As a light and compact single-track vehicle in the style of a kick scooter with an auxiliary electric drive, the concept study shows attractive ways in which its users can get directly to their final destination without having to consider traffic congestion, the shortage of parking space and the timetable intervals of local public transportation.
With a maximum speed of up to 25 km/h (15 mph) and an electric range of some 15 to 25 kilometres (10 – 15 miles), the MINI Citysurfer Concept is ideally suited for day-to-day use over short distances. The full range of the concept vehicle’s strengths especially come into their own when it is used as a spontaneously available supplement to an automobile or local public transport. Thanks to its low weight of some 18 kilograms (40 lbs) and a folding concept, it fits easily into the luggage compartment of the new MINI 3 door, for example. In a few swift moves it is ready to take the user from a car park on the outskirts of the town to their final destination in the city centre – the so-called ‘last mile’. Its compact dimensions allow the MINI Citysurfer Concept to be taken along on a bus or train, thereby expanding flexibility in urban traffic.
The symptoms of increasing urbanisation include a shortage of traffic and parking space in the very sections of large conurbation areas which frequently attract particularly large numbers of people. The concentration of work, leisure and shopping facilities in a few areas results in increased mobility within a limited space. Some of the practical effects of this development include traffic congestion and a shortage of parking space – phenomena which not only impair the quality of living in the areas concerned but also generate unnecessary emissions, accident risks and economically significant time wastage. In view of this, novel vehicle concepts are becoming increasingly attractive. The MINI Citysurfer Concept is tailored specifically to the kind of mobility situation in which individual travel by automobile or local public transport reaches its limitations.
With its compact dimensions, the MINI Citysurfer Concept only takes up minimum traffic space. It allows convenient mobility even in those parts of a city centre where automobiles are not permitted access.
It can also be easily combined with other means of transport. When packed into the luggage compartment of an automobile, the MINI Citysurfer Concept is available for the user to switch over to at any time. It can also be taken along in many types of public transportation and used for the last stage of a journey to get to your final destination after arriving at a bus or rail station.
Its compact dimensions make the MINI Citysurfer Concept smaller than a folding bicycle. While the latter is powered by physical strength alone, the MINI Citysurfer Concept also has an electric drive which adds additional comfort features to urban mobility, enhancing the travel experience with a sense of innovation and fun. A brushless hub motor integrated in the rear wheel provides effective support for the rider, accelerating the MINI Citysurfer Concept to speeds of up to 25 km/h (15 mph).
The electric motor is powered by a high-performance lithium-ion battery contained in a rain and splash proof housing and integrated permanently in the frame under the foot board. This unit also includes a battery management system with integrated power electronics which controls energy feed and consumption based on both efficiency and cell durability. The lithium-ion battery provides sufficient power to allow the MINI Citysurfer Concept to achieve an electric range of 15 to 25 kilometres (15 miles). When the battery is completely discharged, the electric motor is automatically switched off and disconnected from the free-wheel hub in the rear wheel. The rider can then continue to travel by foot power and without being limited by the rolling resistance of the motor.
Battery charging is also highly flexible. A special cable with the relevant plug connections allows it to be charged at a conventional household socket while a supplementary cable is provided for the 12-volt power supply in an automobile. What is more, the MINI Citysurfer Concept is able to recharge its battery during travel by means of brake energy recuperation. The electric motor acts as a generator during braking phases for this purpose. In everyday use, most deceleration required by situations on the road can be carried out entirely by means of recuperative braking.
The MINI Citysurfer Concept was developed for spontaneous riding fun in urban traffic and responds to the needs of various target groups in a range of different everyday situations. The innovative vehicle concept is not only geared towards fun use for individual leisure activities but is also particularly suitable as a supplementary means of transportation combined with an automobile or public transportation, as well as for commuters travelling to work and back and for other work-related mobility requirements. Generous trim elements and wheel covers provide effective protection from dirt and splash water, so use of the MINI Citysurfer Concept does not make special demands in terms of the rider’s clothing when travelling in wet weather, for example.
The flexible smartphone holder on the handlebars likewise enhances comfort and functionality in everyday urban life. This enables the use of a mobile phone for navigation purposes as required. A user can thus navigate precisely and conveniently to cover the so-called last mile to their final destination. This provides the ideal basis for the rider to benefit from the Last Mile navigation function offered by the MINI Connected XL Journey Mate. A charging socket integrated in the holder also means that the smartphone can be powered by the MINI Citysurfer Concept’s lithium-ion battery during travel.[wzslider height=”400″ lightbox=”true”]