Matthew Jones12 May 2012

The fastest road-going Mini ever

TG reports back from the launch of the new John Cooper Works GP

New Mini JCW GP

So, this is the fastest road-going Mini ever built. As in ever. Ever ever ever. 

Want some numbers? You can't handle the numbers. Well, you probably can, but they're still rather impressive. The 2012 John Cooper Works GP has just lapped the Nurburgring Nordschleife in 8 minutes 23 seconds - that's nearly 19 seconds quicker than its 215bhp predecessor, first released in 2006.

So how, we hear you crow? Power, predominately. Mini's not telling us the exact numbers, but an indignant probe of its chief engineer at the car’s launch - held at the wonderful Mini United festival in France – didn't reveal much other than a confident look. 

See all the pictures of the new Mini John Cooper Works GP

As well as tinkering with the twin-scroll turbo-funded engine, the JCW GP is a bit slipperier. Stare in befuddled ambivalence at its large front and rear aprons, then marvel at the really rather cool new diffuser. The whole underbelly's also been smoothed to help with downforce. 

This is being described as a ‘track car for the road’, which also means a set of six-pot brakes on the front axle, and to help with adhesion it's got a set of Kumho tyres specifically developed for the car. 

Inside, you don't get much. There are two Recaro race seats and most of the finery common to a Mini's interior's been ripped out for lightness's sake. 

Want one? You'll have to be quick. Mini's only building 2000. No price details either, but we reckon you won’t get much change from £25,000. Anyone going to be putting in an order?

See all the pictures of the new Mini John Cooper Works GP


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