Late last year, BMW revealed plans to produce a Mini electric van called the Urbanaut at the #NEXTGen event, alongside a promise to make Mini an electric-only brand by 2030. This week, the automaker has confirmed the development of the new, all electric MPV. An initial, physical prototype was also revealed earlier this year, which featured a fold-out windshield and an interior that rivals that of a classic VW Microbus.
The press release announcing the automaker’s future plans detailed the all-electric Vision Urbanaut, with an emphasis on the use of sustainable materials (using cork and knitted textile throughout the interior). The automaker describes the new van as a vision of space – “Built with sustainability and flexibility in mind, its adaptive concept makes sure that you will always get the best out of the city and your surroundings.”
This news comes alongside the reveal of the Volkswagen ID.Buzz microbus prototype, which is due for commercial delivery in the United States starting in 2023. The Urbanaut is expected to be a rival to VW’s electric bus, as well as Canoo’s Lifestyle Vehicle, which is slated to roll out next year.
BMW has not yet confirmed when the Urbanaut will begin production or commercial delivery.