In-Depth Review: Mini JCW, the British ultimate machine

In today’s review we have a Mini JCW, we will see what it offers and how much it will cost us to have one of these toys.

If you add 231 horsepower to a car that does not even weigh 1300 kg, you get one of the fastest Minis, the Mini John Cooper Works or the Mini JCW. Its turbocharged four-cylinder BMW engine leaves no one to displeasure, and the manual gearbox option pleases plenty of purists. Its attractive lines are certainly great, and of course, its sound makes you fall in love. With these three characteristics it would be difficult not to enjoy this car that is powerful, light and attractive, today we will explain in-depth everything about this Mini John Cooper Works.

To start getting into the matter, we are going to talk about the technical data of the car, later we will go inside and talk about the interior-components, then we will comment on the driving sensations and finally we will compare what it offers us for the price to be paid, which is definitely not a small amount.

As far as technical data is concerned, this Mini JCW three-door or also known as the f56, does not look bad. It has a turbocharged four in-line gasoline engine that develops nothing less than 231HP and generates 320NM. If we take into account its horsepower and we add it to its low weight, you get a power to weight ratio of 5.6 kg/hp, which is quite good, and makes it a very agile and fast car both in acceleration and top speed. The acceleration of this British machine is 6.3 seconds and the top speed is 246 km/h, I must say that it behaves very well when turning.

The car can be chosen with a 6-speed manual transmission or an 8-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, in case of choosing the automatic transmission, the steering wheel incorporates generous cams embedded in it. Its aerodynamic coefficient is 0.34, which allows it to have little resistance and good downforce. The car is front-wheel drive although the rear is easy to slide and is one of the most fun front-wheel drive cars to drive.

Mini promises us a combined consumption of 6.9 L/100km, which I must anticipate is not entirely true, if you are willing to have fun this car reaches 14 L/100km although to reach it you must go a bit crazy. If having fun is not your priority, the consumption that the British company promises is quite faithful to the real one.

We would expect to see the German manufacturer’s technology

On the inside we would expect to see the technology of the German manufacturer as this is not the case, the screen is from BMW but it does not maintain its aesthetics, in this case the screen is integrated and is not tactile although the restyling does have it.

  • The navigation system is normal and nothing worth mentioning about it.
  • The vehicle has a head up display that although it is not one of the best we have seen, it is useful and perfectly fulfills its purpose, in this case it is not a hologram but is projected on a glass.
  • The reversing camera, as in many other vehicles, does not come standard.
  • The optional sports upholstery is around 2,000 euros. 
  • The seats are sportier and more comfortable when it comes to taking a sportier ride. The seats are made of leather and Alcantara.
  • The interior is one of the Mini’s biggest drawbacks, much of it is made of plastic and only has a few leather accents.
  • The cabin is comfortable if we consider it’s 3.84 meters long and the width is surprising.

Although it is a 2 + 2 a person of 1.87 meters is the maximum acceptable in the rear seats. The steering wheel is sporty, small and comfortable, it has some large cams that have a good touch. On the steering wheel you can find many buttons which are very useful, in this way you do not take your eyes off the asphalt at any time. The infotainment has a sports function that allows you to know how many horses the car is offering you at that time, this function is useful if you take the car to the circuit, this is something that we would invite you to try if you had the opportunity.

One of the most important aspects for which motor lovers buy a car is that feeling that the car transmits to us when we drive it. As we have mentioned the Mini JCW is a powerful and light car, it has a hard suspension, good four-piston brakes at the front and a piston at the rear. The brakes allow this car to stop dead very quickly. The exhaust sounds very good and when you go down it backfires in a very pleasant way but not excessively high.

This car incorporates three driving modes, ECO, Normal and Sport.

In ECO driving mode the car is limited to half power and offers interactive games to meet fuel consumption standards. In ECO mode it behaves in a more docile way, the throttle is less aggressive and the car does not ask you to wax it. The Normal mode allows you to put all the power to it, although the steering is still somewhat softer than in Sport. You get the pure feeling with Sport mode, the car reacts faster, becomes more nervous and impulsive. In this mode, it delivers you to the last horse and the steering becomes harder as does the suspension, if you add the adjustable suspension option, which costs 500 euros. The gearbox changes faster and if you want you can put it in sequential mode and change yourself with the paddles. The traction control can be deactivated, and after having tried it, we can say that where the nose goes, the ass goes. One of the best features, is that weight / power ratio that applied to a car of this size, makes you feel like you are in a kart, with extraordinary agility and a brutal cornering.

Now, let’s talk about the price. The car with automatic transmission starts from 36,402 euros although the specification we tested was very well endowed and had all the extras, which amounts to the price of 47,000 euros.
There is no doubt that this Mini John Cooper Works is a great car, it drives spectacularly, it sounds very good for the in-line four-cylinder engine it has, we find the aesthetic really good as it is sporty but it still maintains that British elegance. But all in all, its price is excessive, there are extras such as the suspension and sports upholstery package that come basic since it is the second fastest car of the English brand and it has been designed to be driven fast.

As a conclusion, we must say that we have fallen in love with the car and it is amazing how close to the ground you feel, if it is true that it is not at the level of the Mercedes-Benz A35 or an Audi S3, but it is true that with all the extras, it is easily worth much less. Honestly this car has surprised us, it is easy to forgive the price once you get on it and drive it. We shall ask Mini to add an extra with better tires since these, sometimes can lack of grip. The improvement of the interior is also an essential aspect.

This is all about the Mini John Cooper Works, hopefully you liked it and enjoyed this extensive review. We liked it a lot and we hope to try it again in the future. That was it for this review, see you in the next one!

Source: av.carphotography

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