Next MINI JCW GP Spotted in Motion

Our prediction two weeks ago that we’d be seeing a R56 based GP very soon appears to be coming true. Today we see that car in full motion (video after the break) spotted on the German Autobahn. The tell-tale wing and the predicted functional rear diffuser are all here giving us the required tip-offs that this is indeed the new GP.

Video and details after the break.

The Details (as we know them)

Our sources at MINI have been rather tight-lipped about the specifics of the car, but here’s what we do know. Despite the Coupé providing an exceptional starting point, we believe GP2 will be based on the R56 and follow in the tradition of the first GP. We’ve also heard rumblings of another limited GP like model for the coup down the road – theoretically making way for a R56 based GP. but it’s important to remember that these details haven’t been confirmed by additional sources.

MINI will once again finish the cars away from normal production line at Plant Oxford with unique parts both inside and out. Look for a MINI Challenge-esque rear aero and a large rear wing. Expect unique 18″ wheels as standard, complimenting a one-of-a-kind variation of the JCW body kit.

The JCW engine will likely be modified to get at least 220 hp (in European trim) and the car will be fitted with the JCW suspension as standard. We haven’t confirmed that it will be dropping the rear seats, but given MINI’s emphasis on achieving a lighter weight, we expect it. Of course if our info is off and it is coupe based, expect minimal structural changes inside.

In late October of 2005, MINI celebrated the brand’s success with the first MINI United. That inaugural world MINI event was the perfect venue to debut the GP – a thank you of sorts to MINI enthusiasts. We expect history repeat itself in 2012 with MINI United being the likely public debut of the GP2. From there don’t be surprised to see it travel to MTTS in July and finally make its way to dealer lots this fall.

Pricing, like the specs is still very hush hush. But expect the $31k price of the original GP to be eclipsed.

We’re not entirely sure who deserves credit for the video (which comes to us via MotoringUnderground) but we thank them for giving us the very first look at the second generation GP.

Full Gallery

  • Hsmithalind


  • Anonymous

    I’d be interested.

  • Christopher W

    I already put in a reservation (and $$$) at my dealer for the one they are going to get.  

  • I have posted this before but a very inexpensive way to set the JCW or now the GP apart would be wider wheel arches. They are just stamped black plastic so would be an inexpensive upgrade. BMW took this road with the 1M vs. the 135 and it would work nicely here. The R56 desperately needs a dose of the “mean”.

    • The 1M had an entirely new body in white that cost tens of millions to engineer and produce 🙂

      • I understand the 1M fenders are metal and therefore changes were expensive. I was only talking about the visual differences vs. the 135/128 to make the model stand apart. The car looks special. On the Mini this difference could be easily achieved by designing some new plastic wheels arches and rockers since they just bolt on.

        • jeff

           the problem is that there is still the metal lip beneath the black plastic trim.  you could add a bigger flare, but your wheel dimensions would still be somewhat limited by the underlying metal arch.

    • Anonymous

       IMO standard JCW suspension and a wider stance is all that is needed for the GP… Sounds like JCW Susp will be standard – doubt it on the wheels being spaced out. So many cars have these extra wide fenders that are not needed. Besides having the wheels at four corners is a MINI thing – widening the fenders might dilute that look.

      • 1/2″ wider fender with 1/2″ wider wheel would get the same stance just more aggressive looking.

      • BP

        No, the GP needs a bit more then that. It should be able to run circles around other Mini JCW’s. It’s suppose to be the top dog Mini. It definitely needs wider fenders, wider wheels, and a nice bump in HP. Otherwise, what’s the point, your paying for some badges and decals. 

  • JonPD

    Should be interesting to see it in its final design. I have a spot for one with my dealer, though I was hoping for a R58 GP. glad to hear there still might be a chance.

  • John

    Personally I think they shoulda gone with a different model ie. the Coupe or a beefed up CM.  I know that’ll really rile the original GP and R56 fans but other than internals this GP isn’t going to stand out much from the original.  The Coupe would be a good choice as it already comes sans backseats and adding an internal roll cage, etc. like the endurance car could make the Coupe beast as hell!  I’m not going to complain about their choice though.  The R56 is great!

  • David

    From Webster’s Ninth: diffuser: a device (as slats at different angles) for deflecting air from an outlet in various directions. Using the term defuser to describe the functional aero device at the back of the car misinforms your readers. I hope this version of the GP will be made available to Canadians.

