MINI Electric review: running costs & insurance
The MINI Electric is one of the most affordable electric cars you can buy, despite its premium finish, and it also promises to be cheap to run
|Insurance group||Warranty||Service interval||Annual company-car tax cost (20%/40%)|
|22-23||3yrs/unlimited miles||Variable||From £116/£232|
The MINI Electric is one of the most affordable pure-electric cars going with its starting price of £29,000 in Level 1 spec. In comparison, the MINI's main rivals – Fiat 500 and Honda e – now start from over £30,000 and £36,000 respectively.
While a shorter driving range or less practical body than those cars may be deal-breakers for some, if those factors aren't an issue for you, then the MINI is great value, especially for such a premium-feeling product. That's before you factor in savings on fuel, which will be significant given that the MINI will cost around £10 to fully charge on a domestic electricity tariff – or even less if you use off-peak tariffs.
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 1, Level 2 and Resolute Edition cars sit in group 22, with the Level 3 model commands 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. On top of this, MINI offers an extended battery warranty as standard; this guarantees the cells for eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. While not unusual, that’s competitive in this area of the market.
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. All this makes it an appealing option for private buyers and those running one as a company car.
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 is one of the most affordable electric cars you can buy, despite its premium finish, and it also promises to be cheap to run
- 4Performance, motor & drivePerformance from the MINI Electric is strong – and most importantly, the hatchback has lost none of the petrol model's sense of fun
- 5Interior, dashboard & comfortThe MINI Electric’s interior holds plenty of style appeal, but it can’t match rivals for high-tech feel
- 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 is too new to give an accurate reliability assessment yet, but the brand’s other models tend to fare well in owner surveys
- 8Living with itDid a short range and limited three-door practicality taint our time with the MINI Electric?