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First Look

This is the all-electric Mini Aceman, and it comes with a virtual dog

Starting price? £31,800. Deliveries? From November. Digital floof? Included

Published: 24 Apr 2024

Mini’s much-anticipated Aceman has finally arrived, and it will sit between the Cooper hatch and the Countryman SUV as Mini’s all-electric crossover option.

You’ll have a choice of two powertrains from the off, beginning with the ‘E’. Its 42.5 kWh battery delivers 192 miles of range on the WLTP cycle, while the 186bhp electric motor makes for a 7.9s run to 62mph.

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Not quite spicy enough? Then perhaps the ‘SE’ is the one for you, since it jumps that same electric motor to 221bhp and cuts the 62mph sprint down to 7.1s. The battery is also increased to 54.2 kWh, resulting in an improved range of 252 miles. Both are claimed to gain an 80 per cent charge within 30 minutes.

The Aceman also features an improved chassis setup that’s aided by a new damping system. It contains prestressed stabilisers which Mini says betters the steering. And comfort, obviously.

Three trim levels will be offered from launch, beginning with ‘Classic’ and built upon by ‘Exclusive’ and ‘Sport’. Mostly, their differences float between exterior paint finishes - which now includes Sunset Indigo Blue and Rebel Red - and various alloy designs and sizes which can be scaled up from 17 to 19in. The Sport trim does gain John Cooper Works-inspired bumpers and logos, though, as well as a more aggressive rear spoiler.

Step back and you realise the Aceman looks… like a Mini. And if you don’t know what one of those looks like these days, you really ought to get out more. That means short overhangs and a squat, rectangular body with minimal curves.

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The front has an octagonal grille and continues Mini’s reinvention of its archetypal spherical headlights, which in this guise are slightly more angular and packed with LED clusters.

Out wide, there’s plenty of dark body cladding protecting the lower corners of the Aceman and knitted together by the bulbous wheel arches, while the rear gets the familiar Union Jack-inspired taillights and a lower lip which, at a distance, could make Mini’s latest product look like a surprised bloat fish.

Moving inside, the three main pillars of any Mini continue to reside: the 9.4in circular OLED display, the fancy toggle bar and the Vescin steering wheel. Depending on which of the aforementioned trim levels you choose, you’ll also receive a subsequent interior finish which range between colours, materials and badging.

Regardless of which you opt for, they’re all terribly stylish. The general look is only bolstered by the ambient roof frame lighting, diagonal-facing speakers and curved dashboard, with the latter seeping through on to the door cards. You can even get a pan roof thrown on as an optional extra.

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In terms of storage space, there’s around 300 litres of it in the boot, which grows to just over 1,000 litres with the rear seats folded (mostly) flat.

Let’s run it back to that OLED screen for a second, which is equipped with the ninth-generation of Mini’s long-serving operating system. Here, you’ll be informed of many things including the vehicle’s speed and state of charge to which Taylor Swift song has inevitably made top of the charts this week. You can even get a head-up display attached, so you don’t even have to turn your head to get your Taylor Swift update.

Right beneath this is the primary toggle bar, where various functions such as the gear select, park brake and the start/stop buttons will be located. You’ll also spot a small toggle for the volume control here. But more importantly, thanks to this efficient packaging, Mini has been able to squeeze some extra Tropicana holders and a wireless phone charging tray in.

There’s also plenty of technology, the star of which has got to be Spike: Mini’s virtual four-legged assistant. Spike can help you access different navigation, communication and entertainment systems, but could be liable to the odd accident on your (virtual) home screen floor.

And while Spike won’t be able to help you park, you do get a new 12-camera park assist which identifies vacant spaces and automatically starts the manoeuvre for you. That’s… ace.

Mini boss Stefanie Wurst said: “The Aceman is perfect for navigating crowded city streets, while maintaining the versatility and functionality of a crossover and the go-kart feeling you can expect from a Mini. I am certain that the sleek design, the performance, and the versatility as a five-seater crossover, will make the Aceman a resounding success.”

And here’s what Mini’s head of design, Oliver Heilmer, had to say: “The Aceman is a strong character with its own young personality within the new Mini family. It has an independent design language, is compact and looks agile. With its distinctive expression, it is the perfect everyday companion for those who value individuality in urban areas.”

Deliveries for the Aceman will begin this November, with prices starting at £31,800 for your very own virtual floof.

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