Mini will launch this high-performance John Cooper Works (JCW) version of the Mini Countryman at the Geneva motor show in March. A prototype Mini Countryman JCW, seen here in these official pictures for the first time, is currently undergoing final evaluation tests in wintery conditions in Austria.
Officially, Mini is remaining coy on exact technical specifications of the model ahead of its Geneva motor show reveal. But Autocar insiders have hinted that the JCW is in line for a significant power hike over the Mini Countryman Cooper S it is based on, with power from its turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol engine up from 177bhp to 215bhp.
There’s no word on an increase in torque or any hint at improved performance figures, but the power hike would suggest the Countryman JCW should be able to crack 0-62mph in around 7.0sec. The Cooper S’s official 0-62mph figure is 7.6sec.
The JCW will use sports suspension derived the Cooper S, insiders have confirmed. It will sit 10mm lower than the Cooper S with a ride height of 139mm. The diameter of the front anti-roll bar is up to 23mm and the rear is increased to 17mm.
The rear brakes are also in line for an upgrade, with 296mm in diameter rear discs used instead of the 280mm ones found on the Cooper S.
The prototype is still sporting a light disguise, but it is clear the Countryman JCW is to get similar muscular styling upgrades as seen on JCW versions of other models in the Mini line-up. These include a different grille and front bumper, flared wheel arches and a new rear bumper and pseudo diffuser with integrated dual exhausts.