• Feb 21, 2006
[click above pic for larger, desktop wallpaper version]

The current generation MINI is getting a last hurrah in the form of the MINI GP, essentially a MINI Cooper S with the aftermarket John Cooper Works GP Kit installed at the factory. The fastest production MINI ever produced will greet the public at Geneva for the first time. With 218 hp and 180 ft-lbs. of torque, the MINI GP will claw and gnash its way to 60 in under 6.5 seconds and reach an impressive top speed of 146 mph.

Only 444 examples of this mad MINI will be sold for a price around £22,000 ($38,286 US). In addition to the power put out by the JCW kit, the MINI GP also benefits from a diet that shed 88 lbs. from its already supermodel slim weight. Gone, for instance, is the entire backseat, which has been replaced by a beefy strut brace. The sound deadening material is also history and some suspension bits were recast in aluminum, as well.

The MINI GP’s handsome looks come from special 18-inch light-alloy rims and a Thunder Blue/Pure Silver/Chili Red paint scheme (it’s the only one available). Aero tweaks can also be found that not only create a more urgent appearance, but also improve the car’s drag coefficient and downforce.

Tons more pics after the jump and BMW/MINI’s full press release.

'MINI GP' at Geneva Motor Show

02/21/2006
    
    The MINI Cooper S with John Cooper Works (JCW) GP Kit will make its first public viewing at the Geneva Motor Show. The fastest, most powerful production MINI ever will reach 62mph in under 6.5 seconds and achieve a top speed of 146mph. The GP has a power output of 218bhp, a stunning 136bhp per litre, and a maximum torque of 245Nm.

Only 2000 of this special production model will be built and 444 are bound for the UK from July onwards. The guide price is £22,000 which includes £10,000 worth of additional equipment if specified on a standard MINI Cooper S. Almost three-quarters of the UK allocation have already been ordered by MINI enthusiasts six months ahead of launch.

In the interests of power to weight ratio, the car weighs approximately 40 kilos less than a standard MINI Cooper S. This has been achieved by modifications to the chassis and engineering tweaks. The longitudinal control arms on the rear axle are now made of aluminium and the sound-deadening material has been taken out.

The entire rear seat bench has been removed. In its place is a very neat flat loading area that can be folded up in a Z-arrangement for easy access to two additional storage boxes.

Standard equipment includes: limited slip differential, Dynamic Stability Control, Recaro sports seats in Panther Black leather, single CD, air-conditioning and a multi-function steering wheel. The car also features JCW sports brakes, JCW sports suspension and exclusive low-profile tyres and 18-inch light-alloy rims.

The special edition will only be available in exclusive metallic paintwork called Thunder Blue combined with a Pure Silver roof and Chili Red door mirrors.

A new aerodynamics package has been added that significantly improves the car’s drag coefficient and downforce on both front and rear axles, enhancing the driving experience at high speeds. New highlights are the front and rear air dams, the extra low side-sills, and the underfloor cover, as well as a wing-shaped rear spoiler.

The ‘MINI GP’ will join the existing JCW range of aftermarket and production option kits. The first engine tuning kit was launched in 2003 as an aftermarket option, and over 10,000 have been sold worldwide since that date. From the end of 2005, the kit became available as an Oxford production line fit and a new aftermarket version was launched for the MINI Cooper S with automatic transmission.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 25 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      I'm not sure most making comments here own a mini. I've already ordered my MiniGP to replace my Mini Cooper S. Got to have something fast enough to stay away from those SUV tanks that the average American loves to drive and bitch about the price of gas. Go figure.
      • 7 Years Ago
      i actually have a GP mini !
      |And all you American bastards think there rubbish, not as if you have any good cars that isn't bangers! Bet you haven't even been in a GP mini let alone drive one
      And It's a bargain for £22,000 or $38,000. I fly down the motorway at 120mph and Round corners No car is better ! The speed it comes out of the corners with is astonishing. Although there are no back seats its practical i can put shopping on the part at the back of the car, and why you all against the wheels they are beautiful ! And in my opinion The red wing mirrors suit the car beautiful. And you can hear the supercharged engine just wailing away best sound !
      • 8 Years Ago
      I am in total agreement with Colin I think the GP will be a complete giant slayer! I used to have a Cooper S Works and it was totally manic but completely usable which is not something I could say about some of my other cars. I am jealous of Colin having ordered his GP I left it too late a despite what the press claims about only 3/4 of the UK allocation having been sold I cannot get one for love nor money! When I was in one dealer a woman was in checking up on her order and when I proclaimed that I wanted her car she said alright but it will cost you 45,000!!!!!!!!!!!!
      • 8 Years Ago
      now THOSE are some ugly wheels! AM I RITE?!?!11
      • 8 Years Ago
      #1 The US price hasn't been announced. Expect something definitely lower than a straight conversion of pounds to dollars seen here.

      #2 The above 6.5 seconds is referring to 0-62mph or 0-100kph. Also keep in mind BMW's 0-60 times are nortoriously slow. Most mags get about a half second lower than the published times.
      • 8 Years Ago
      or a shelby gt500, and that damn mini would never keep up
      • 8 Years Ago
      where to order this car?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Kinda worthless without the back seat. 0-60 in 6.5 seconds is pitiful as well. I like minis, they look pretty good but with the performance to price to functionality factored in, this is a bad idea. There are a lot better 2-seaters for the price or performance and there are a lot better 4-door 5-seaters for the price and performance so whats the point?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Colin, i think you hit the nail on the head. to everyone who hasnt been behind the wheel of a cooper s, dont knock it till you try rocking it through LA traffic. I'm dropping my 330i for a cooper im reworking through hamann. for $40 grand theres nothing that will be as much fun and as unique, besides i've had one as a loner for half my beemers life and am just stoked to build my own. Im kinda mad i ordered mine before the GP came out. the skirt kit is dope but what the f$#^% are those wheel and that wing?! its a little fast and furious for the psudo eurotrash like me.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I really like Minis, but for $38k I'd get myself a proper car.
      • 8 Years Ago
      You Americans are funny. I'll grant that the Mini probably isn't relevant in the US outside of a city, but until you've hammered a Mini on twisty European roads, don't knock it. I've had a couple of Elises, Caterhams, and a few more exotic bits of kit. I'm not saying that I'd have a Mini GP over and Exige or an Elise - but around town, and certainly on Irish roads, there's little to compare with how much fun a properly sorted Mini is to drive. Plus it looks cute, and I can buy it for myself, but actually give it to the girlfriend. Much as I admire them, I wouldn't be seen dead in an Evo or a Subaru, but the Mini is actually in a lot of ways just like these things to drive - low inertia, really chuckable and with great turn-in. Only in a Mini, you can do it all without the obligatory baseball cap. As for the 0-60 time of only 6.5 - since when was that a relevant measure of a car's real-world performance? Once the supercharger is spooled up, the JCW Cooper Ss have real pull, and feel seriously quick. Added to the fact that you hardly ever have to brake hard, and that the car carries massive speed into and out of corners, in most situations, you find ourself in a car substantially quicker than everything around you.

      On pricing - I have a Cooper, I think the GP is a bargain, and I ordered mine 6 months ago. Can't wait.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Also, the red mirrors were a bad decision.
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