Based on first images captured by motor1.com, the JCW test mule appears nearly identical to the standard Cooper S, but distinguishes itself thanks to the concept’s massive rear wing affixed to the bootlid. While appearing aftermarket, the prototype also gets blue calipers, wider exhaust outlets and a rather dented metal strip underneath the front bonnet.
According to the publication, the prototype further hides what is underneath by featuring a conspicuous red box on the lower front airdam claimed to be sensor, by unspecified masking in front of the rear wheel and by the plastic wheel arch extensions. Like the previous GP that went out of production four years ago, the newcomer will likely incorporate materials such as carbon fibre to keep weight down, and come with sharper steering and a lowered ride height to up the sporty factor.
Up front, the GP will retain the regular JCW’s 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, but reported to produce as much as 224kW, which will see it improve on its sibling’s top speed of 246km/h and 0-100km/h in 6.3 seconds. Although it is sure that the six-speed manual gearbox would be retained, Mini could offer the seven-speed dual-clutch ‘box as an option for the first time, though remains purely speculative at present.
No word of a possible world debut as yet been made, but given the still early stages of development, don’t expect to see the GP debut till around 2020.