World Premier: 2013 JCW MINIs

The 2013 JCWs have been announced with the new valvtronic engine. Surprisingly, outside of the Countryman, the JCW range will not have higher output. The HP figure will remain at 211 hp (208 for the US) for the R5X range of JCW cars. Furthermore we’ve heard rumors from well placed sources that the US spec JCW Countryman may also end up with 208 hp rather than the higher 218hp figure seen in Europe. The upside is that the 2013 JCW will be the most efficient JCW ever and on par with the substantially less powerful Cooper S thanks to technologies such as Brake Energy Regeneration.

Also new for 2013 is the option of the six speed Aisin automatic across the entire JCW range.

Official Release: In keeping with the times, MINI will inject the ultra-sporty performance characteristics of its John Cooper Works models with even greater efficiency from July 2012 with the introduction of a new-generation engine and other far-reaching powertrain innovations. Fresh from an intensive course of further development, the twin-scroll turbo engine develops the same levels of output and torque as its predecessor, but will make drivers’ hearts beat faster with its even quicker responses and stoke their admiration with substantially reduced fuel consumption and emissions. A much broader spread of MINIMALISM technology helps to enhance the efficiency of the John Cooper Works models, and all members of the sub-brand’s line-up can now be fitted as an option with a six-speed automatic gearbox. Added to which, the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman comes with the MINI ALL4 all-wheel-drive system as standard.

New-generation engine for the John Cooper Works models offers instantaneous power delivery and a restrained appetite for fuel.

An outstanding baseline concept and a constant flow of innovations provide the basis for sustained success in race competition and beyond. Indeed, a rigorously applied strategy of further development has also given the road-spec John Cooper Works models a decisive edge in their respective segments. Expertise refined over years of motor sport involvement has ensured ultra-sporty driving fun by perfecting the interplay of a powerful engine, advanced chassis technology, and bespoke exterior and interior design elements. And so the John Cooper Works models are poised to embark on the new season stronger than ever and with fresh power under the bonnet.

The family of elite athletes in the MINI ranks welcomes another new member in the shape of the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman. The five-door model is fitted with a particularly powerful variant of the new-generation engine. Its 160 kW/218 hp is channelled through an all-wheel-drive system to deliver a new take on outstanding performance that can be enjoyed not only on the road but also over rough terrain. Peak torque of 280 Newton metres (207 lb-ft) is available between 1,900 and 5,600 rpm, and the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman dashes from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 7.0 seconds – regardless of whether the power flows through the standard six-speed manual gearbox or the optional six-speed automatic. Top speed is 225 km/h / 140 mph (automatic: 223 km/h / 139 mph). Equally impressive is average fuel consumption in the EU test cycle of 7.4 litres per 100 kilometres / 38.2 mpg (automatic: 7.9 l/100 km / 35.8 mpg) and CO2emissions of 172 grams (184 g) per kilometer.

The new-generation engine can also be found in the MINI John Cooper Works, MINI John Cooper Works Clubman, MINI John Cooper Works Convertible, MINI John Cooper Works Coupe and MINI John Cooper Works Roadster. The further developed powerplant is based on the unit in the MINI Cooper S and likewise uses a twin-scroll turbocharger, petrol direct injection and variable valve control based on the BMW Group’s VALVETRONIC system. This throttle-free load control technology optimises both the responsiveness of the engine and its efficiency; lightning-fast reactions to the driver’s requests for power go hand-in-hand with a restrained appetite for fuel.

The technical make-up of the 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine – which sports a John Cooper Works logo on its cover – has a direct link to the development of race-trim engines and has been honed exclusively for the John Cooper Works models. Its cylinder block and bearing mounts are made from aluminium and join forces with reinforced pistons, a particularly high-strength cylinder head and low-weight crankshafts. The exhaust valves are sodium-filled to help provide the extra cooling required by a turbocharged engine, and the intake camshaft features infinite phase adjustment.

The turbocharger, meanwhile, develops even greater charge pressure than the engine in the MINI Cooper S Coupe. The likewise bespoke exhaust system can be identified from the outside by its polished stainless steel twin tailpipes. The engine produces its maximum output of 155 kW/211 hp at 6,000 rpm, while peak torque of 260 Newton metres (192 lb-ft) is on tap between 1,850 and 5,600 rpm. The overboost function allows this figure to be raised to 280 Newton metres (207 lb-ft) for a short time between 2,000 and 5,200 rpm.

