The new MINI JCW is here! Revealed online ahead of its global showing in Detroit next month, the next-gen JCW is a pretty stout upgrade over an already-intense predecessor. Power is up 10-percent to 228-horsepower, while torque is up 14-percent to 236-pound-feet from an all-new turbo four.
The big news with this engine is its giant jump in displacement: up 25-percent over the previous engine. That means the power is easier to achieve without huge throttle needed. Good on the track, but even better for real-world road power and responsiveness. The six-speed manual sprints to 60-mph now in 6.1-seconds, and the new six-speed paddle-shifted auto is even quicker at just 5.9-seconds to 60-mph. That is quick! More than half a second quicker than the Fiesta ST and even the Golf GTI, while over a second faster than the Honda Civic Si.
We are pleased to see the latest MINI JCW Hardtop wearing standard LED headlights, along with standard LED DRL rings for the nose. It is a cool look on the road, and very striking on grey days or near sunset.
The cabin of the new JCW is decked out in sporty hardware like racing seats and sporty trims and fabrics. The overall design is far more timeless, but still has dozens of unique combinations of equipment from which to personalize your cabin to match the outside.
We expect the new JCW to also integrate the latest BMW group GoPro and laptimer tech — where it will feel right at home screeching around tracks on the weekends.
No word on prices yet. But ballpark $30,000 as the opening price, with arrivals likely by May of 2015 as a 2016 model-year.
A last tidbit? The official name of this new MINI is the JVW Hardtop. This makes us think there might be a JCW Convertible for the next generation? We are fairly certain that the JCW was hardtop-only before this generation, but could be mistaken.
2016 MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop
Pure driving fun, more extreme than ever: the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop
The new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop will make its World Premiere at the North American International Auto Show in January
Woodcliff Lake, NJ – December 10, 2014…MINI has carried a passion for motorsport for 55 years and this is more evident than ever before with the launch of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop. The exceptional performance of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is a result of the most powerful engine ever installed in one of the brand’s production models, suspension technology refined with racing expertise and model-specific design features which not only optimize the car’s aerodynamic features but also underscore its exclusive charisma. With its irresistible temperament and high performance capabilities, it not only outperforms the sportiest variants of the new MINI but also the predecessor John Cooper Works variants.
The power for the new John Cooper Works Hardtop is delivered by a 2.0- liter 4-cylinder engine that was developed based on the latest generation of power units with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology. It generates a maximum output of 228 bhp and a maximum torque of 236 ft-lbs., accelerating from 0 to 60 mph in 5.9 econds (Manual: 6.1 seconds). This is an increase in sprint capability of 0.3 seconds or 5 percent as compared to the previous generation John Cooper Works Hardtop. Elasticity has even been improved by 10 percent. With a figure of 5.6 seconds for acceleration from 50 to 75 mph, the new MINI John Cooper Works even leaves top-class sports cars in its dust.
Technology for the engine, suspension, body and interior have been derived directly from motor racing and define the exclusive, performance-oriented character of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop. Combined with the further refined product substance of the new MINI, the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop has been created for fans who appreciate authentic race feeling, premium quality and a high level of everyday practicality. The extremely powerful engine, sports exhaust system and sports suspension with exclusive 17-inch John Cooper Works light alloy wheels combine for a high performance motoring experience that MINI owners expect from the John Cooper Works variants. A sports brake system developed in collaboration with specialist manufacturer Brembo, as well as the John Cooper Works aerodynamics kit including a model-specific rear spoiler and newly developed John Cooper Works sports seats comprising integrated headrest all go together to complete a precisely harmonized overall package.
This gives the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop performance qualities including not just high-speed acceleration capacity but also exceptional agility, a high degree of steering precision and precise handling on the road as well as excellent deceleration figures. This set of characteristics reflects the brand’s rich motor racing experience and bears witness to the tradition-steeped link between MINI and John Cooper Works. Ever since legendary designer John Cooper discovered the racing talent the classic Mini presented in the early 1960’s, his name has stood for maximum driving fun and success on the race track with the small British car.
The engine: state-of-the-art basis optimized with racing expertise for top performance.
Under the bonnet of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is by far the sportiest version of the latest MINI engine generation. The 4-cylinder engine traditionally mounted transversely at the front benefits from advancements in the areas of power delivery, smoothness and efficiency derived from MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology, combining these with performance characteristics which are unmistakably geared towards motor racing. It draws its power from a capacity of 2.0 liters – an increase of 25 percent over the engine in the predecessor model. The increase in output amounts to 10 percent, while the maximum torque is 14 percent higher than before.
