As seen on MotoringFile, the new MINI John Cooper Works is in full launch mode. As such, our colleagues from various automotive news outlet have release their initial review of the most powerful MINI yet. While we won’t dwell on the mechanical specs of the car – we’re sure you must know them all by now – here is what [Auto Express](http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/mini/mini/91381/mini-john-cooper-works-2015-review) and [Auto Car](http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-review/mini/hatchback/first-drives/2015-mini-john-cooper-works-automatic-uk-review) have to say about this new JCW.
>To drive, the JCW is indeed surprisingly fast up to the legal limit and flexible enough in real-world use to keep up with any lower-order sports car – and any hot hatch up to, say, a Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG. The engine responds keenly, with gutsy low-end torque, a gravelly, crackling exhaust note and ample freedom at high revs.
>This one is much happier scything along smooth A-roads than it is pitching and bobbing, staccato-style, down a rough country lane. But it dives into those smooth apexes with instinctive zeal and responds to every input as if on a hair trigger.Equally, it’s not so stiff that its ride turns skittish, or its handling nervous, when you really extend it over the bumps. More steering feedback would be welcome, as would a stickier set of tyres than the standard-fit Pirelli Cinturatos – but perhaps Cowley’s next GP version of this car will have both.
>The Mini JCW has always looked like a pricey purchase, and this one is no different. Satisfied customers will value it as much for what it is – the ultimate Mini – as for what it does, because this isn’t the most multi-talented or usable hot hatch. For something likely to approach £30k after options, it’s not the quickest or most exciting for the money, either. However, considering the quality and desirability of the car, its capacity to retain its showroom value and its stirring motive character, the JCW has got more in its armoury than most of its rivals ever needed to succeed. And succeed it will.
>The new modular underpinnings of the latest MINI Cooper S showed promise of being able to handle and distribute more power effectively, the JCW proves that’s possible. There’s a slight squirm from the steering wheel under hard acceleration but torque steer is well contained, with the rorty crescendo of the new sports exhaust encouraging you to press on, especially with the crackles from the pipes on the overrun.
>Rather than a mechanical differential, MINI has bolted on a lighter and cheaper electronic diff. It’s capable of letting you tackle faster, sweeping bends more courageously, with the slight movement in the body allowing you to pinpoint exactly where the grip is. In tighter bends the electronic diff isn’t able to put the MINI’s power down with the conviction of the Corsa VXR fitted with a mechanical differential and the result is a whiff of understeer in the JCW.
>But this is where the MINI arguably comes into it’s own. You can counter the understeer with a slight lift of throttle mid corner, allowing the agile back end to become more mobile and follow the nose. There’s far more charm and interactivity in the MINI than you’ll find in the Audi S1, but like the Audi, the JCW’s steering could do with a touch more feel, despite being generally direct and positively weighted.
>One of its weak points for the MINI John Cooper Works is value, or lack of it. At £24,380 its almost £4,000 more than the Cooper S but add on some not-so-outrageous optional extras such as sat-nav, parking sensors, automatic air con and Bluetooth and that price escalates rapidly. Our test car came in at a smidge under £32,000 – an eye-watering figure for a hot hatch, never mind a MINI.
All in all both reviews appear to be positive. We can’t wait for comparison review, and to get our hands on it.