I think that it is clear that few, if any, "back into" buying an SE model. I think most have calculated their daily drives and know if 100 mile range works or not. Where I live, I can easily drive to San Antonio or Austin and come back home without any range anxiety. That said if this thing could go 140-150 miles it would be PERFECT. And then once the range is settled with the buyer- then two things happen after that - 1> The superb handling that beats the vaunted GTI ( I have had 4 and currently Drive an R) and 2> The sheer BMW quality of the interior, aluminum switches, great seats (leather ones at least). And with the lowish price- you have a Mini cult favorite. I have read reviews where electrifying a motor based Mini into an electric one has been sneared at a bit, but I dont see the problem. Great size inside, chassis seems very lively and competent and did I say the zippy, direct, nicely weighted steering and PERFECT meat sterring wheel that fits the personality of the car. The only thing is I think the HK stereo upgrade is OK but should be better- BMW always cheaps out a bit oin the Music kit. And yes all cars should have blind spot monitoring period. I35 in Texas is like a crowded F1 track. Oh and the head up display? Nah- I disabled it. Still in the Honeymoon phase but dam I really love thing.
I've had my 23 since 6/22 and think several of us have come to your same conclusions.
Living in metropolitan Tucson where it's 35 min to even get to I10, I can be anywhere within City limits and many places in Pima County free of range anxiety. It would be nice to be able to drive to the Dealer in Phoenix but at 108 miles (and a gazillion degrees outside 6-7 months of the year), it's into my anxiety range. Since we don't have a local MINI dealer, MINI will pick it up and bring it back on a truck for service or warranty. Fine.
I sold my 17 Golf R DCT to get into the MINI and never looked back. On paper, the R is faster but the SE is "real-world faster" and solid on the road due to it's weight. The thing you didn't mention was the Golf R's AWD - a STELLLAR performer in the mountains, rain, and, yes, even light snow. The MINI has reminded me of a word I hadn't used in quite a while - TORQUE STEER. You better have all hands on deck (the steering wheel) at high acceleration from a standing start or you'll be visiting your neighbor's lane in a blink of the eye! But once you get used to it (kind of like regenerative braking/single pedal driving) it's easily handled and reminds me I'm driving the beast it can be.
Ditto on the interior. I've had numerous BMWs, Porsches & Audis over the years and they have set the bar by which I judge all other make/models in terms of engineering, interior ergonomics and fit/finish. BMW attempts to carry forth the quirky traditions that make a MINI a MINI but IMO, this sacrifices a lot in terms of ergonomics and functionality, Still, it's a very comfortable interior, even if its only for 100 miles. And the leather seats ARE some of the best I've been in but I'd gladly accept 10 more pounds for some electrification & memory (guess if I LOST 10 more pounds, I could work the manual seats better? 😮). Rover made the original MINI bigger and "better." BMW did the same thing. That said, the current generation has strayed FAR from the original MINI's mission. Trying to be all things for all people comes at a cost to others.
I too have enjoyed Bose, other and the JBL system in the R. The HK is fine for my needs. What I really enjoy is wireless CarPlay. It automatically starts with my driver profile and picks up where I left off.
The Driver Assistance features appear to work well and the "traffic jam" ACC cruise" will come to complete stop - nd take off again without resetting the cruise. Simply awesome. +1 on the BSM. I haven't even tried the Auto Park feature yet. Heads Up Display? Naaa, I disabled it too. This isn't a F-22 Raptor that shoots down Chinese Balloons 🛩...🚀...🎈...☠
In summary, the most EV and fun you gan get for the least about of $. And I just finish my 2022 taxes with a $7500 tax credit so it's a WIN for me!