A new range-topping, special edition Mini has been released at the Los Angeles Auto Show 2019, the Mini John Cooper Works GP. The GP has been teased for a long time with teaser runs up the Goodwood hill climb earlier this year and plenty of leaks.

The Mini John Cooper Works GP is the most extreme production Mini to date. It is set to give bigger hot hatches a run for their money!

Design

The Mini Cooper receives a variety of modifications to its design. The most noticeable is the wheel arch trim. Made from carbon fibre-reinforced plastic, it is the first time BMW has used this material. It is made using material recycled form he BMW i8 and BMW i3 production, making it highly efficient. It flares the wheel arch in a new and distinctive way.

Other changes include a new set of wheels and black painted trim pieces. At the rear is a massive rear spoiler, the biggest we’ve ever seen on a production Mini. The rear gets a redesigned rear diffuser and a smaller set of air outlets.

Powertrain

Under the bonnet sits a 2.0 litre, twin-turbocharged, 4-cylinder engine. Power is pushed up by 75 hp to 306 hp and 450 Nm of torque. It sits on a new engine mount with new tunnel bridges.

The power is achieved through a variety of changes. The turbocharger is also new. Fitted to the exhaust manifold, a divert-air valve helps it achieve better response times. The compression ratio is lower by 0.7, but the system has increased boost pressure. The intake air duct is all-new with enlarged inlet and flow cross-sections.

The injection system is revamped too. New multi-hole injectors are arranged centrally and push at increased flow rates with an injection pressure of up to 350 bar. The final modification is an all-new engine oil sump. The modifications to the engine mean that the Mini should be more responsive.

The reinforced crankshaft uses an enlarged main bearing diameter, specific pistons, bushless connecting rods and a torsional vibration damper with enhanced cooling.

The John Cooper GP Works hits 100 km/h in 5.2 seconds and a top speed of 265 km/h (with no limiter). Naturally, Mini have installed a new exhaust system with a fuller, more sonorous sound. The system is unique to the GP Works and with a straight pipe, large rear silencer and two 90 mm brushed aluminium stainless steel tailpipes.

Power is routed to the front wheels through an 8 speed Steptronic transmission as standard with an integrated differential lock. The mechanical differential distributes traction between the right and left wheels. It locks up to 31 per cent under load and the helps counteract any loss of traction.

Suspension

Changes have also been made to the suspension setup. The single-joint spring front suspension and rear multilink axle receive a completely new tune. The track width is wider and the body is lowered by 10 millimetres.

New swivel bearings are installed which increaser front wheel and rear wheel camber. Rigidity is enhanced through a stiffer rubber support bearings.

A special GP mode in the DSC settings allows increased stability intervention through the brakes to improve agility. Talking about brakes, those are completely new too. At the front, you have 4-piston units with a floating-calliper. At the rear, a single-piston, both made of aluminium. They are hidden by a set of 18 inch forged wheels.

Availability

The Mini John Cooper Works GP gets its debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show 2019 this week.

It will be replicated 3,000 times with production set to get underway in March 2020. Pricing has been announced at 45,000 euros in Germany, £33,895 in the UK and $44,900 in the US.

Competition

Renault Megane R.S. Trophy R

The hot hatch market isn’t as buoyant as it has been in the past, yet the Mini Cooper GP Works has no shortage of competition.

The Renault Mégane RS Trophy is clearly Mini’s immediate benchmark. The British marque is keen to lap the Cooper GP Works around the Nurburgring faster than Renault’s 7 minutes 40.1 seconds earlier this year.

At this price tag, the Honda Civic Type R, Volkswagen Golf R and Ford Focus ST. Of course, all three are considerably larger than the dominative Mini Cooper.

Gallery


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