The new engine links up as standard with a six-speed manual gearbox tuned to suit its performance characteristics. However, the John Cooper Works models can now also be ordered as an option with a six-speed automatic gearbox with Steptronic function. The automatic also allows the driver to change gear manually using either the selector lever or the shift paddles on the steering wheel.

MINIMALISM technology delivers top performance and increased range.

In addition to the improvements made to the engine’s efficiency, the more extensive use of fuel consumption and emissions-reducing technology makes the John Cooper Works models more credible ambassadors than ever for the principle of MINIMALISM. Only rarely will the unparalleled driving fun need to be interrupted to refuel, thanks to technology such as Brake Energy Regeneration, which concentrates power generation for the in-vehicle network during periods under braking and on the overrun. Working in tandem with the manual gearbox, the Auto Start/Stop function switches the engine off automatically when the car stops at junctions and in traffic tailbacks, while the Shift Point Display advises the driver of the most efficiency-enhancing moment to change gear. The electric power steering also does its bit to reduce fuel consumption, its electric motor only using energy when power assistance is actually needed. This array of innovations has helped optimise the balance between driving fun and fuel consumption displayed by all the John Cooper Works models. Indeed, fuel consumption in the EU test cycle has been cut by up to 0.5 litres per 100 kilometres, depending on the model. The MINI John Cooper Works races from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.5 seconds (automatic: 6.7 sec) on the way to a top speed of 238 km/h / 148 mph (236 km/h / 147 mph). Average fuel consumption stands at 6.6 litres per 100 kilometres / 42.8 mpg (automatic: 7.1 l/100 km / 39.8 mpg) and CO2 emissions come in at 153 grams (165 g) per kilometer.

The MINI John Cooper Works Clubman also blends imposing acceleration – 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.8 seconds (automatic: 7.0 sec) – and a top speed of 238 km/h / 148 mph (236 km/h / 147 mph) with exemplary fuel economy of 6.7 litres per 100 kilometres / 42.2 mpg (automatic: 7.2 l/100 km / 39.2 mpg) and CO2 emissions of 155 grams (167 g) per kilometre. The MINI John Cooper Works Convertible sprints from rest to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.9 seconds (automatic: 7.1 sec) and reaches a top speed of 235 km/h / 146 mph (233 km/h / 145 mph). Yet its fuel consumption is just 6.8 litres per 100 kilometres / 41.5 mpg (automatic: 7.3 l/100 km / 38.7 mpg) and CO2 emissions are limited to 157 grams (169 g) per kilometer.

A 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) time of 6.4 seconds (automatic: 6.6 sec) makes the MINI John Cooper Works Coupe the fasting-accelerating of these elite athletes, and it also boasts a top speed of 240 km/h / 149 mph (238 km/h / 148 mph). This outstanding sporting potency belies average fuel consumption of 6.6 litres per 100 kilometres / 42.8 mpg (automatic: 7.1 l/100 km / 39.8 mpg) and CO2 emissions of 153 grams (165 g) per kilometre. The MINI John Cooper Works Roadster reaches 100 km/h (62 mph) from rest in 6.5 seconds (automatic: 6.7 sec) and continues on to a top speed of 237 km/h / 147 mph (235 km/h / 146 mph). Its average fuel consumption comes in at 6.8 litres per 100 kilometres / 41.5 mpg (automatic: 7.3 l/100 km / 38.7 mpg), with CO2 emissions recorded as 157 grams (169 g) per kilometer.

Racing feeling and unmistakable style.

All John Cooper Works models combine their stand-out sporting potential with unmistakable looks and special equipment features which accentuate the feeling of race competition both inside the car and out. Standard specification includes the Sport Button (which allows the driver to tweak the car’s accelerator responses and steering characteristics), particularly powerful brakes, the DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) system including DTC (Dynamic Traction Control) and EDLC (Electronic Differential Lock Control) for the driven axle, plus bespoke 17-inch light-alloy wheels (MINI John Cooper Works Countryman: 18-inch) and runflat tyres. The likewise standard John Cooper Works aerodynamic kit optimises both the airflow over and around the cars, and their visual impact. Exclusive paint finishes and roof colours, plus an ultra-sporty interior ambience with special seat upholstery variants and interior trim elements, add further bespoke touches. Customers can now order Striped Alloy and Pepper White interior trim elements, for example. And the standard-fitted sports steering wheel now features a John Cooper Works logo in the lower section of the centre spoke.