    • He’s not referring to the wing. He’s referring to the slats under the rear bumper, which do exactly that. They break up the air coming under the rear of the car and help disrupt the low-pressure area that builds up behind a squared off car like the MINI, which causes a lot of drag.

      Glad your dictionary is getting such thorough use.

      • David

        I was not referring to the wing either, only pointing out the word defuser was not the correct term.  I am glad to see this corrected as diffuser. As for the dictionary use, being that this was the second time in recent memory that defuser was used in error, I felt the Webster’s reference was appropriate. Being that the comment was removed, apparently content accuracy may be a sensitive issue…

  • Bob Hayhurst

    Exceptional video. Thanks to whoever shot it. It’s a shame we couldn’t hear the exhaust tone. My opinion; this thing needs a bigger wing. I mean WRC size (ok, maybe not quite that big) and a wider rear stance. I like the idea of wider rear wheel arches/fender flares. I don’t know if the existing bodywork/trim could accommodate such a thing but I would love to see it. It would give the car the “presence” it needs to distinguish it from any other model. I’d love to see it @MTTS this year…

  • Bob Hayhurst

    And I mean something akin to this…

    as it pertains to wing size…

  • b-

    I hope that this car is not JUST the GP2.  More than a copy of what the GP was back in 2006.

  • Multiple Publics

    I wonder if it will have the red mirror caps, or if the design/color will be anything like the previous one?

  • HERR26

    It is as they say – The final swansong for the R56 , just as the original GP lead out to the R56. So no Coupe as yet , but watch this space further down the line. As they are testing Coupe’s with the same engine upgrades at Miramas.

    Yes. The MINI JCW GP will premiere in France at MINI United 2012. Following that it will make an appearance at the Mondial l’auto or the Paris Autoshow in October. With deliveries commencing afterwards.

    • Frank Granados

      I am far more interested in seeing the third generation MINI. I want to see how BMW is going to entice us R53 owners back into MINI showrooms.

      • Same here, but looks like the cross development with the FWD 1-series has pushed that car back to being a 2014 model with a 2013 fall intro.

  • BP

    I loved my Mini JCW, I just wish they would make an all out performance model, limited production JCW Pro-GP 270-300hp (AWD from the countryman) JCW Pro-GP should be able to compete with EVO’s and STI’s out there as far as acceleration is concerned. 

    When I sold my JCW I bought a 370Z, performance was great but I missed the back seat. So I convinced my wife to buy a WRX, loved the AWD 265hp and plenty of room. Still craved more power, on to the 2012 Shelby GT500 with the SVTPP package. Once you drive a car with 550hp, their is no turning back. And before any one says, oh that’s just a muscle car, only goes fast in a straight line. Don’t kid yourself, I had faster lap times at Button willow and Fontana over the Mini and the 370Z. The only thing I’d say the Mini would excel at would be Autocross or a very short tight track. Oh, and definitely miss the gas mileage. 🙂

    Anyway, what I’m trying to say is Mini needs to really up there game, they have the capabilities and a huge potential market if they can build a limited production high performance vehicle.  Heck, my friend just bought a new 2012 Vette a few months ago, and decided he wanted a more sensible daily driver as a 2nd car. He remembered my Mini and started asking questions, eventually bought a slightly used “S” and was really surprised at how good it handled and how much fun it was too drive. He told me straight up, if their was a Mini that could do 0-60 in 5 sec and 1/4 mile in about 13 ish he would sell the Vette to buy it, even if it were $40K. I know you can modify the heck out of one to get those figures, but I’m talking straight from the factory.

    I’d have to agree with him, I would too go back to the Mini in a heartbeat. I just hope I don’t have to wait 10+ years to see a Mini like that.  🙁

    I think the problem is with BMW, I’m sure they feel if people want that kind of performance they will just move over to BMW brand and buy a 135i or 1M. I didn’t, I want the same performance of the 1M, but in a Mini. I think a lot of other people out there would agree. There is no reason why they can’t sell a Mini and a BMW with similar performance and price range. 

    Here is the line up BMW, if your listening.  Mini Cooper, Mini Cooper S, Mini Cooper JCW, Mini Cooper JCW GP and Mini Cooper JCW GP Limited.