John Cooper Garages, the shop and dealership owned by Mike Cooper that has become the spiritual home of the JCW brand is reportedly closing its doors on August 4th. It’s unclear how much this has to do with Mike Cooper selling the rights to the John Cooper Challenge (now called the MINI Challenge) or partnering with BMW to offer the JCW kit at the factory. It’s also interesting to read this in light of rumors we ran last year saying that BMW was considering buying JCW brand. We know that BMW is developing the next JCW kit in house and with resources from within BMW and MINI rather than working with JCG. We also know that demand for the current, dealer installed JCW kit has fallen off dramatically since it became a factory option. Or it could simply have come down to location. I’m told that the current area in which the JCG is located isn’t able to draw a large customer base and isn’t easily upgradable to a larger/newer facility.
In any event, it’s sad to see this change. While it’s true that the BMW/JCW relationship will continue unabated (especially considering BMW has been spearheading JCW developement for awhile) the connection to JCG provided a direct link to a storied history of Mini tuning.
It’s worth noting that this probably will not have any effect on the availability of JCW or John Cooper Motorsports accessories in the near term.
We’ll have updates on this in the coming weeks. In the meantime you can checkout the JCG website and see some of the their Motorsport products (still available) here.
[ BMW/MINI to Buy JCW? ] MotoringFile
[ Cooper Timeline ] JohnCooper.co.uk