You are currently viewing The new electric Mini Cooper SE deems an OLED display absolutely revolutionary

The Mini Cooper SE, launched in 2019, represents the British brand’s first step into the field of electric cars, after launching a limited edition of just 500 units of the Mini E model in 2008. Responding to the European Union’s desire to promote electric cars, the company is forced to include electric vehicles in its line-up. Against this backdrop, it is preparing to renew its range of city cars with a brand-new generation.

MINI makes a major leap into the digital age by integrating a new technological advance: the central circular OLED screen with a diameter of 24 cm. Offered as standard equipment, it blends seamlessly into the interior of the new MINI family, illuminating the cabin with vivid colors. Its strategic position makes it easy to use for both driver and front passenger.

With the new MINI family, we’re taking a huge step into the digital world, while perpetuating the brand’s characteristic heritage. The emblematic central screen of the new MINIs is circular, and for the first time offers content adapted to this shape. I’m convinced that the digital power of the new models will delight our customers all over the world“, says Stefanie Wurst, MINI Brand Director.

To give you an overview of this technology, an OLED screen is equipped with individual pixels and numerous diodes, enabling it to offer improved brightness, more vibrant colors and superior contrast thanks to deeper blacks (the diodes turn off). This screen offers a panoramic viewing angle for optimal comfort. The screen’s enhanced responsiveness means that movements can be reproduced more realistically, without sacrificing detail. By exploiting this technology, it is possible to design extra-flat, soft or even flexible screens, paving the way for innovative curved shapes.

In Mini’s cockpit, below the integrated screen, a few buttons will remain despite its touchscreen, in the form of “toggle” keys, similar to those offered by Peugeot. It seems that the company is taking its cue from Peugeot, which has also unveiled the cockpit of its forthcoming electric 3008. However, in contrast to this city car, the Mini is not equipped with a digital instrument cluster, but only with a head-up display.

Undoubtedly, the true highlight of this technology is the software running on this screen, which is known as Mini Operating System 9. It’s an entirely new software suite built from scratch, and you can say farewell to the traditional BMW iDrive control knob. In addition, the content displayed on the screen is largely influenced by the selected “Experience Mode“. These modes include Core, Go-Kart, Green, Balance, Timeless, Vivid, and Personal. In Core mode, drivers will have a straightforward interface showcasing navigation, media, and phone status spread out across the screen. While the other modes bring significant changes, certain elements remain consistent in all modes, such as the auto climate controls, speedometer, range, and a shortcut bar at the bottom featuring frequently used menus.

To enhance user convenience, you can save even more customizable frequently used commands into a “tool belt” accessible by swiping up from the bottom of the screen. Mini has also integrated the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, making the rectangular interface seamlessly blend into the round screen. The edges of the phone interface smoothly transition into a background that complements CarPlay or Android Auto, ensuring a professional and cohesive appearance. Additionally, the latest tech brings the introduction of the Mini Digital Key Plus, which operates similarly to BMW’s version. This feature allows you to use your phone as a key through ultra-wideband technology. Also, you can temporarily “share” your key with friends and family, granting them access to the car without needing the physical key.

For a sportier driving experience, Mini’s Go-Kart mode transforms the screen with a black and red theme, accompanied by a prominent speedometer. Moreover, Go-Kart mode brings unique sounds played over the speakers in the electric model, and it adjusts the throttle response for a more dynamic driving experience.

Furthermore, Mini has introduced a new “Personal Assistant” named Spike. This innovative feature allows you to interact with Spike, either referring to the dog or your Mini car, to accomplish various tasks. Like other personal assistants available today, Spike is capable of engaging in regular conversations when you ask questions like, “Do you like me” or “Tell me a joke”.

And for those choosing the electric version of the upcoming Mini, there’s an added benefit of a new navigation system featuring an augmented view with the help of a camera. This system projects guidance arrows on a video feed, enhancing navigation. Moreover, the system includes EV route planning, where once you input a route, it calculates charging stops and provides recommended charging times. The navigation system ensures that you reach the charging stops and your destination with at least 10% battery remaining.

As time progresses, Mini plans to update the system regularly, as the new software suite is designed to accept over-the-air upgrades. Although 5G connectivity and remote updates are no longer news, it is interesting that Mini has focused on the overall experience. Everything about this new Mini is coherent: the interface, the light projections, and the sound ambience inside and out. It’s a complete package that allows everyone to find their own style through personalization. Thanks to BMW OS 9, the days of fixed, uniform interfaces for many years in a car are over. The time has come to tailor the system to the preferences of each individual driver.


A propos de Mathilde Thioux

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