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Monday, October 4, 2010

Mini showing three concepts for an electric scooter

Sep 24, 2010   05:35 AM

By Ansgar Photography
Looks like BMW's Mini is serious about getting into the electric scooter business. If it isn't, maybe Mini thinks this is how it can fake its way through the Paris Motor Show next month, since it doesn't have any new car models to unveil..Mini revealed three concepts today for a Mini Scooter E -- the E stands for "electric" -- with the idea that scooters might be logical extension of the brand known for small but classy urban transportation. Two of the scooters will be shown at the Paris Motor Show, where Mini made its modern-day debut 10 years ago.
The goal, Mini said, was to meet the needs of the young urban generation:
It wanted the scooters to be "spontaneous, flexible, CO2-free mobility. Using a smartphone as the ignition key, the concept integrates infotainment, communication and navigation systems."
The scooters have an electric motor with a battery that can be recharged at a conventional power socket with the onboard charging cable.
The scooters ape the Mini cars in a number of ways -- a circular central instrument cluster, a Mini-style speedometer, prominent turn indicator lamps in the style of the classic Mini and the chrome trims on the bodywork. The three concepts, however, differ:
  • The first Mini Scooter E Concept is a two-seater variant in the color scheme of the Mini electric hatchback now being tested in Europe.
  • The second concept is a single-seater and the sportiest of the new concepts. It has a brown upholstered seat and is done in British Racing Green.
  • The third is a two-seater that's being shown exclusively in London. It takes inspiration from the popular culture of the 1960s Britain -- yeah, baby! -- a decade synonymous with the classic Mini, drawing on the distinctive graphics of the Mod era in particular. It's white and picks up motifs from the colors of the Royal Air Force.

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