The new engine was created on the basis of the 4-cylinder that was completely newly developed for the latest generation of the MINI Cooper S. It has turbocharging integrated in the exhaust manifold, direct injection with injectors arranged centrally between the valves, fully variable valve control in the form of VALVETRONIC as patented by the BMW Group and variable camshaft control on the intake and exhaust side (double VANOS). As a result, the engine of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop guarantees efficient and reliable driving fun in day-to-day use as well as sporty power delivery for inspirational performance on the race track.
The turbocharging system integrated in the cast steel manifold makes for short ducting of the exhaust gas flow, thereby enabling an early and powerful response. What is more, the turbocharger developed specially for the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is made of temperature-resilient material. It generates increased charge-air pressure for even, sporty power delivery across a wide engine speed range. The specific pistons are precisely harmonized with this, enabling compression reduction that is adapted to the high level of charge-air pressure. This design produces performance characteristics typical of a sports car: power delivery which sets in early on and is maintained continuously right through to a high load range. The engine of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop responds spontaneously to the smallest movements of the accelerator pedal. It develops its maximum torque of 236 ft-lbs. at just 1, 250 rpm and puts this on stream over a range going up to 4, 800 rpm. At 5, 200 rpm the engine supplies its peak output of 228 bhp which is then maintained at a constant level up to 6, 000 rpm.
The output bonus in the new John Cooper Works Hardtop is now higher than before with 39 percent more horsepower than the MINI Cooper S and is also exceptional in terms of its pulling power. Its thrust not only enables extremely spirited acceleration from standing but also highly dynamic interim sprints. The new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop completes the standard sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds (Manual: 6.1 seconds), it takes just 5.6 seconds to accelerate from 50 to 75 mph and its maximum speed 153 mph.
Geared towards top performance in every way, the engine technology in the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is rounded off with a specific sports exhaust system. With its low level of exhaust back pressure it promotes spontaneous power delivery in the engine as well as generating the sound typical of the John Cooper Works models that underscores the engine’s performance character with a highly emotional acoustic pattern across all load ranges.
Top performance delivered in dynamic style: 6-speed manual transmission with engine speed adaptation, 6-speed Steptronic sports transmission with shift paddles at the steering wheel.
Power delivery to the front wheels is affected as standard via a 6-speed manual transmission which has been adapted in detail to the engine’s performance characteristics. The transmission itself, also newly developed for the latest model generation, is characterized by low weight, short shift travel and optimized acoustic and vibrational characteristics, as well as providing an innovation which comes into play impressively when the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is driven in sporty style. A gear sensor allows active engine speed adaptation, or rev-matching. When changing gear, the engine speed can be automatically adapted to the rotational speed of the input shaft for the gear selected. This ensures jerk-free clutch engagement, thereby enhancing comfort when shifting down a gear.
A 6-speed Steptronic sports transmission is also optionally available for the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop. This automatic transmission combines high efficiency and a high level of shift comfort with increased shift dynamics and fast gear shifts. In manual mode, it is possible to change gear using shift paddles at the steering wheel. In combination with the automatic transmission, the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop also features the automatic engine start/stop function, preventing unnecessary fuel consumption caused by idling at junctions or in congested traffic.
Efficiency-optimized drive systems thanks to MINIMALISM technology.
The MINIMALISM technology also extensively applied in the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop comprises not just efficiency-optimized drive systems and the automatic engine start/stop function but also shift point display, brake energy regeneration, needs-based control of the fuel pump, coolant pump and other ancillary units, electromechanical power steering and a map-controlled oil pump. In addition, intelligent lightweight construction and optimized aerodynamic properties help ensure significantly increased driving fun.
For precisely controllable go-kart feeling: high-end suspension technology, Brembo brake system, exclusive light alloy wheels.
Together with the hallmark brand concept comprising front-wheel drive, a low center of gravity, short overhangs, wide track and rigid body structure, the suspension technology has undergone extensive further development for the latest generation of the MINI so as to provide the perfect basis for thrilling race feeling. The new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is fitted as standard with a sports suspension and benefits from the well-established design principle of a single-joint spring strut axle at front and a multilink rear axle which is unique within the competitive environment, as well as optimized details geared towards high engine and driving performance figures. A standard suspension is also available as a no-cost option.
In order to reduce weight and increase component rigidity, the front axle is fitted with aluminum swivel bearings as well as axle supports and wishbones made of high-strength steel. The model-specific axle kinematics supports an agile turn-in response as well as a precise steering sensation largely free of drive torque. At the rear axle, too, a larger proportion of highly rigid steel types ensure increased stiffness combined with reduced weight. Tube-shaped stabilizers at the front and rear axle, an innovative axle bearing including a hydraulically damped engine mount and triple- path support bearings to decouple the dampers from the body additionally contribute to the fact that the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop retains precise handling as well as optimized ride comfort even in highly sporty situations.
