The current JCW has been a disappointment for MINI in terms of sales. They won’t ever say it but it’s clear that the car hasn’t performed up to expectations. But that’s not to say it doesn’t posses all the ingredients for success. We’ve written about it quite a bit on MF (you can read out review here) and even put together an official MotoringFile point of view around what the JCW should be. We’ve even thrown it out to readers in a poll awhile back.
It now looks like MINI has been listening. They know that the car needs one thing above all else; exclusivity. As it stands now the JCW looks on different from a bone stock Cooper S with the exception of a few very minor pieces of trim and a unique set of 17″ wheels. For 2011 MINI will be making an updated JCW aero-kit standard on the JCW in every market. That means installation of the kit will be done at the factory with all other assembly. But there is one massive update to the kit; a huge (functional) rear air diffuser that is lifted (mostly intact) from the JCW Challenge Race car (seen above).
We expect a unique exterior paint (potentially a roof color) option as well as a few unique trim choices as well. Also updated (across the entire MINI line) will be the interior center stack with a completely updated hard drive based Navigation system that will include MINI Connect.
Under the hood look for MINI’s addition of VALVETRONIC to filter into the JCW range and bump not only power (we expect a figure over 215 hp) but also efficiency. The stock MCS is up 8 hp and has 10% more efficiency.
The 2011 JCW will debut online with a public debut at the Paris autoshow. The car will start production around September 1st and reach dealers later that month. Any price increases should be in line with previous years.
You can see photos at Leftlanenews.