The John Cooper name has embodied the successful relationship between the British small car and sporting competition for several decades. It was back in the 1960s that the legendary sports car designer hit upon the idea of injecting a fresh dose of enjoyment into everyday road driving, and extra-potent variants of the classic MINI soon carried his name. Today, the MINI sub-brand John Cooper Works represents the epitome of race-track feeling and stand-out performance. The six elite athletes that make up the John Cooper Works range, along with options and accessories designed to enhance the agility of any MINI and lend all variants of the car a more defined sporting character, create a powerful advertisement for the brand’s motor sport genes.

  • Damuiw

    Any new word on when the JCW Countryman will it the US? Pricing?

    • I expect it with the rest of the 2013 models in the autumn.

      As for price, expect the normal JCW premium, plus Sport Suspension (which is standard) plus a little more for odds and ends.

  • oldsbear

    So now the Aisin 6-speed can handle the JCW’s torque….

    • walk0080

      Wonder if they improved the auto box or just stuck it in there and hope if don’t break.

      • oldsbear

        That’s my thought.

  • gruswitz

    By my calculation those mpg numbers are imperial. So the Countryman is ~32mpg vs the current Countryman All4 which gets 31. The hp goes from 181 to 208, so despite the efficiency ravings this is mainly a performance improvement. Correct? Since the US gets 208 hp instead of 218, does that mean a difference in efficiency? Is this the JCW Countryman All4 that was reviewed. I’d almost go for the JCW just to get the improved clutch mentioned in the review.

    • I would.

      • jeff

         any info as to whether they’re taking the clutch criticisms to heart?  or is this improved unit going to be staying in the JCW range?

      • walk0080

        Is this clutch more improved than the current R56/2012 JCW clutch or just the same improved clutch over the S model?

      • Hemisedan

        Gabe, I have a couple of question for you that you can either answer via my email, or here. I know that you weren’t all that enamored with the JCW in 2010 & 2011 and thought that the MCS was a better choice. I think that you had a 2009 JCW and now you have the JCW Roadster which I love. What are your thoughts as to the JCW vs the MCS now, especially in the Roadster as I believe that is what I will be getting into in 2014. Keeping in mind that right now I drive a 2011 JCW hatchback. Just everything that I see about the F56 just begins to turn me off, from the speedometer that looks rather rinky dink to the gas filler being on the BMW side. To me, it sure is telling that the platform was designed with BMW in mind. I don’t buy the safety angle. But, this post is about JCW’s and while I am at it, do you think that there will be any changes in the R series cars in 2014? Thanks.

  • Jason Parry

    It must be hard to get much more out of that 1.6… I wish the auto was a dual clutch.

    •  [sarcasm]If only Saab was still around to honor it’s deal with BMW to purchase the Prince engine and turn it into a jet engine, maybe they could have gotten a few HP out of it.[/sarcasm] 

      It sounds like the next gen 8 and 9 speed autos (for the F56) will be a great improvement.  Even if they aren’t DSGs they should shift almost as quick and be lighter and theoretically simpler and reliable.  It will be interesting to see if they also change the torque converter lockup percentage to give it more engaging feel and greater efficiency.

  • walk0080

    They obviously cannot increase the JCW HP or it will be the same as the new GP…

    Nice to see they have improved efficiency and responsiveness of the engine. I do wonder if the full valvetronic will take away a lot of the current JCW character though. Part of the character is that it is more rough and unrefined.

  • robblef

    So the JCW is getting the valvetronic engine but no HP bump..  I’d much rather have the 2012 model so it could be chipped.  My 2009 JCW was putting  out 219HP to the wheels and 267lb torque to the wheels with simpley software and a larger intercooler.. (can’t chip the valvetronic engines yet)

    Jason “It must be hard to get much more out of that 1.6…”  <- not true at all.  A simple software change can dramatically increase the output.

    • Brian

      Why is the that valvetronic cant be “chipped” ?

