It’s always exciting when we’re treated to a GP variant of MINI’s fantastic MINI Hatch JCW. Known for their unapologetic nature, the 2012 MINI John Cooper Works GP and 2006 MINI Cooper S with John Cooper Works Kit were praised by motoring journalists worldwide – the latter even taking part in evo’s Track Car of the Year 2013. Continuing the uncompromising history of the GP name, MINI have now unveiled an outrageous new MINI John Cooper Works GP Concept.
Possibly the most striking MINI to date, this new JCW GP Concept is significantly wider than the current MINI and features styling that you’d seldom usually see outside of a race track. Designed to promote ‘purity and emotional richness’ the front, rear and side skirts have seen a series of racing car inspired aesthetic changes that work to increase aerodynamic efficiency and promote the aggressive nature of this incredible JCW GP Concept.
Employing the use of lightweight materials such as carbon fibre, this eye-catching hatchback has been designed with track driving held to the same importance as on-road driving; to this end, MINI have even included little elements such as rain lights on the outer edges of the rear apron that are there to vastly improve visibility during wet races.
Complementing the increased width and aggressive GP body modifications, a large carbon fibre spoiler sits proudly at the back of the car. Seemingly larger than even the wing employed by the current JCW Challenge racing car, this spoiler serves as the perfect end to the racing car aesthetic.
As with all concept cars that we see from both BMW and MINI, this JCW GP is more than just a series of outrageous spoilers and wide arches – this is a car that is all about the little details. Half Union Jack motifs sit proudly on each of the LED rear lights, nodding to the MINI’s British origins, whilst the number ‘0059’ sits upon the aggressive wheel arches in celebration of the classic MINI’s 1959 birth year.
Continuing the pure racing car aesthetic of the JCW GP concept on the interior, the cabin has undergone almost an entire strip down. Featuring only the essentials, the interior is home to little more than a pair of low-mounted bucket seats with five-point harnesses, a GP racing wheel similar to the current JCW steering wheel and a simple instrument panel. Free of distraction, the driver is encouraged simply to focus on driving, with nothing but a digital instrument cluster and Head-Up Display placed within the driver’s eye-line.
Control over elements of JCW GP Concept, such as adjustment of the suspension settings, are completed on a familiar central TFT monitor that in this case features touch sensitive controls. Where digitalisation is king within the interior, important analogue controls like the emergency cut-off button can be found underneath the display – the iconic start/stop toggle switch of the current generation MINI once again sitting proudly in between these controls.
As with every MINI John Cooper Works GP, the rear seats have been removed in order to achieve the lightest weight possible. Where past iterations of JCW featured simply a rear strut-brace, the JCW GP Concept differs by employing a full roll cage that extends from the rear of the car and around the driver and passenger by way of door bars.
No performance figures have been released along with this fantastic concept car however, looking at previous GP iterations, it is safe to assume that the JCW GP Concept would see additional power on top of the current JCW’s 228bhp and reduced track times due to the car’s adjusted setup. We have to say that this concept has certainly got us very excited for what the future has in store for the MINI John Cooper Works GP. What are your thoughts? Let us know on Facebook.