Auto Express Compares the JCW to the Fiesta ST and the Vauxhall VXR

Earlier today our colleagues at Auto Express published a comparison between the new MINI John Cooper Works, the Vauxhall Corsa VXR, and the Ford Fiesta ST. While we don’t get the Vauxhall in the States, this triumvirate of cars appears to be on the shopping list of many hot hatchback enthusiasts across the Pond. Auto Express ranked these three vehicles on a series of attributes and the MINI came in second place. Let’s dive into the detail of the verdict.

With its racing heritage from the sixties and its millions of available configuration combinations, the JCW present a slight advantage over its competitors. In addition to that, the MINI is the only model proposing an auto transmission. For lovers of the clutch pedal like us it doesn’t matter much, but Auto Express appreciates the effort on MINI’s part. With a 0-60mph of 5.7 seconds, the JCW also fares much better than the Ford (6.4) and the Vauxhall (6.5). Although, the AT probably helps the MINI in that regard.

On the not so great side, Auto Express criticizes the price tag of the MINI. Prospective shoppers not familiar with the brand may have a hard time assessing the value brought by a $6,000 price difference with the Cooper S. This is even more accentuated when compared to the cheaper Ford and Vauxhall. While based on performance it makes sense to compare these vehicles, our opinion is that MINI and Ford or Vauxhall play in different spaces (niche vs. mass market). It would have been a good idea to throw the Audi S1 in the mix.

In the weeks and months to come, many comparisons involving the new JCW will hit the press, and we can’t wait to read them all. We will also bring you our detailed impressions after the JCW US Press Launch later in July.