Mini John Cooper Works GP set for Q2 local launch

Mini’s hard-edged John Cooper Works GP is set to arrive in Singapore at the end of the second quarter of 2020, following its South East Asian debut in Thailand on 22 April


If you like your Mini experience tuned up to the extreme, then you won’t have long to wait before the most hard-edged version, the John Cooper Works (JCW) GP, lands here.

The latest pocket rocket from Mini is scheduled to arrive in Singapore around the end of June, following its South East Asian debut in Thailand on 22 April.

Mini are still finalising details on pricing and allocation for Singapore, but Thailand has announced that it will receive 30 units, from a total of 3,000 worldwide, of the limited edition model. In Thailand, the retail price is 4.2 million Baht (about S$185,000). Expect local pricing to be slightly above that figure, after including taxes and duties.

It’s worth noting that the previous Mini JCW GP, also a limited edition model, was sold out in Singapore, so it would be no surprise if the same happens again.

For the uninitiated, the JCW GP is a lightened and sharper version of the already hardcore MINI JCW model. That means no rear seats, unique performance parts, and even more power than its regular JCW counterpart.

How much more? Try 75hp more. The GP’s 2.0-litre turbocharged engine puts out 306hp and 450Nm of torque, and the net result is a 0-100km/h sprint time of 5.2 seconds. Mini has also removed the electronic speed limiter, and so the GP can now achieve a top speed of 265km/h, up from 250km/h on the electrically-limited JCW.

The GP achieves its performance improvements through tweaking several components, such as its turbocharger, crankshaft, pistons, fuel injectors and oil sump.

It also gets a unique exhaust system that has been specifically developed for this GP model, and a new cooling system that includes two external coolant coolers, a larger expansion tank, a specially designed coolant module storage system, and even a separate cooling system for the eight-speed automatic transmission.

It’s more than just straight-line performance that’s been enhanced however. Mini has also widened the car’s track, and lowered the GP by 10mm over the regular JCW, for improved handling agility. There’s also a new sports brake system with 4-piston fixed caliper disc brakes on the front wheels and single-piston floating caliper brakes on the rear wheels.

In addition, the Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) gets a new ‘GP’ mode, that sits above the standard Sport Plus mode in terms of system intervention, and just below the bonkers ‘completely off’ mode that can now also be activated.

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On the outside, the Mini JCW GP can be identified through its bespoke Racing Grey metallic paintwork, the large rear roof spoiler, the redesigned front and rear aprons, the flared carbon fibre wheel arches that accommodate the car’s wider track, and the special 18-inch lightweight forged wheels.

In terms of performance metrics, the Mini JCW GP compares against the likes of the Mercedes-AMG A 35 and BMW M135i. But given its track-focused spirit, it’s probably more in-tune with cars such as the Renault Megane RS and Honda Civic Type R. Regardless, hot hatch aficionados will have one more reason to look forward to the end of Singapore’s extended circuit breaker period.

READ MORE: Want a Mini JCW experience but need more space and practicality? Then the Mini JCW Countryman is for you!

about the author

Ben Chia
CarBuyer's senior staff writer went out to explore the Great Big World, including a stint working in China (despite his limited Mandarin). Now he's back, ready to foist upon you his takes on everything good and wonderful about the automotive world.