It's been two years since the debut of Mini's Countryman crossover. In that time, the general public has indeed warmed to the idea of a big Mini – we grew to rather like it during our long-term test – and for 2013, a few small, thoughtful updates are on tap for the brand's range-topper.
There was a fair bit of hullabaloo two years ago when Mini announced a return to the World Rally Championship for this season, but the road to making that happen has been as rocky as a gravel stage. It spent 2011 developing its JCW Countryman WRC challenger, changing its mind about how it wanted to work with Prodrive, dumped a driver due to budget issues, then registering its entry after the deadline had passed in a ploy that might or might not have been a protest aimed at the WRC promoter.
If the 2013 Mini John Cooper Works Countryman gets you all hot and bothered, you're in luck. Mini has just released 191 high-resolution images of its largest JCW offering, sporting its signature black paint job complete with contrasting red stripes, mirrors and roof. We're sure it'll be a total hoot to drive.