Mike Stevens | Apr 13, 2010

ITS PRODUCTION debut may be no closer to an official date, but as this new video from BMW shows, development of the all-electric MINI E is clearly going well.

Driven by Thomas Jager, a former driver in the European DTM touring car series, the electrified MINI has zapped its way to a 9:51 lap of the famed Nurburgring circuit.

While far short of the 7:26 runs of the Nissan GT-R and Corvette C6 ZR1, the MINI E's time isn't so far off the petrol-powered Volkswagen Scirocco's 9:35 lap.

“I’ve driven this circuit many times, but never in such an extraordinary car,” Jager said. “The power of the electric motor has an incredible effect, as you can access its full reserves of torque at all times.

Another element of this fascinating experience is the lack of noise from the drivetrain. All in all, that was certainly the cleanest and quietest race lap I’ve ever driven.”

The MINI E driven by Jager wasn't without some helpful (and safety-inspired) modifications however, with lightweight body components and a roll cage fitted. Suspension, brakes and tyres were also upgraded to racing specifications before attempting its run.

On the drivetrain front, the MINI E is identical to the cars being tested by BMW ahead of its eventual market launch. Power for the MINI E is provided by a 150kW electric motor, offering around 220Nm of torque, sent to the front wheels through a single-stage helical transmission.

Top speed was initially expected to be around 155km/h, but the MINI E driven to a sub-10-minute lap by Jager reached speeds up to 187km/h.

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