Source: BMW

Infotainment

  • MINI Connected e-mobility journey management system
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay
  • Mini touchscreen navigation system with 8.8-inch colour display
  • Six-speaker HiFi system
  • Bluetooth mobile preparation with wireless phone charging
  • DAB tuner
  • Remote Services, via the MINI Connected App
  • Emergency Call button in roof headliner

Driver Assist and Safety

  • Active Cruise Control, operable from 0-140km/h with Stop & Go function
  • City Crash Mitigation with pedestrian detection
  • Forward Collision Warning with visual and audio cues, plus brake pre-conditioning
  • Front and rear Park Distance Control
  • Reversing camera with guidance lines
  • Speed Limit Device
  • Speed Limit Information
  • Performance Control
  • Dynamic Traction Control including electronic differential lock

Mini is offering the Countryman PHEV with a 3-year unlimited kilometre warranty accompanied by servicing and maintenance costs covered in one all-inclusive advance payment, encompassing servicing for five year or 80,000km, that can be transferred to new owners prior to expiry.

The battery pack is warrantied for six years or 100,000km, whichever comes first.

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