MINI Makes it Official: The New GP Will Be the Fastest MINI Ever

Over a month ago we broke the news tha a new GP was coming and debuting at MINI United this May. Last night in New York we got official confirmation.

Dr Kay Segler, head of MINI during the era of the first GP and now the second was on hand and gave a general overview of the MINI brand of new producs. But it was the news of the GP that was particularly exciting.

He did something that we’ve come to expect from Dr. Segler. He gave us a tease (via Autoblog). He dropped this tasty fact: the new GP will be 20 seconds Faster than the first GP around the famed Nurburgring race track. 20 seconds is an eternity even around a track like the Ring. How is this possible?

We checked with our sister site BimmerFile to get some background. What we found was that the R56 JCW, with it’s additional torque and lighter weight lapped the Ring a full 20 seconds quicker than the R53 JCW.

  • 8:35 MINI John Cooper Works R56
  • 8:55 MINI Cooper S John Cooper Works R53

Considering those numbers, going from the R53 platform to the R56 should be responsible for about 20 seconds a lap by itself.

Does that make the new GP less impressive? Absolutely not. But the real question will be how much closer to the 8:00 mark it will get. Our guess is that we’ll see it in the 8:20 range when Sport Auto finally gets their hands on it.

In the meantime all eyes will be on MINI United this May as the wraps come off. We’ll be there reporting as it happens.

(All numbers are from German auto publication Sport Auto)

  • Dr Obnxs

    It will be interesting to see how it all comes to be. The current MINI punches above it’s weight class, but shaving 20 sec off the 08 JCW lap time would put it in the realm of some very impressive cars indeed. Here’s one of the more comprehensive lists of lap times:


    • Dr Obnxs

      I’d misread the article. 20 sec faster than the last GP is probably about ~5 sec faster than the current S…. Bit better aero, bit more torque under the curve, bit better suspension tuning and bingo!

      • Nope. The R53 GP made 8:41, the current R56 JCW 8:35…This will be AT LEAST 8:21, but rumours say it’s able to make the ring in 8:15, which would make it the fastest FWD car behind the RenaultSport Megane 265. Impressive given the size difference.

        This Mini is going to be insanely quick.

        • Man, that is mighty quick. I hope they can overachieve on this one. Can’t wait to see it without the camo.

    • eyehatecommies

      “punches above it’s weight class”? This site doesn’t need anyone plagurizing the apologizer in chief.

      • GOPTalkingPoints

        Seriously? I had no idea that  Graham Norton was an apologizer in chief. 

        • eyehatecommies

          that would be BHO who can be seen uttering this phrase to a dozen different dignitaries if one cares to check youtube under “the world mocks us”

        • Could we reserve the politics for other venues, folks? I’d really appreciate it. Thanks.

        • Dr Obnxs

          WTF??? punching above a weight class come from BOXING!!! There is a reason this phrase has entered the vernacular, and that’s because it conveys the idea that one is overachiving.

          Really, the lap times of the MINI show that a very capable chassis can do a lot without a lot of HP. This formula is the opposite of what makes an impression in the magazines, which is usually a pissing contest over peak HP. While this number is great for marketing, it is far from the best indication of the capabilities of a car.

  • want want want want want want want…. I’d be willing to trade my precious towards this new one. ONLY if I can get it in red and black. 

  • Greg

    So what does the JCW Coupe do around the Nurburgring race track. I thought that the Coupe was the fastest Mini to-date?

    Will the GP be faster than the Coupe?

    • Jon

      Make no mistake, it absolutely WILL be the fastest production MINI yet produced, eclipsing the previous GP, and all other MINIs, (including the Coupe, even in JCW form).  This is MINI’s top-tier performance car.

      I was actually hoping that the new GP would be the Coupe, instead of the standard MINI (R56), because of aerodynamics and a generally more aggressive, racier look. It already has shed the rear seat, too. It just seemed like a logical choice.

      • You may get your wish…. eventually.

        • HERR26

          Yes not only the Coupe but possibly the Countryman and its upcoming sibling.  The Countryman is the logical choice because of its status as MINI’s global best-selling model. The JCW is the litmus test to see if people crave more.

          The best thing about the GP II? This is NOT an average car , I have not driven it but the people who have say it is absolutely ballistic.  .   A car that is more substance than marketing exercise. It wont be an Audi A1 Quattro – which judging by the reviews in the German media is another “Average” fast Audi lacking  real substance for an astronomical price tag.      

        • JonPD

          ///Momsport insired thinking bringing us another performance crossover  eh 😉

        • Anonymous

          I actually think that the CM in a lowered ride height with increased track would outperform any other MINI- I say that because on certain tracks (the Ring included) weight is not always a penalty where width is a huge plus. 

        • JonPD

          Any huh

        • JonPD

           Btw just was a attempted bit of humor Michael. The R60 is always is going to be the slower car as its likely to share its motor with the smaller and lighter siblings. Think the video does show that a smaller car can still out wrestle much bigger things.

        • Anonymous

          Oh I wouldn’t count on the CM always having the same motor 🙂 

        • JonPD

          Not with the SUV ///M obsessed having any say in the matter.  HAH

        • Anonymous

          This makes me smile…. MINI going to finally explore real performance models from the factory. The thing I worry- PSA is using the Prince to put out 260ish hp in a cheaper package that drives well. So will MINI price themselves out and need to keep these GP models as limited run models to make the price premium more attractive. 

          M doesn’t have caps on volume outside the special runs and if GP is going to be the Performance arm of MINI they shouldn’t have caps either. 

      • hatether56

        Big deal. It’s like saying you’re the tallest midget. There are faster cars for less money. Had it with Mini’s rediculous prices.

  • DrMaustus

    Am I right in assuming we won’t get this in Canada? Again??? They wouldn’t bring the R53 GP here due to crash testing or some such nonsense…

    • Lemelou

      Calling all North Eastern Americans on this forum!

      Please purchasing in LARGE numbers this new GP!

      (On the inside, i hope one of you will get a second or third or forth kid and your wife will force you to sell the GP, slightly used, after a mere year of passion. Snickers, snickers. Watch and learn DR Mautaus)

  • Sign me up!

  • Kurtster

    I’m ready to put a deposit down on one. However, if I can’t get it with the cold weather package and NAV system, I may just get a JCW coupe. My dealer knows little about how it can be ordered right now. What I really want to know is the 0-60 time. I will be doing that a lot, and will probably never drive it around the Nurburgring so knowing how fast it is around that track is kind of meaningless to me. Besides, was the Stig driving it or some bloke off the street?

    • Jon

      Agreed; the lap time for the ‘ring is to be taken with a grain of salt. The only way to due the ‘ring time benchmark true justice is to have the same driver test drive a GP version 1.0 against the GP version 2.0 on the same exact day, back-to-back, using the exact same line, fuel, tires, etc. I’d volunteer for that job, but sadly, it’ll probably never happen.