Currently reading: 2020 Mini JCW GP: 300bhp hot hatch priced from £33,895
Fastest-ever Mini is priced to match its BMW M135i stablemate, but will be built on a much smaller scale
Tom Morgan, deputy digital editor
News
3 mins read
4 November 2019

Mini has announced that its upcoming John Cooper Works GP hot hatch will be priced from £33,895, and that it will be revealed at the Los Angeles motor show later this month.

The brand has also revealed that a development prototype has set a Nürburgring lap time of less than eight minutes, suggesting it could be capable of beating the Renault Mégane RS Trophy-R's 7min 40.1sec lap time, set earlier this year. 

A camouflaged JCW GP prototype appeared at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in July, giving British Mini fans a first taste of the 302bhp hot hatch following its disguised public debut at the Nürburgring 24-hour race.

All the news from the Goodwood Festival of Speed 2019

Development cars wrapped in camouflage took to the 'Ring before the start of the famous endurance race to preview the brand's most powerful and fastest production model yet, which is due to go on sale in 2020. 

Mini used the event to confirm the car would see a limited production run, with just 3000 models produced worldwide - some 1000 cars more than either its immediate predecessor or the 2006 Mini Cooper S with John Cooper Works GP kit.

The British firm previously revealed that the hot hatchback will take its power from a four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, likely to be shared with the new BMW M135i hot hatch. 

The JCW GP will retain the extreme rear wing design, aggressive bodykit and bespoke wheels seen in the 2017 GP Concept. Preview images released by Mini showed a close-up of the rear diffuser, apparently previewing a design that's revised from the original concept, and four-spoke alloy wheels that aren’t as motorsport-inspired as the centre-locking 19in wheels used on the concept.

The four-cylinder turbocharged engine will make the GP the fastest and most powerful road-going Mini ever built by the company. No performance figures have been confirmed. 

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The 2017 concept’s large front and rear aprons are unlikely to be carried over in their entirety to the production model, although its LED rear lights that display half of the Union Jack in a nod to the car’s British origin have since become standard on the regular Mini hatchback.

The prominent use of lightweight materials including carbonfibre, which Mini said optimised the car’s power-to-weight ratio, may yet make it into the final car.

Inside, the concept had a roll-cage and pair of low-mounted bucket seats, with gearshifts controlled by paddles on the steering wheel. Mini has yet to reveal if the production version will follow suit.

The BMW-owned British brand said the concept is inspired by its triumphs at the Monte Carlo Rally in the 1960s, “embodying dynamic flair and the ultimate in driving fun”.

BMW board member Peter Schwarzenbauer previously told Autocar that a JCW GP model was likely to appear again. “The John Cooper Works GP is an important part of the Mini brand,” he said. “It has worked well for us in the past.”

Both the original and second-generation modern Minis offered a JCW GP model near the end of the mainstream models’ life cycle, in 2006 and 2012 respectively. The new JCW GP will arrive shortly before the predicted launch of the new Mini hatchback.

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The most recent JCW GP, launched in 2012, used a turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine delivering 215bhp, a 7bhp increase over the standard JCW at that time. It hit 0-62mph in 6.3sec and cost £28,790.

The current standard JCW adopted a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol unit with 227bhp and also hits 0-62mph in 6.3sec, so you can expect an increase in speed for the third-generation JCW GP.

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bomb 5 November 2019

It's the same engine and

It's the same engine and platform as the M135i. Same engine also used in the latest JCW Clubman/Countryman so no great leap to create a new GP version. It was never going to arrive before now to steal the thunder of the new 1 Series launch.

Endless references to the 'Ring are endlessly boring. I don't think it's for me.

Peter Cavellini 4 November 2019

What’s changed?

 We were talking about this car in March and it's still not here,and it's nothing special, 300bhp, that's just not enough to compete, maybe they should have done a limited edition with 400bhp and sold them for say £45K.....?

Citytiger 4 November 2019

Peter Cavellini wrote:

Peter Cavellini wrote:

 We were talking about this car in March and it's still not here,and it's nothing special, 300bhp, that's just not enough to compete, maybe they should have done a limited edition with 400bhp and sold them for say £45K.....?

If it was designed and built with a decent platform from the beginning, it wouldnt need 300bhp, the standard Fiesta ST makes do with 200, and its rated as one of the best drivers cars there is, as are the GT86/BRZ twins and the MX5 with similar outputs, the problem with the mini is its just to fat and heavy to be fun with limited power.. 

Peter Cavellini 4 November 2019

The Porsche method...?

Citytiger wrote:

Peter Cavellini wrote:

 We were talking about this car in March and it's still not here,and it's nothing special, 300bhp, that's just not enough to compete, maybe they should have done a limited edition with 400bhp and sold them for say £45K.....?

If it was designed and built with a decent platform from the beginning, it wouldnt need 300bhp, the standard Fiesta ST makes do with 200, and its rated as one of the best drivers cars there is, as are the GT86/BRZ twins and the MX5 with similar outputs, the problem with the mini is its just to fat and heavy to be fun with limited power.. 

Do a light weight version and charge more?.....just like Porsche do?

Luap 4 November 2019

Peter Cavellini wrote:

Peter Cavellini wrote:

 We were talking about this car in March and it's still not here,and it's nothing special, 300bhp, that's just not enough to compete, maybe they should have done a limited edition with 400bhp and sold them for say £45K.....?

400bhp and front wheel drive? No thanks.. 300bhp and fwd is bad enough.. And frankly, for that money, 4WD is justified.

Brian Fallon 4 November 2019

Mini Cooper JCW

It would have been crazy for Mini to offer a 300bhp version of the Countryman and not do so for their hot hatch. A 4wd version would be even better. Mini might be the only company  offering a 3 door hot hatch as everyone else only offers 5 doors. The performance figures for this car will need to be on par with the S3 and A35 to justify the price.

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