The JCW Countryman is the first performance model of the range to come with Mini ALL4 all-wheel drive. Power comes from a newly developed four-cylinder, turbocharged 1.6-litre engine with 160 kW/280Nm (300Nm with overboost).
It's the most powerful drive unit in the Mini range, featuring construction principles and materials adapted specially from race-trim cars. There's a combination of twin-scroll turbocharger, petrol direct injection and fully variable valve management based on the BMW Group's Valvetronic technology.
It gives the JCW Countryman acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.0 seconds and stand-out efficiency in this output class. Mini also uses plenty of its ‘Minimalism’ fuel saving technology including brake energy regeneration, gear shift indicator, auto start-stop function and electric power steering.
A six-speed manual gearbox is standard with a six-speed auto optional. It has steering wheel shift paddles. Other standard kit includes a sports exhaust that produces a stirring soundtrack and a Sport button that tweaks the engine's responses and vocal character, the power assistance provided by the steering and the shift dynamics of the optional automatic gearbox.
Power distribution is varied seamlessly between the front and rear axles by an electromagnetic centre differential positioned directly on the final drive. A range of electronic dynamic controls is fitted. The JCW model has a sports suspension with firmly tuned springs and dampers, strengthened anti-roll bars and a 10-millimetre drop in ride height; powerful brakes with red calipers and extra-lightweight 18-inch twin spoke alloy wheels optional to 19s.
Inside it gets a JCW cockpit with sports seats, sports steering wheel, interior trim strips in piano black, anthracite-coloured roof liner, dark speedometer and rev counter dials and John Cooper Works door sills.