Fifth Gear, a British TV show, compares two Austin Mini. One is a petrol engine, customised by the famous bodybuilder David Brown, with an emphasis on aesthetics. The other, an electric Mini converted by Swind. Two binoculars with very different characters. A most interesting comparison.
Retrofitted electric Mini, or restored Mini?
There’s no doubt that the pleasure behind the wheel of these two Mini is different.
In spite of its modern engine, the electric Mini of Swind keeps the original codes of the brand. Raw and friendly. Responsive thanks to its 108 hp equivalent engine, the only thing that seems to have changed is the engine noise. In spite of the advanced technology it embeds, Swind has managed to keep the same driving sensations as when it left the factory, like a go-kart.
On the other hand, bodybuilder David Brown didn’t touch the original engine and wanted to revisit this icon to make a high-end neo-retro version. The interior has been completely modernized and customized to make it a pleasant car to drive every day. The entire interior is made of leather and tweed fabric reminiscent of the colours of the bodywork. Much more cosy and warm, it seems to offer better comfort.
Youtube report from Fifth Gear: