I guess the beginning, or the end, is a good place to start…

We have his and hers electric cars, his… a Tesla Roadster, hers… a MINI E, everyone’s happy.  Until…

Saturday 21st January 2012 and it’s the day we are due to pick up the ActiveE and return the MINI E, oh no do we really have to?  I really want to keep the MINI E it’s great fun to drive and just… so much fun!  But I’m told no it has to go back and I’ll really like the ActiveE… hmm why am I not convinced?

We set off for the BMW garage to pick up the ActiveE and return the MINI E, it’s a sad drive, we’ve had a brilliant 2 years, 1 month and 5 days with the MINI E, how can the ActiveE possibly live up to it?  We arrive at the BMW garage with 33,333.3 miles on the MINI E, that’s pretty cool.  We park up and walk away from the MINI E feeling quite glum.

Inside the BMW garage we are taken to see the ActiveE; it’s white… not a good colour.

— A quick aside about colour —

You’ve all overheard those conversations “What kind of car do you have?” “Oh, a white one.” Well, that just goes to show that above style, brand, horsepower and whatnot, colour trumps all other ways of ‘rating’ a car. Colour is what we use to group car owners – when did you ever see a rock star in a tan Toyota or a powder blue Ford? For me, colour is what people see first and for me, the last thing that I want friends, family and others to see… is white!

— back to the story —

We are shown around it and I take a little interest but not much as I all I can think about is the poor MINI E sitting outside in the snow.  After all the paperwork was taken care of, we were given a talk by Mike the sales guy. It’s his first ever EV and he confesses that we might know more about it than him but asks us to bear with him, so we dutifully listen and fake interest (sorry Mike – that’s our MINI E outside). When we’re all finished, hands shaken and photos snapped we leave the garage in the ActiveE.  So okay, it’s very quiet and comfortable, BMW have done a nice job of the interior and it looks to have lots of features, but it is still white and not the MINI E!

We drive home in the snow, not the best of weather to pick up a new car and certainly not a white one. It’s very dirty by the time we get home, so it needs it’s first wash already!

If you want to read more about life with the MINI E; you can read my article in Green Car Reports.

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