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Electrogenic launches £18,000 Mini EV conversion kit

by Antony Ingram
5 May 2023 2 min read
Electrogenic launches £18,000 Mini EV conversion kit
Photos: Electrogenic

Converting a classic to electric power isn’t for everyone. Whether you can’t stomach the idea of removing a car’s beating heart and replacing it with batteries, aren’t keen on the driving experience, or simply can’t afford it, there are plenty of barriers to entry.

Oxfordshire-based Electrogenic is at least lowering one of those barriers with its new plug-and-play EV conversion kit for the classic Mini, though. With a target price of £15,000 plus VAT you could never call it cheap, but compared to the thirty or forty grand that taking your car to a conversion specialist can cost, the DIY option might look a lot more tempting for some.

Electrogenic is very much one of those specialists, and we’ve tried its wares in several cars now, including one of its Minis. The tech really works, and it’s just as much of a hoot as a combustion-powered Mini, without the commotion of an old A-series thrashing away up front.

When Electrogenic calls the kit plug-and-play, it makes a convincing argument. You won’t have to hack a car to pieces to fit things – just as well, given even small shell modifications can cause trouble with the DVLA. Instead, the electric motor sits in its own subframe, so once you’ve removed the old engine and transmission wholesale on its original subframe, the new one slots straight into place. It’s fully reversible, if you wanted to return the car to standard later down the line.

The use of a fixed-ratio, single-speed transmission also makes it mechanically simpler than the last Electrogenic Mini we drove, which utilised a PSA manual gearbox. At 60bhp, power from the motor is on a par with late multi-point injected Rover Minis, while a 100lb ft torque output (at the motor – the reduction gear puts more to the wheels, just as the lower gears in a regular transmission do) is a good bump over the 70lb ft in those late A-series.

The battery pack is small compared to those you’ll find in production electric cars, but its 20kWh (also mounted on the subframe) is good for 80 miles around town. For comparison, the new Mini Electric we drove recently extracted a real-world 100 miles from 28.9kWh. Electrogenic is planning to offer an extended range option, with an additional battery pack in the boot.

The company says the kit can be fitted by any qualified mechanic, though we’re sure plenty of buyers will want to do it themselves and save a few bob.

Nice Minis aren’t cheap these days, so if you don’t already have a Mini to play with you’re looking at probably six grand or more for a clean, non-rusty 1990s Mini, £15,000 for the kit, another £3k for the VAT – call it the best part of £25k so far – and then however many hours of either yours or someone else’s labour. But if you’ve got the Mini and the means, it’s probably the most affordable way into a professionally-executed electric car conversion yet.

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