Another standard feature of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is the high-performance sports brake system developed exclusively for this model. Designed in collaboration with the specialized manufacturer Brembo and precisely harmonized with the properties of the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop, the fixed caliper disc brakes guarantee a high deceleration performance even when exposed to intensive stress on the race track. The brake calipers are finished in red and bear the manufacturer’s logo. The standard 17-inch John Cooper Works light alloy wheels in Race Spoke design were created exclusively for the John Cooper Works Hardtop, and there are three more wheel design options including 17-inch Joh Cooper Works Track Spoke light alloy wheels in silver or black and 18-inch John Cooper Works Cup Spoke light alloy wheels with two-tone finish.
The standard Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) also comprises the functions Dynamic Traction Control (DTC), Electronic Differential Lock Control (EDLC) – which acts as an electronic locking function for the front axle differential – and Performance Control, which supports agile turning when taking bends at speed. Self-steering tendencies that can be caused by differing torque levels on the drive wheels are also prevented by means of the so-called Torque Steer Compensation function provided by the electromechanical power steering. Standard features also include the speed-related steering assistance system Servotronic. Dynamic Damper Control is optionally available for the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop. It allows selection of two set-ups for either particularly sporty or more comfort-oriented driving situations.
The passive safety of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop is also enhanced by the extremely rigid passenger cell, highly resilient bracket structures and deformation zones in optimum design. These form part of the integrated MINI safety concept, as do the standard eight airbags, 3-point automatic belts on all seats and ISOFIX children’s seat attachments at the rear.
Exterior design: precise cooling air and wind ducting.
The body design of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop underscores the performance-oriented yet exclusive character of the top athlete in the small car segment. The front section has large air inlets which indicate the high cooling requirements of the engine, its ancillary units and the brakes and thereby instantly revealing the car’s outstanding performance qualities. The model-specific cooling concept of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop also comprises additional air inlets in the outer areas of the front apron so as to ensure the ideal operating temperature is maintained even in race track conditions. These take up the space provided in the new MINI for fog lamps and guarantee an air supply to additional external cooling units that regulate the temperature level of the ancillary units and brakes.
The hexagonal radiator grill at the center of the front section has a characteristic honeycomb pattern and a cross member at the bottom edge finished in red. The John Cooper Works logo also appears here, as well as on the luggage compartment lid at the rear of the car. The likewise standard LED headlamps are surrounded by a daytime driving light ring also in LED technology, the lower section of which is white and acts as the direction indicator.
Precisely shaped air ducting elements in the lower section of the front apron help optimize the car’s aerodynamic properties as do the side sills in model-specific design. All the other body elements relevant to airflow were subjected to intense testing in race track conditions in order to precisely harmonize them with the driving dynamics potential of the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop and thereby ensure precise and safe handling at all times. This explains the distinctive shape of the rear spoiler fitted on the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop, applied to generate down thrust at high speeds. The rear apron with flaps and a diffuser element in the lower area likewise helps optimize aerodynamic balance.
Other exclusive features of the exterior include the side turn indicator surrounds known as side scuttles, which bear a red accentuation line and a John Cooper Works logo applied to a black background, and also the tailpipes of the sports exhaust system integrated centrally in the rear apron and identifiable by their large cross-section. The black wheel arch surrounds also exhibit model-specific contours. Eleven paint finishes are available to choose from for the body. The range also includes the MINI Yours paint finish Lapisluxury Blue metallic and the new variant Rebel Green metallic – the latter being available exclusively for the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop. As an option at no extra cost, the roof and exterior mirror caps can be finished in white, black or – also exclusively for the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop – Chili Red. The exclusive John Cooper Works black bonnets stripes with Chili Red lines are also an option that is reserved solely for the new top athlete.
Interior: sports car cockpit with new John Cooper Works sports seats for authentic race feeling.
Due to the increased dimensions as compared to the predecessor model, the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop offers optimized space on the four seats. The luggage compartment now has a capacity of 34 cubic feet when the rear seats are folded. The additional functions and the new display and operating concept are combined with specific design features in the style of John Cooper Works, thereby enhancing the intense performance experience this car offers.
