The most hardcore road-going Mini ever has been revealed. Dubbed Mini John Cooper Works Challenge, it’s intended to give a taste of the one-make race car of the same name without the hassle of actually going racing. Only 100 will be built.
It’s something of a skunkworks project, having been put together by OX4 Racing, a team of Mini employees that competes in the Mini Challenge, based at the Oxford factory.
It starts life as a Mini John Cooper Works, the most powerful Mini ever complete with a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine serving up 231bhp and 236lb/ft of torque, enough for a 0-62mph time of 6.3secs and a top speed of 153mph. A six-speed manual gearbox sends power to the front wheels.
To that is added trick Nitron suspension with coilover spring/dampers units adjustable for bump, rebound, ride height and camber; 330mm front brake discs with four-pot Brembo calipers from the Mini upgrades range and Mintex pads that aren’t; lightweight 17in Team Dynamics wheel with Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tyres and a Quaife limited-slip diff. With such storied names plastered all over it, the JCW Challenge should be immensely capable on track.
The car’s exterior is liberally sprinkled with bits from the JCW Pro accessories catalogue, including a front splitter, rear spoiler ‘add-ons’ and rear diffuser. Plus a carbonfibre front intake, mirror covers and exhaust tailpipe. Incidentally, that exhaust produces either ‘road’ or ‘track’ noise levels, controlled via Bluetooth.
Each Mini JCW Challenge is finished in white with unique graphics and a black interior. Standard kit includes parking sensors and adaptive LED headlights.
Given that none the chassis upgrades are what you’d call ‘cheap’, the asking price of £32,000 sounds quite reasonable. Especially as it’s perfectly possible to spend 40 grand on a normal Mini JCW if you go nuts with the options.
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By Only Motors