MINI Electric review: running costs & insurance
The MINI Electric isn't as cheap as it once was, but it should be very affordable to run
|Insurance group||Warranty||Service interval||Annual company-car tax cost (20%/40%)|
|22-23||3yrs/unlimited miles||Variable||From £130/£260|
The MINI Electric is one of the more affordable electric cars, although it does now start from over £32,000 as MINI dropped the base Level 1 spec from the lineup. In comparison, the MG4 starts from just under £27k, while the similarly-sized BYD Dolphin can be had for around £25,500.
If a short driving range and tight interior aren’t too much of an issue to you, the MINI Electric can almost be deemed good value – especially given its strong residuals. It may be quite a bit more expensive to buy than a petrol MINI, but the Electric should offer rock-bottom running costs across the board.
MINI Electric insurance group
The MINI Electric, despite its lively performance and desirable badge, sits in insurance groups 22 to 23, depending on spec. The Level 2 and Resolute Edition cars sit in group 22, with the Level 3 model commanding a group 23 rating. This is probably due to the relatively simple electric drivetrain; with fewer moving parts, there's less to go wrong, which can often result in more affordable insurance. Regardless, those numbers are quite low, especially when you consider a comparable petrol Cooper S is rated in group 25. Even the latest Renault ZOE, despite its less ‘premium’ badge, sits in groups 25-29.
Like all new MINI and BMW models sold in the UK, the Electric has a three-year/unlimited-mileage manufacturer warranty. The MG4, however, has a four-year warranty, while Kia Soul EV Urban gets a near-unbeatable seven years of cover. MINI does offer an extended battery warranty as standard, though; this guarantees the cells for eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first.
MINI is offering a basic four-year service package for the Electric at £10 a month. As part of this, customers also benefit from “all the necessary fluid top-ups, one MoT, a wash and vacuum, plus seasonal health checks”. Buyers can bolster the package to cover servicing plus all four tyres (£20 a month), or servicing and brakes (pads and sensors, also £20 a month).
Should you want the full package, with all servicing, tyres and brakes included, MINI will charge you £30 per month – a theoretical saving of £10 per month. As the MINI Electric’s service plan is condition-based, it’s not possible to nail down service intervals. How often you need your car serviced will depend on myriad factors including your driving style and how many miles you do.
As an electric car, the MINI Electric is currently exempt from vehicle excise duty (VED). It also sits in the very lowest company-car tax band, as the Benefit-in-Kind (BiK) tax rate for all electric cars is fixed at 2% until at least April 2024 – business drivers could pay as little as £130 per year to drive the MINI Electric. All this makes it an appealing option for private buyers and those running one as a company car.
The MINI Electric is quite expensive for a supermini, so you’ll be pleased to know that it’s forecast to hold onto a little more of its initial value than its competitors; you can expect the plug-in MINI to retain anything between 46-50% of its asking price over three years and 36,000 miles. This is more than the Nissan Leaf which is, at best, only predicted to be worth around 37% of its cost from new after the same period.
In This Review
- 1VerdictThe MINI Electric is a fun, fast and chic small electric car, but its relatively modest driving range may put some buyers off
- 2Range, battery & chargingA relatively modest 145-mile range may put some buyers off the MINI Electric, but for a lot of suburban and urban dwellers, that'll be enough
- 3Running costs & insurance - currently readingThe MINI Electric isn't as cheap as it once was, but it should be very affordable to run
- 4Performance, motor & driveThe MINI Electric delivers on the brand's promise of 'go-kart' handling
- 5Interior, dashboard & comfortThe MINI Electric has a stylish, premium-feeling cabin - but rivals are starting to offer better tech
- 6Boot space, seating & practicalityThe MINI Electric isn't particularly practical, but the interior and boot are at least the same size as the petrol model's
- 7Reliability & safety ratingThe MINI Electric should be reliable and safe thanks to a suite of safety systems
- 8Living with itDid a short range and limited three-door practicality taint our time with the MINI Electric?