How Much is Too Much? MINI has often told us that they won’t be players in hot-hatch power wars and will instead focus on MINI’s forte – dynamics. Yet the 350 hp Focus RS and the 306 hp VW GTS Clubsport beg the question – should the JCW be putting out more power?
Lets look at the F300 from Manhart for a moment. Manhart is a well respected Motorsports company that takes tuning very seriously. And apparently takes modifying JCWs seriously as well. The F300 is a 300 hp variation of the 2.0L B48A20 JCW power plant. The upgrade kit (3.270,12 € / $3662.89) consists of software remapping and vmcx-removal, catless downpipes and intercooler. Perhaps unsurprisingly that’s it.
Most modern 2.0L four cylinders have the potential for substantial range in power output. For years we’ve heard rumors that the B46/B48 BMW four cylinder would range in output from 190 hp to 300 hp. However the notoriously conservative BMW has thus far only given us three tunes of the power plant – 189 (Cooper S), 231 (JCW and various BMWs) and 240 hp (various BMWs). Rumors of 260 hp and 300 hp variants persist with the latter being part of a M Performance offering (coupled with all wheel drive) destined for the X1 and forthcoming X2.
Where does that leave JCW? For now 231 is the answer. And according to sources that number will stay the same on the larger Clubman JCW All4 when it debuts later this year. The upgrade path to 240 is rather easy considering BMW already has a tune of the B48 at that level. And if there’s a M Performance variants that ups the power even further one would expect it could make an excellent choice for a high performance Clubman or Countryman in All4 guise.
However the answer for those of us looking to raise power outputs today remains the aftermarket.