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Mini goes a little bit Country, a little bit Rock & Roll

18 January 2017

Mini has recently unveiled its second-generation Countryman. But, as you might have noticed, this is not any old Mini. It wears a John Cooper Works (JCW) jacket, and to top it off, it features the most powerful engine the marque has ever fitted to a road car.

The British outfit also boldly states that the JCW Countryman will take the Mini experience to a brand-new level. A 2.0-litre turbocharged engine lives under the bonnet and produces 170kW power at 5000r/min and 350Nm of torque at 1450 r/min. The engine will be mated as standard to a 6-speed manual gearbox which will surely make for a thrilling driving experience. An optional 8-speed Steptronic automatic gearbox will also be made available as an option that can be overridden with ‘flappy paddles’ located at the back of the steering wheel.

While the JCW is capable of a 0-100km/h sprint in just 6.5 seconds, and keep going to 234km/h, it’s capable of conserving each squirt of the injectors. Mini claims an average fuel consumption of just 7.4 litres per 100km for the manual gearbox, while the 8-speed auto will only sip an average of 6.9 litres per 100km.

During normal driving conditions, power is only sent to the front wheels, which is coupled to a familiar Dynamic Stability Control (DSC) system, also used on BMWs. This, according to the carmaker, is to reduce torque loss when power is sent to the rear wheels. When the system detects a loss of traction on a gravel road – or through a corner – it utilises an electro-hydraulically-controlled hang-on clutch to instantaneously send power to the rear wheels.

This is also the biggest JCW to ever roll off the production line. It’s 4.3m long, 1.82m wide and 1.56m high. This, says Mini, will translate into “significantly more generous” head, shoulder and leg-room.

The Mini JCW Countryman will officially be unveiled at the 2017 Shanghai Auto Show in April, and is likely to be launched later in the year.