What is it?
The fastest, most powerful and, by some margin, most expensive model in the newly facelifted Mini Paceman line-up – the John Cooper Works Pacemen All4.
Planned to go on sale in the UK alongside other more affordable facelifted Countryman and Paceman models this month, the £29,440 John Cooper Works Paceman aims to provide competition to a growing number of performance-orientated crossover-style vehicles. Included among its rivals are the Audi Q3 2.0 TFSI and recently introduced Mercedes-Benz GLA250 Sport.
As we said when it was unveiled at the Beijing motor show back in April, there is precious little to differentiate this facelifted model from the original John Cooper Works Paceman.
Among the subtle visual changes is a lightly altered grille that now includes a red horizontal rib, and newly styled 18-inch alloy wheels. Buyers can also opt for an optional LED function for the daytime running lights and foglights, but that is about the extent of what really is a very minor mid-life makeover for the extravagantly styled three-door.
Earlier suggestions that the facelifted Paceman would adopt the same much-improved interior as the latest hatchback have proven unfounded. Somewhat disappointingly, it retains the same retro-inspired interior as before, albeit with added sound deadening material aimed at reducing road noise.
As with its styling, the reworked JCW Paceman All4 retains a largely unaltered mechanical package. Mounted transversely in the blunt nose is Mini’s familiar turbocharged 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine. It produces the same 215bhp and nominal 206lb ft as before, giving it 28bhp and 29lb ft more than the Cooper S Paceman All4, which uses the same engine in a milder state of tune.
Drive is channelled through either a standard six-speed manual or optional six-speed automatic gearbox via a multi-plate clutch four-wheel drive system which can send up to 100 per cent of the drive to either the front or rear wheels to enhance traction. There is also a standard electronic differential lock to ensure those reserves are placed to the road with minimal fuss.