Many of you never thought we’d see this day come. Way back in 2014 we first told you about a project deep inside MINI to bring a 300 hp JCW Clubman and Countryman to market. Today that’s a reality with the debut of the 301 hp JCW Countryman and Clubman.
Let’s start with the numbers. The updated B48A20T1 four cylinder will produce 301 hp in North American trim. Even more impressive is the torque – a massive 331 ft-lbs of it at its peak. This gives the 2020 JCW Clubman & Countryman a 73 hp increase over the previous versions and makes these cars the most powerful MINIs ever produced.
Putting this power to the tarmac is a refined All4 system that is coupled with an updated 8 speed automatic and a mechanical differential lock. This allows the JCW Clubman to hit 60 mph in a scant 4.9 seconds. Thanks to a bit more weight JCW Countryman is .2 slower at 5.1 seconds.
Of course for MotoringFile readers none of this should come as a surprise. We’ve been giving you these details for years down to even the 0-60 times. And yes that also means our prediction of the new JCW Clubman and Countryman being automatic only is also confirmed with this release.
Transmission choice aside there’s lots to look forward to here. MINI has made some changes beyond just the engine with this new duo. They’ve heavily revised the cooling for the higher output 2.0L and the exhaust system is all new. There’s a revised suspension, engine mounts and revisions to the chassis as well. Finally for the Clubman there are new LED headlights, and LED rear lights in the Union Jack design. Look for the Countryman to get similar revisions when it received it’s LCI next year.
We’ll have much more on the JCW Clubman and Countryman in the coming days. Until then scroll down for the full release and photo gallery.
301 HP JCW Countryman and Clubman: Official MINI Release
With its new John Cooper Works Clubman and John Cooper Works Countryman, MINI introduces what is by some measure the most powerful models ever approved for public road use in the brand’s sixty-year history. The 301 hp. 4- cylinder turbo engine in the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman both display outstanding performance in the compact premium segment. In both models, the extraordinarily powerful engine is combined as standard with a new 8-speed Steptronic sports transmission, including mechanical differential lock on the front axle, an ALL4 all-wheel drive system, a specifically engineered chassis, and additional reinforcement modifications for the body structure, engine connection and chassis fastenings. This enables the John Cooper Works racing sensation to attain a completely new dimension of performance.
In these brand-new versions of the two top sports models, both the individual six-door model with its extreme driving fun and the robust all-rounder provide a challenging performance experience. The latest generation of the 4-cylinder engine developed for the John Cooper Works models with MINI TwinPower Turbo technology surpasses that of the previous drive by as much as 73 hp. at maximum output. Maximum torque has increased from 258 ft-lb to 331 ft-lb and acceleration performance has also risen commensurately. The new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman turns in an acceleration of 0 to 62 mph in 4.9 seconds, with the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman achieving the same in 5.1 seconds – 1.4 and 1.5 seconds faster than in the respective previous models. The elasticity of the two models has never been as impressive as it is now.
With the concentrated power of their new engine and its optimized ability to transfer its output onto either a road surface or loose terrain, the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman have assured their places in the leading line-up of sport models in the compact segment. And within the MINI model range, these two top athletes have never been more deserving of their top positions. Compared to the MINI Cooper S Clubman and MINI Cooper S Countryman, output has risen from its previous level of 38 hp. to 112 hp. The resulting superior performance characteristics are accompanied by a range of model-specific design and equipment features that successfully underline the exclusive and rarefied nature of these two John Cooper Works models.
Maximum output from four cylinders: New 2.0 liter engine with MINI TwinPower Turbo technology.
As the power source for extreme driving fun, the comprehensively redesigned 4- cylinder engine has been consistently oriented towards maximum output. It is based on the 2.0 liter drive from the MINI Cooper S Clubman and MINI Cooper S Countryman but has now undergone model-specific modifications to the crankshaft drive and also benefits from the latest generation of MINI TwinPower Turbo technology. These modifications are based on the John Cooper Works’ racing know-how and comprise a reinforced crankshaft, a main bearing with an extended cross-section, specific pistons, connecting rods, and a new vibration damper with optimized cooling.
The considerably increased output compared to the previous engine is also helped along by the bigger turbocharger. The compression ratio of the new engine has been reduced from 10.2 to 9.5 to match the increased system charging pressure. In addition, the turbocharger integrated in the exhaust manifold is fitted with a blow-off valve that contributes to its optimized response characteristics. The air intake duct has also been redeveloped and de-throttled as far as possible. The spontaneous power delivery in the engine is also supported by the latest generation of direct petrol injection. Its new multi-hole fuel injectors arranged between the valves enable an increased flow rate, transporting the fuel to the combustion chambers under an injection pressure of up to 350 ba. The fine vaporization enables precise metering of the fuel, which makes for especially clean combustion in addition to enabling optimum efficiency. The MINI TwinPower Turbo technology also includes fully variable valve control along the lines of the VALVETRONIC system patented by the BMW Group, as well as variable camshaft control on the intake and exhaust sides (double VANOS).
