The power output of Mini's John Cooper Works continues to grow. The first "modern" JCW Cooper was released in 2002, and made do with 200 hp (150 kW), which became 211 hp (155 kW) when the R56 Cooper was released. For the latest John Cooper Works, Mini has managed to serve up 231 hp (172 kW), making it the brand's most powerful car ever.
Powering the new JCW is a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine, which backs up its 231 hp (172 kW) with 320 Nm of torque, for punchy in-gear performance. Mini claims the extra torque helps make the new engine more flexible than the one it replaces, allowing it to surge from 50 to 75 mph (80 - 121 km/h), 10 percent faster than the outgoing model. It will also get to 62 mph (100 km/h) in just 6.3 seconds, or 6.1 if you spec an automatic gearbox, making it quicker than last year's John Cooper Works GP.
As well as being quicker, the new JCW Cooper is also more economical than the car it replaces. Mini claims the manual car will return 6.7 l/100 km (35 mpg) on the combined drive cycle, with CO2 emissions of just 155 g/km.
To deliver the sharp handling for which Mini is renowned, the latest Cooper JCW has been fitted with stiffer suspension and a sharper steering setup, as well as four-piston Brembo brakes that hide behind 17-inch lightweight John Cooper Works wheels. The JCW is also fitted with a more aggressive bodykit designed to channel plenty of air to the John Cooper Works' uprated engine.
Putting the extra power down is an electronically controlled front differential, with stability and traction control to help keep things in check.
Although John Cooper Works is all about performance, the car is still a Mini, so it carries the same focus on style that is present in the rest of the Mini range. Eighteen-inch wheels are optional on the JCW Mini, and a larger spoiler sits atop the car's bootlid, complementing its side skirts and sporty rear bumper.
The new John Cooper Works is also available with an extensive list of optional extras, including a heads up display and Harmon/Kardon audio.
The new Mini John Cooper Works will debut at the 2015 Detroit Motor Show. Mini is yet to announce pricing.