      • chad

        simply that it will take the aftermarket time to develop ECU tunes for the valvetronic units. i believe several aftermarket shops are working on it now for the MCS valvetronic engines.

  • I know some critics may deride the lack of a power upgrade but do not dismiss the advantage of having a smoother, faster revving and more efficient engine.  I think of my first 2003 R53 that was so slow to rev (partially thanks to the heavy dual-mass flywheel) and what a contrast it was the first time I drove an R56 (or any Honda for that matter).  At first I wondered why MINI couldn’t get an extra few hp as they did with the R56 S refresh but it made sense when I thought of the GP.  Because the GP will need the power bump the standard JCW would never be allowed to compete with it.  That is unfortunately telling for what little bump the GP will get. 

    The press release did leave me with a few questions such as when/if the non-JCW cars will get Brake Energy Regeneration and Start/Stop technology as I’ve been waiting for this for a long time.  Perhaps it’s baked into the cost of the JCW for the moment.  I also found it interesting that only the manual will have the option of the Start/Stop technology.  I believe when BMW first introduced the alternator-less start/stop and brake regeneration as part of their “Efficiency Dynamics”, it was first available on manuals but quickly progressed to automatics.  MINIs outside the US have had brake energy regeneration and auto start/stop (manuals only) since 2008 I believe, so it’s nice to finally see MINI USA getting the goods, but it would be even nicer to see it across the range.  I doubt the justacooper R56 could get over 40mpg with just brake regen as the original R50 (and R56 pre-2008) did due to the EPA’s adjustment in calculation in 2008 and their inability to take into account auto start/stop tech, but it would be nice.  The market is starting to flood with small cars getting over 40mpg, and MINI is loosing a slight edge (even though it will always be the performance-oriented choice) although the F56 and it’s purposed 3-cylinder engine and 8 or 9 speed autos should counter that.

  • Chris Underwood

    JCW Countryman is hawt.

  • Rfritz

    The press release posted seems to be a general press release – not targeting any one country.

    Should we really assume that US-bound JCWs will get stop/start etc?

    •  Good point.  Fingers crossed and breath held (just like I did for the Cooper SD…)

  • Captain

    The JCW Countryman finally makes we want to consider the 4 door beast.  The proportions look right w/the suspension and 18″ wheels.  Decent 0-60 and dare to dream, maybe the body roll is finally contained to a point where it regains more, er, MINI like handling.

    • friend or fiend

       Sure you could consider it, but if you already had a taste for the superior hardtop, would you really make that kind of performance compromise?

  • MeMota

    Is this July delivery or July production?

    Any word on when this will hit Australia for the JCW hatch?

    •  Dealers here in the UK had a message the other week that this update is delayed until September

      • MeMota

        Thanks Rakey. Disappointing. I have a JCW hatch on order and it’s prob going into June or July production. Now to try and decide whether to try and wait or not.

  • m8o

    Why is Mini Corporate or US [likely, corporate] doing everything they can to ensure I don’t buy the JCW Countryman? 

    • I assure you that’s not the case. Thy said what do you want the JCW R60 to have that it doesn’t?

      • m8o

        It was in response to the note “Furthermore we’ve heard rumors from well placed sources that the US spec JCW Countryman may also end up with 208 hp rather than the higher 218hp figure seen in Europe.”  The power to weight ratio is not where I’d hoped it would be years back even @ 218 let alone what’s conveyed in that note.  And I’ve come to terms w/the fact that the JCW CM AWD won’t be the right alternative for me in the not so distant future as I’d hoped.  ….can’t please everyone.

  • Dilligent8910

    No question about it, all arrows are implicitly and/or explicitly pointing in the direction of DIESEL to deliver desired economy and performance. How about a DIESEL GP!

    • Personally, the MOST fun I’ve ever had in a MINI was driving a Clubman SD on the autobahn. I’d buy that car tomorrow. The Countryman SD was also brilliant and maybe 8/10 of the grunt I experienced in the JCW prototype.

  • memota

    I’m reading this new engine is delayed until at least Sept production now, after the plant’s shutdown, with the current engine stopped at the end of June. So all JCW’s scheduled for post June will now be pushed back.

    And info on this please?

  • jimmizle

    Why do they keep stating they are more fuel efficient?! here in Australia the new engine is worse for fuel efficiency and has no more power? what’s the point in that?!