Independent cooling concept, specific sport gas system.
Spontaneous response to even the slightest movement of the accelerator pedal with a power delivery that is sustained up to the high load ranges are what characterize the incredible, sports-car-typical performance characteristics of the new powertrain. Similarly, a newly developed cooling system has been developed to satisfy the resulting demands placed on the job of temperature management. An optimum running temperature for the engine is guaranteed at all times – even under extreme conditions on the race track – by two external radiators, a model-specific expansion tank with an increased volume, an independent cooling module mounting, an electric ventilator with increased output, and a third cooling level realized using a condenser. To optimize warm up, the cooling of the crankcase can be temporarily deactivated by a new split cooling valve. In addition, the transmission has its own coolant circuit and external transmission oil cooler.
The high-performance drive of the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman generates a maximum torque of 331 ft-lb. in the broad engine speed range between 1,750 and 4,500 rpm, which is around 28 percent higher than that of the previous engine. The maximum output of the new 4-cylinder engine has been increased by approximately 32 percent. The new top level of 301 hp. is reached between 5,000 and 6,250 rpm. The resulting pulling power enables the new engine of the MINI John Cooper Works Clubman to produce an acceleration performance of 0 to 62 mph in 4.9 seconds, while the figure for the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman is 5.1 seconds, ensuring an impressive level of elasticity during spontaneous speed bursts. For the first time with MINI vehicles, the maximum speed of the new top sports performer is now electronically limited to 155 mph.
Speed burst maneuvers are accompanied by the striking sound of the newly developed, model-specific sport exhaust system. The extreme output of the engine makes itself more intensively felt than ever before, with an emotionally charged acoustic design that matches the load requirements while underlining its performance character. When driving at a relaxed pace with optimized consumption and low engine speeds, the sound produced is more reserved and sonorous. The twin exhaust system leads into a new, particularly large-volume rear silencer. With its low level of exhaust back pressure, this benefits the engine’s spontaneous power delivery. The external diameter of the tailpipe trims integrated in the right and left of the rear apron is 95 millimeters for the new
MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and 85 millimeters in the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman. To optimize emissions, the sports exhaust system is fitted with a petrol particulate filter. Emission control in both of the new John Cooper Works models is in line with the Euro 6d-TEMP standard.
8-speed Steptronic sports transmission, mechanical differential lock.
The transverse-mounted front engine in both of these extreme sport vehicles transmits its phenomenal power to the 8-speed Steptronic sports transmission – another new development. The latest generation of the transmission displays enhanced internal efficiency and an extended steering axis inclination. This means lower engine speeds when driving in a higher gear, which translates to lower fuel consumption. A new transmission control increases both the gear shift dynamics and driving comfort. Gear shifting and acoustic comfort have also been further optimized. The converter lockup clutch closes immediately after driving off, creating a direct connection to the engine, accompanied by a spontaneous driving experience. Shift paddles are mounted as standard on the steering wheel for manual gear selection. Moreover, the 8-speed Steptronic sports transmission offers a launch function for accelerating from standing with optimum traction and maximum dynamics.
The new automatic transmission also features an integrated differential lock It functions transversely to reduce the speed compensation between the front wheels. Under load conditions, this means that a locking effect of up to 39 percent can be generated. The mechanical differential lock is interconnected with the DSC (Dynamic Stability Control), which aids both the traction of the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman on loose terrain or in poor weather conditions, as well as the driving dynamics when taking bends with a sporty driving style. The locking effect has the result of transferring the drive torque to the other wheel should one front wheel start to spin. This prevents a loss of traction while maintaining propulsion – even with differing frictional values between the left and right wheels. Similarly, the differential lock supports the vehicle’s agility when changing direction quickly or accelerating dynamically out of a bend, by applying targeted shifting of the drive torque.
ALL4 all-wheel drive with model-specific components.
The ALL4 all-wheel drive system plays a central role in optimizing the cars’ traction, agility and driving stability; it is part of the standard equipment of the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman and was comprehensively redeveloped for the new edition of both models. The compact and weight-optimized all-wheel drive consists of a power take-off on the front axle transmission, a two-section propeller shaft, and rear axle transmission with an electro- hydraulically regulated hang-on clutch. The intelligent controller of the ALL4 system is interconnected with the DSC Dynamic Stability Control and constantly calculates the ideal power distribution ratio between the front and rear wheels. This means that the outstanding engine power is always channeled to the place where it can be most effectively and efficiently translated into driving fun.
In normal driving conditions with the DSC activated, it transmits the drive torque in the brand-typical manner to the front wheels. This allows the engine power to be converted into forward propulsion with maximum efficiency. But if the DSC controller detects a danger of slip on the front wheels, within a fraction of a second, the hang-on clutch will transfer the drive torque to the rear wheels with the aid of an electrohydraulic pump.
