The new 2020 Mini John Cooper Works GP is starting to come to light as Mini is starting to leak small details and teasers. You will notice the pictures that are posted are of the 2017 Concept car, but apparently the production car should not bee to different. The limited-edition Hardtop will be the third GP special that Mini has produced—the first-generation GP was released in 2006, while the second-gen GP came out in 2012—and Mini says that it will be the fastest and most powerful car the brand has ever released. The new GP will be powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four making more than 300 horsepower, but Mini has yet to say what transmission will pair with the engine. The standard Hardtop JCW model, which makes 228 horses, can be paired with a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission. Like the regular JCW, the GP will send all of its might through the front wheels, which will make it one of if not the most powerful front-wheel-drive cars on the market, alongside the Honda Civic Type R. Mini makes a point to mention the previous-gen GP’s Nürburgring lap time of 8:23, leading us to believe it will set an official time with the new model (it would have to beat the Type R’s time of 7:43.8 to take the FWD lap record).
Should be interesting to see how much of the concept Mini passes on to the production car and if it actually ends up beating the current FWD record held by the Type R. From the photos that have been released so far it seems that Mini isn’t playing around, from the large wheels, to the huge rear spoiler that is multi tiered and split down the middle, and the center exhaust it definitely seems to play the part. I am curious to see how it compares in power to the predicted numbers and the current crop of hot hatches.
Mini says the GP will have “rigorously defined aerodynamic properties,” so a new front bumper, lower side skirts, and larger, finlike fender flares (like those on the concept) are all likely. The new GP will also get a unique suspension tune and larger brakes, and it should be lighter than the standard car. Both previous GPs did away with the rear seats in favor of a rear shock-tower brace, and the new one should continue the tradition.
The JCW GP will be revealed next month at the Geneva auto show. Just 3000 will be built for worldwide consumption—1000 more than both previous GPs—and the sticker shock should be quite substantial. The second-gen GP was $39,950, nearly 10 grand more than a regular JCW Hardtop, so with the current JCW priced from $32,750, we bet this third-gen GP will be at least $45K. At that price, about six grand more than the Civic Type R it sure better outperform it. At this stage in the game the information is quite sparse so I will update this article as more info becomes available.