In 1984 Minolta presented its fully automatic compact camera Minolta AF-E. In Minolta's 1984 line-up (consisting of the AF-C, AF-S and AF-Sv), it was the "people's camera", with easy loading, automatic flash and a less advanced 1:3.5 f=35mm lens, focused by an active infrared autofocus system. It used DX-coded 35mm film with speeds ISO 100 to 1000. It had automatic exposure and automatic motorized film transport with a mechanical automatic frame counter. The built-in flash was activated automatically in low-light situations by the photo-diode-controlled exposure system. The camera had a reverse Galilean bright frame viewfinder.
Though looking dated now, the AF-E received Japan's "Good Design Award". A limited edition in silver with black accents was also released.
Besides the normal black and the limited edition there are 3 known designs by André Courrèges, a french fashion designer who had also designed 5 versions of the Minolta Disc cameras. These are a pink, a blue and a silver variant, all three models are known to be very rare. Quartz-date models of all versions were also available, these have a date imprinting function.
Maginon offered a TW35 accessory optics set for this model, including an auxiliary wide-angle and telephoto adapter. The modules included add-on optics for lens, viewfinder and autofocus.