- The Mini John Cooper Works GP will be the top high-performance vehicle in the Mini lineup.
- Based on the Cooper Hardtop but with all sorts of modifications, the GP is being partially revealed in prototype form ahead of its official debut.
- The JCW GP will go on sale in 2020, with 3000 units set to be produced in total.
Mini is effectively laying all its cards on the table with new information about the top dog in its performance lineup, the John Cooper Works GP. We already knew that this hard-core hot hatch would have 300 horsepower from a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four and that it would have a giant rear wing like the concept that previewed it. And we are now seeing the first photos of the production car, albeit in prototype form with a bit of camouflage, running on the Nürburgring racetrack in Germany.
According to Mini, the new car can lap the circuit in under eight minutes, which could put it into contention with the current front-wheel-drive lap record holder, the Renault Mégane R.S. Trophy-R that did the deed in 7:40.1 (it took the crown from the Honda Civic Type R that previously held the record, at 7:43.8).
The GP definitely looks the part, with an aggressive body kit featuring flared fenders, plenty of extra vents and scoops, a front splitter and rear diffuser, and the aforementioned giant wing on the back. Larger brakes and upgraded wheels and tires are surely part of the package too, although we don't have full specs on the GP's chassis upgrades. It will likely have a stripped-out interior with the rear seats removed to save weight.
Mini hasn't said exactly when it will reveal the GP in full but does say that the car is going on sale in 2020. A total of 3000 units will be produced. It succeeds previous hard-core Mini GP models, a tradition that kicked off with the Mini Cooper S with a GP kit from 2006.
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