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Mini John Cooper Works GP 2020 tackles Nürburgring

Mini’s new-generation JCW GP has lapped the Nürburgring Northern Loop in under eight minutes.

Mini’s hard-charging John Cooper Works GP has been seen lapping the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit this week, albeit with a camouflage livery, giving racing fans a first glimpse at the new-generation hot hatch.

According to Mini, the new JCW GP has run the Green Hell in under eight minutes – besting its predecessor by at least 23 seconds.

Despite the incognito colour scheme, official images reveal many details of the hardcore hatchback, including its large frontal air intakes, wide guards, unique light alloy wheels and distinctive roof spoiler.

The vehicle is powered by the same 220kW 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine as featured in the BMW X2 M35i, making it the most powerful Mini ever produced.

The production version will go on sale in 2020, and will be limited to just 3000 units worldwide.

Like the first- and second-generation JCW GPs, the new model is expected to follow the same formula with significant weight reduction measures, a mechanical limited-slip differential, and a track-focused chassis and suspension tune.

The British hot-hatch is distinguished by its widened stance and large roof spoiler. The British hot-hatch is distinguished by its widened stance and large roof spoiler.

With a sub-eight minute Nürburgring lap time, the new Mini JCW GP is approaching times set by key rivals like the Honda Civic Type R, and the top-spec Renault Megane RS.

In 2017, the Civic Type R was crowned the fastest front-wheel-drive production vehicle around the ‘Ring with a time of seven minutes and 43.8 seconds, however, it was later dethroned by the Renault Megane RS Trophy-R, which ran the 30 kilometre circuit in seven minutes and 40.1 seconds.

Would you like to see the hardcore Mini JCW GP arrive in Australia? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below.