Anton Andres / Mini | September 06, 2017 13:35
Mini John Cooper Works gets the race car treatment with the GP concept
The Mini John Cooper Works might just get a track-oriented version. The British automaker has previewed the Mini John Cooper Works GP and it is likely that it may reach production in due time. Lighter and stripped out, Mini says this concept is an ode to the 1967 Monte Carlo Rally winning car.
For this concept, it retains the body of the standard John Cooper Works but features air deflectors for added high-speed stability. These deflectors also form the more aggressive front chin plus a splitter that extends to the out corners of the car. Other changes to the front fascia are the orange highlights within the headlight and the grill, plus the hood gets a 'power buldge', hinting a power upgrade.
Large air channels are also seen on the rear quarter panels, further emphasizing the focus on aerodynamics. Lower down its flanks is a carbon fiber side skirt, giving the concept a more aggressive profile. Slimmer side mirrors are present and it rides on 19-inch lightweight alloy wheels. Like the front, the sides feature orange highlights plus the 0059 markings on the fender marks the Mini's birth year of 1959.
The air panels from the sides merge to form the bumper and a large wing dominates the rear of the car. A bold Mini typeface is seen on the tailgate and a Union Jack pattern is used for the tail light. A bumper diffuser adds more aero enhancements for the rear. Mini claims that the deflectors and wings improve visibility in wet conditions.
Inside, it is stripped out meaning there are no rear seats, carpeting, or even interior panels except for the door cards. Instead, there is a roll cage joined with a pair of low-mounted
bucket seats with five-point belts. The instrument panel has also been redesigned to suit the racy nature of the concept. Gearshifts are courtesy of paddles on the steering wheel, similar to the ones used in the old World Rally Championship car.
Mini did not mention other enhancements as this is still a concept. Should it reach production, expect stiffened springs and dampers, along with uprated brakes. A slight power upgrade is to be expected as well. It is not the first time Mini has used the GP tag on their cars. First applied to the 2006 Cooper S, that model was also a track-focused model and had a limited run of less than 500 cars. It was then followed up in the next generation model in 2012, sticking to the principles of its predecessor.