Optimum lateral hold in highly dynamic driving situations is ensured by the newly developed John Cooper Works sports seats with integrated headrests and model-specific upholstery in Dinamica/fabric and the color Carbon Black. The new seats are also optionally available in a Dinamica/Carbon Black leather version. The exclusive standard fittings also include the newly designed John Cooper Works leather steering wheel with multifunction buttons and the John Cooper Works entry sills, the John Cooper Works gear or selector lever, stainless steel pedals including driver footrest and anthracite roof liner.
Interior trim in Piano Black and red design accentuations not just on the seat surfaces but also on the steering wheel rim, the gear or selector lever and the car key all contribute to underscoring the car’s exclusive charisma. What is more, the new MINI John Cooper Works has model-specific cockpit displays in a style that is presented here for the first time. A dark dial for the speedometer and engine speed display optimize readability of the instruments arranged above the steering wheel.
The standard fittings of the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop also include the MINI Driving Modes, which allow configuration of an individual set-up. Using a rotary switch at the base of the gear or selector lever, the driver can select not just the standard setting MID Mode but also the SPORT Mode and the GREEN Mode so as to activate a set-up that emphasizes sporty driving, a balanced, comfortable style or increased efficiency. The MINI Driving Modes are used to influence the characteristic curves of the accelerator, steering and engine acoustics. Where the car is fitted with the relevant equipment features, the selected set-up also affects the shifting characteristics of the automatic transmission, the Dynamic Damper Control program map, the ambient lighting and the displays in the central instrument.
Innovative driver assistance systems: MINI Head-Up Display with model-specific display content.
The racing feel in the cockpit of the MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop can be further enhanced with optional sports instruments Cockpit Chrono package. The three displays designed in classic circular form provide information that is especially relevant when an ambitiously sporty style of driving is adopted. The sports instruments consist of displays for the oil and turbo boost pressure as well as a chronometer with stopwatch function.
What is more, the full extended range of driver assistance systems is also available for the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop. This comprises the Active Driving Assistant including camera-based active cruise control, collision and pedestrian warning with initial brake function, high beam assistant, and road sign detection, as well as Park Assistant Package, Park Distance Control, and rear-view camera. Meanwhile the likewise optional MINI Head-Up Display which extends above the steering column offers an augmented range of functions specific to this model. In addition to information on road speed, speed limits detected, current navigation directions and Check Control messages, feedback from the driver assistance systems and lists of telephone contacts and entertainment programs, it is also possible to display the currently selected gear and a multi-colored engine speed scale which is supplemented with a shift point signal depending on the driving mode selected, so as to enable for dynamic acceleration maneuvers.
High-end special equipment features for greater driving fun, comfort, premium flair and individual style.
Due to its model-specific design and fittings, the new MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop already comes off the production line as a perfectly harmonized package offering extreme driving fun in the premium small car segment. With the characteristic MINI diversity in terms of the range of special equipment features and accessories, the top athlete additionally offers extensive options for customization geared precisely towards the driver’s own personal style. Dual-zone automatic climate control is included as standard equipment, as are automatic headlights, and rain-sensing automatic windshield wipers. Other available options include seat heating for driver and front passenger, a panorama glass roof, ambient lighting with continuously variable coloring, electrically heated and folding exterior mirrors and auto-dimming interior and exterior mirrors. For customization of the exterior and interior, options also include various graphics for the roof and exterior mirrors, bonnet stripes, seat upholsteries, interior surfaces and Color Lines.
The Radio MINI Boost including AUX-IN socket and USB interface are likewise standard features of the new MINI John Cooper Works. These can be supplemented with such items as the optional Harman/Kardon hi-fi speaker system. The option MINI Connected or MINI Connected XL is also available in conjunction with the Radio MINI Visual Boost and the MINI navigation system. It offers extensive integration of smartphones in the car, allowing the use of internet-based services in the areas of infotainment, communication and driver experience.
Numerous functions which can be integrated in the vehicle via apps in the areas of social media and infotainment are available for both the Apple iPhone and for select smartphones using the Android operating system. Operation is intuitive and reflects hallmark brand style in using the MINI Controller in the center console and a color display in the central instrument. MINI Wired Package includes an 8.8-inch screen and the MINI Touch Controller with touch-sensitive surface.
About MINI in the US
MINI is an independent brand of the BMW Group. In the United States, MINI USA operates as a business unit of BMW of North America, LLC, located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey and includes the marketing and sales organizations for the MINI brand. The MINI USA sales organization is represented in the U.S. through a network of 122 MINI passenger car dealers in 39 states. MINI USA began selling vehicles in the U.S. in 2002 with the introduction of the MINI Cooper and MINI Cooper S Hardtops. Since then, the MINI Brand in the U.S. has grown to encompass a model range of seven unique vehicles.
Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly-expanding automotive news magazine.
He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank.
Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.