Mar 5th, 2013
When MINI released the first GP any part associated with it could only be bought if you had an actual GP VIN. It was assumed this would be the case with new GP as well. But surprisingly longtime reader Karl Muller did some digging and was able to order perhaps the more interesting of all parts on the new GP – the rear diffuser. And perhaps most surprising it was not only easy but relatively cheap and simple to install.
Mar 2nd, 2013
EVO Magazine – perhaps our favorite car mag – not only got its hands on a JCW GP but managed to get it to a track and pit it against the best hot hatches from around the world. The results speak volumes of what we’ve been saying about the GP. After our reviews (track drive, video review, road review) we’ve been blown away by the performance and the feel of the thing. Tiff Needell and Richard Meaden seem to agree. In fact even the raw numbers give the GP the edge over the much more powerful 350 HP Focus RS or the AWD 256 HP Audi S1 hitting the highest top-speed and having the quickest time around the track.
Check out the video after the break. continued →
Mar 1st, 2013
Limited to just 11 units and sold only in France, the awkwardly named “MINI John Cooper Works Countryman ALL4 Dakar Winner 2013″ is the first MINI to feature matte paint of any kind. While we don’t have confirmation yet, this amount of customization looks to be the work of BMW’s famed Individual division, a subsidiary of BMW M. However it could also MINI Yours finally getting access to some of BMW Individual’s options. Under the hood the JCW Dakar has the stock JCW power plant with the factory sport suspension and 19″ JCW wheels.
Will we see something like this in other markets? Likely not for Dakar since it has limited commercial appeal. However seeing some of these options on a limited edition car does bode well for other forthcoming small batch Countryman.
Official Release: Success in motor sport can be measured not only in titles and trophies, but also in an extra spike in driving fun out on the road. At least that’s the message from the MINI John Cooper Works Countryman ALL4 Dakar Winner 2013. MINI and John Cooper Works have launched this special-edition model to celebrate their triumph in the Dakar Rally 2013, the French duo of Stéphane Peterhansel and Jean-Paul Cottret piloting their MINI ALL4 Racing to overall victory in the world’s toughest rally event for the second year in a row. The MINI John Cooper Works Countryman ALL4 Dakar Winner 2013 is a limited-edition tribute to its rally inspiration – 11 examples of the car will be built, reflecting Peterhansel’s 11 Dakar wins. Exclusive design and equipment features showcase both the thrill of title-winning race performance and the euphoria surrounding this latest Dakar victory with authentic élan. continued →
Feb 28th, 2013
When we took possession of our long term JCW Roadster we told you we wanted to find out if the soft-top could indeed be an everyday, all year car. In the sun of California or other warm climates, it’s easy for the Roadster to make sense. Yet what happens when you throw it at the upper midwest? After six months of time with the car we’re starting to get a good answer to that. continued →
Feb 20th, 2013
This from the UK, Autocar has had a bit of fun pitting the new MINI JCW GP against a bonkers little kit Mini made out of racing bits and half a motorcycle. While one could hardly consider this a legitimate “comparison” it is a fun contrast between the two extremes of a track-only Mini mongrel and MINI’s self-described halo car. Video after the jump.
Feb 8th, 2013
This week I had the opportunity to not just drive the 2013 MINI John Cooper Works GP, but drive it on real, imperfect roads. Specifically, I was able to put the car through its paces on the narrow, rough mountain roads outside Ponce, in Puerto Rico. Gabe drove this limited edition car for the first time in Spain a few months back as part of the international product launch, but that was on the track (check out the video and written reviews). Impressive as the car was in that context, we both wondered what the car would be like in the wild. So we went to the twisting roads of Puerto Rico to find out.
Feb 2nd, 2013
Some of you may have missed this news buried in our interview with MINI USA’s head Jim McDowell and Marketing leader Tom Salkowski but it’s worth another mention. Bowing to pressure from MINI fans, MINI USA has devised a way to individually number each GP meant for the US market. MINI USA worked with MINI Design in Munich directly to create something that reflected the original design while working seamlessly with the new car.