The most recent development in the ALL4 system was precisely coordinated with the extremely high engine output and enhanced drive dynamic potential of the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman. It consists of a reinforced gear set for the power take-off, a larger flexible disc for the propeller shaft leading to the rear wheels, and specific rear drive shafts with greater torsional rigidity.
The new, model-specific drive unit mountings are also of benefit to the increased precision in dynamic driving situations. The increased spring rate of the engine and transmission bearings results in a tauter connection between the drive units and the vehicle structure. This creates an effective acoustic barrier and optimizes the reaction moment in particularly sporty maneuvers. The new mounting also has a positive effect on both direct steering in bends and the response characteristics of the engine.
Evolved sport chassis, new sport brake system
At the same time as the engine was undergoing further development, the chassis technology of the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman was being enhanced to a new level of performance. The model-specific versions of the single-joint spring-strut-type axle for the front wheel and the multi-joint rear axle were optimized in terms of their component rigidity, kinematics and weight, to create a thrilling racing sensation from the amazingly high drive output. Newly designed swivel bearings enable improved camber values on the front wheels. Also, thanks to the specific rear-axle kinematics, this meant that it was possible to improve the potential for transmitting lateral guide forces in dynamic bends.
Moreover, the readjusted suspension and damping systems, the DSC Dynamic Stability Control and the electromechanical steering are precisely oriented towards the extremely agile character of the new top sports model. Optionally for both models, there is also an adaptive chassis with electronically controlled dampers. Judder dampers operate in line with a choice of two characteristic diagrams, coordinated for either sporty or more comfort-oriented driving scenarios; these can be activated in the MINI Driving Modes.
In the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman, both the standard sport chassis and the adaptive chassis, which enables the vehicle to be lowered by 10 millimeters in comparison with other vehicle types, are associated with a standard chassis. Also, part of the standard equipment are the 18 inch John Cooper Works light metal wheels in Black Grip Spoke design. However, John Cooper Works light metal wheels in 18 inch and 19-inch sizes are also optionally available.
The sport brake system has also been redesigned and now contains 4-piston, fixed- caliper disc brakes on the rear wheels to ensure constantly high braking values even under intensive use. The large brake discs of 360 × 30 millimeters at the front and 330 × 20 millimeters at the rear combined with optimized coolant duct geometry also play their part in achieving the high level of stability. The red-coated brake calipers at the front bear the John Cooper Works logo.
Body structure and chassis fastening with optimized rigidity.
The long wheelbase, large track width and low center of gravity that both models display is ideal for a chassis design and tuning aimed at consistent sports performance. In addition, the systematic reinforcement of the body structure and extremely taut chassis connections in the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman and the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman ensure maximum driving precision. Both models possess a newly developed precision strut for the engine compartment, which connects the right and left spring strut domes. The bracing of the front end is provided by specific arrow struts and a dome-bulkhead strut in the undercarriage.
The overall package put together by the John Cooper Works with its sheer dynamics, agility and precision, is completed by model-specific design features in the exterior, which serve to optimize the vehicles’ aerodynamic features and air duct design. The large air inlets on the front of the vehicle are designed to serve the cooling requirements of both the drive and the brake system. In addition, the outstanding performance characteristics are reflected in the model-specific design of the side skirts and the independent rear aprons with integrated diffuser elements. Model-specific roof spoilers play a role in reducing uplift at high travel speeds. In addition, the two new John Cooper Works models are equipped with aerodynamically optimized mirror caps.
Exclusive standard equipment, high-class options.
Other model-specific accentuations in the exterior include the optional contrast paintwork in red for the roof and the mirror caps, an individual design for the side scuttles by the additional indicators, and the John Cooper Works logo in the radiator grille and tailgate. The central air inlet of both models has a honeycomb pattern structure. The inlet of the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman also has a red surround. A red cross-member subdivides the newly designed radiator grille of the new MINI John Cooper Works Clubman. Its headlamps, rear lights and rear apron also display the new design of the latest model revision for the MINI Clubman.
The racing sensation has been elevated to new dimensions, which can be enjoyed on all five full-feature seats of the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman. The characteristic interior sports car flair of both cars are partly down to the John Cooper Works sports seats with integrated head rests, the John Cooper Works sport steering wheel with multifunction buttons, the John Cooper Works selector lever, and the anthracite headliner.
The exclusive standard equipment of both top sports models in the MINI range also includes LED headlamps, keyless ride, MINI Driving Modes, and the Radio MINI Visual Boost including 6.5-inch display with touchscreen function and a redesigned graphical display. The integrated Connected Media equipment is able to access numerous MINI Connected online services. Alternatively, there is also a choice of special equipment options, including Connected Navigation, with its easy-to-use routing function and additional infotainment options, as well as Connected Navigation Plus with an 8.8-inch touch display. In conjunction with these options, the Real Time Traffic Information service is also available, providing real-time data on the current traffic situation, a personal Concierge service and the MINI Online Internet portal, and it is also Apple CarPlay-ready. In addition, navigation map updates are automatically downloaded to the vehicle via the mobile network connection.