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 Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand

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mjnewham
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PostSubject: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 00:00


Sources at Car and Driver are saying that MINI chief and former BMW M division boss, Dr. Kay Segler, has very real aspirations to finally turn the John Cooper Works into the stand-alone, performance skunkworks that frankly, we’ve always wanted it to be. We’ve heard this from MINI before, but with Dr. Kay at the helm, will the dream finally come true? What could this mean for future JCW MINI models? Details after the break.

First of all, Dr. Kay wants to push JCW beyond packages and accessories and produce stand-alone MINI JCW models — just like BMW’s M cars.


Once the JCW Countryman arrives, MINI will offer John Cooper Works packages for all of its models, but Segler wants to further differentiate JCW products in the future. This means that cars wouldn’t so much be equipped with the John Cooper Works package, but rather positioned as standalone models.

Mini already considers the standard JCW powerplant—a turbocharged 1.6-liter four making at least 208 hp—a “unique” engine, and not a standard Cooper S mill with more boost. But we interpret Segler’s remarks to mean that the John Cooper Works engine will come in for additional work in the future; that could mean it will get some unique internals, or that the displacement will be increased. Segler’s sentiments also suggest that more hard-core, limited-edition models like the upcoming new-gen MINI GP could be produced.

Could the next generation MINI GP be the first in a whole generation of stand-alone JCW cars? That’s a thrilling prospect to say the least. But if the John Cooper Works does start producing independent models, will any of us mere mortals be able to afford one?


Even though Minis have a real penchant for getting absurdly expensive with options and accessories—see our $46,244, ex-long-term JCW convertible as a prime example—Segler says the company will be careful about pricing future John Cooper Works offerings. Take a note from the relatively reasonable pricing of the BMW 1-series M and M3 GTS, we’re told. Considering that the 1-series M was something of a bargain at $47,010, that’s encouraging.

That’s highly encouraging. What good is a line of halo cars if they can only sell a handful? But perhaps the best thing that would come from a more dedicated JCW would be cars that much more highly tuned for performance. If past MINI models are the guidepost, two examples come to mind. The 2006 JCW GP, and the JCW version of the new MINI Coupé (which was designed as the “default” version of the car). Both cars are examples of MINIs that have been developed with a lot of focus. The result in both cases is a car with that little bit more — that little extra bit of feel, performance and refinement. If JCW gets to package each of its models this way, the result is likely to be really, really good.

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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 08:03

That sounds great! Would be cool if they have a place next to the ring too! Like M does!
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 10:19

Always wanted a M3 but the price & runnings costs have put me off!!

But, this could be tempting but fear the price will still be off putting to most unless they ditch the refinements!!

So what's left if they do that = GP Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 15:59

This sounds like an excuse to make them even more expensive.
I find it strange that they already consider the JCW engine to be unique, my understanding was it was the same basic engine with upgraded compinents such as airbox/injectors/ turbo etc.
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 18:39

I do think the JCW should have something to distinguish it from an s with a body kit. A badge isn't exactly enough!
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 21:02

Personally I would by one tomorrow as long as it is an auto... (disabled with dodgy left ankle) and I am keeping everything crossed that an auto is on its way...
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   27th January 2012, 23:19

Must admit I'd be wanting an auto too. Until then I'll stick with my r53 JCW auto!
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   28th January 2012, 00:27

They need to make the auto box better before I would consider one. the changes wernt fast enough for me when I drove the coupe. And I would want normal flappy paddles. Not the stupid up and down on both paddles they have now.
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   28th January 2012, 00:38

The paddles certainly are ridiculous, although they're not bad when you get used to it. I find the gearstick to be irritating with pressing it forward being down and backward being up?! Makes no logical sense and its the only auto I can think that works that way. Plus sport mode is towards you rather than away?!

Changes aren't too bad once its learnt how you drive. Not as quick as they could be but they're not too bad! Having said that I tend to just put it in D and forget about it!
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   10th February 2012, 10:33

Just to add my tuppence worth, I did own a BMW-M3, possibly the worst (and most expensive) car I've ever had. The SMG (Sequential Manual Geabox) was the worst auto ever. Imagine coming up to a roundabout in 4th, you see a nice gap and flip the gearstick fwd to drop a gear and give more oomph to get into the nice gap. Unfortunately the M3 internals decide the revs are too low and automatically switch you to 2nd, but you've already flipped the stick to drop a gear so it drops you into 1st, when you were expecting 3rd. A Truly nasty designed gearbox, and very lumpy when it changed gear too, you'd get a lurch as it swopped cogs about 2 seconds after you had decided to change gear, so you'd have to time coming off the accelerator well after selecting a change. Also I paid for loads of extras, and when it came to trading it in after it had became too much to keep putting up with, nice BMW said they couldn't take into account all the extras on it, they'd only give the base trade in value. Basically a 6 month old M3, cost about £38k traded in for £28k.
Still I have a JCW now, thinking of trading it in for a WC50.
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   10th February 2012, 10:40

I bet that M3 was fun in the wet - not - if it dropped gears at awkward moments.
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   10th February 2012, 13:52

It was a while ago Phil, 1998/99 I think, but fun isn't something I remember about it. I guess it sounded nice though, especially when you put your foot down in 1st thinking it was 3rd, Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   10th February 2012, 15:52

When you did that in the wet was the noise coming from outside the car or inside? Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Rumor: JCW May Finally Become MINI’s True M Brand   10th February 2012, 17:36

I was talking about from outside the car but on reflection the sound inside the car was quite colourful

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