Since MINI bought the John Cooper Works name from the Cooper family, the brand has been slowly evolving the look and feel of its performance sub-brand. Today that visual evolution takes a dramatic step with an entirely new logo that is being unveiled alongside the new generation of MINIs recently announced this fall.
While we’ve seen the new logo (and identity) on several launch cars, MINI has yet to formally comment on the new logo and other aspects of the revised JCW identity. Today that changes as MINI is formally unveiling the logo in the most unlikely places – the season finale of the Rundstrecken-Challenge Nürburgring 2023.
The fact that the logo appears as the F56 JCW 1to6 edition race car is ironic given that it’s a car that will never wear it. The change over will correspond with the new generation of MINIs including the J01 MINI Cooper EV, F66/F67/F56 MINI Cooper ICE, U25 Countryman and the J05 MINI Aceman.
That’s a departure. Those were the first words that we uttered as we saw the new logo in a windowless room in Munich at a pre-reveal of MINI’s 4th generation models. But time has been kind to the design for us and we’re finally getting use to the rather dramatic change from the old “surf-board” logo style we’ve been used to. It’s a cleaner, more modern looking one that is also an easier read on the road.
That doesn’t mean the won’t miss that old elongated badge logo that dated back to 2002. The revised version that came out on the R56 was very evolutionary and more than anything cleaned up the type of make it more legible. This new version does away with all of us in an effort to mirror MINI’s new more minimal aesthetic. To us it’s successful on both counts but we have no doubt more than a few of you will be disappointed in such a big change.
Oh and about that race. Driven by Sebastian Sauerbrei (GER) and Friedhelm Thelen (GER), the MINI John Cooper Works 1to6 (complete with a 6-speed manual transmission) had a solid performance throughout the wet race and finished 53rd, out of 158 cars. In the class for production-based cars with a displacement of 1,600 to 2,000 cc and turbochargers, the black MINI John Cooper Works Edition finished 13th out of 23 cars that started.
raced the MINI John Cooper Works Edition. Sebastian Sauerbrei achieved his personal best placement in a 24-hour race this year behind the wheel of this exact car. Friedhelm Thelen is a Nürburgring expert and team boss of Bulldog Racing.