2021 MINI Countryman JCW Packs A Punch

This maxi-MINI has a hot-hatch rivalling 306 hp and 450 Nm of torque. 

Crossovers lately have been getting into the hot hatch game, and the latest one to enter the field is this maxi-MINI, the new 2021 MINI Countryman John Cooper Works (JCW). 

For those out of the loop, JCW the performance arm of MINI, much like M is to BMW or RS is to Audi. Being the performance oriented Countryman, this new (large) MINI crossover outputs a headline grabbing 306 hp and a very generous 450 Nm of torque. The hot hatch rivalling figures translates to a 0 – 100km/h time of 5.1 seconds. 

These healthy power figures come courtesy of a highly tweaked turbocharged TwinPower four cylinder mated to an 8-speed Steptronic gearbox driving all four wheels, courtesy to the standard All4 four wheel drive system. 

Improved performance thanks to uprated brakes with 4 piston Brembos up front and suspension that MINI tout to be ‘designed using the race track expertise of John Cooper Works’. In other words, rock hard for daily driving. 

On the outside of this enlarged MINI, the usual MINI aesthetics remains. Including prominent reminders of the Mini’s (past) Britishness, with the redesigned Union Jack taillights. New adaptive LED headlights also feature on this Countryman, along with some other JCW specific trim like the 18 inch JCW alloys, enlarged tailpipes and gloss black exterior accents, to make it stand out from the crowd. 

However as much difference as the JCW appearance is, there is no hiding the fact that the Countryman is just a swollen MINI. And to some, not a particularly pretty one. 

Continuing onto the interior, MINI claims that this 5 seater crossover has a ‘sports car flair’, but it is still unmistakably a MINI with its large central dash design. The German influence on this supposedly British car is showing though, because nearly everything desirable is an optional extra, like the 5 inch digital instrument display and the upgraded 8.8 inch touchscreen infotainment system.

Happily though, the Countryman JCW does come with a standard install SIM card, so that the MINI is always online and connected to the world. That being said, more features like MINI Navigation Plus can be unlocked via the options menu on the order form of course. 

The MINI Countryman JCW is launching in November 2020. To those who want a practical hot MINI, this is the perfect car for you. But to anyone not suckered into the MINI badge, there are other better alternatives out there. 

More information can be found in the press release below: 

Munich: Irresistible character matured on the race track. 

The new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman (combined fuel consumption: 7.3 – 6.9 l/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 166 – 156 g/km, preliminary figures) brings its qualities to bear both on the road and on unpaved terrain. The outstanding power of its 225 kW/306 hp 4-cylinder turbocharged engine is transferred to the road via an 8-speed Steptronic Sport transmission and ALL4 all-wheel drive as standard – a combination that guarantees extreme performance on all types of surface. The extreme driving pleasure package is rounded off by suspension technology featuring the John Cooper Works racing know-how. Modified design, refined equipment and additional options bring out the sporty and exclusive character of the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman to the full.

Engine power meets versatility: The new high-performance athlete for the premium compact segment occupies the top position in both disciplines of the British premium brand’s model range. It offers unbridled power and plenty of room for experiencing the thrill of racing in everyday driving. In addition, the expressive exterior has now been refined and fresh accents have been added to the high-quality interior. The new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman will be launched in November 2020.

With four doors and a large tailgate, five full-size seats, a variable-use interior and a luggage compartment volume that can be expanded up to 1 390 litres, the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman can not only master daily transport tasks in city traffic, but also meet all comfort demands on longer journeys. The most powerful engine ever used in a standard MINI, the intelligently controlled all-wheel drive and the differential lock on the front wheels integrated into the 8-speed Steptronic transmission ensure superior performance at all times.

Equipped with specific modifications to the basic engine, advanced MINI TwinPower Turbo technology and an independent cooling system, the drive unit impresses not only with its maximum output of 225 kW/306 hp, but also with its maximum torque of 450 Nm. The spontaneous power delivery, which is sustained into high load ranges, enables the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman to accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in 5.1 seconds (preliminary figure). Speed burst manoeuvres are accompanied by the striking sound of the model-specific sport exhaust system. The tailpipes with an enlarged diameter of 95 mm are real eye-catchers, too.

In order to ensure not only hallmark agility, but also particularly high steering precision and handling that can be masterfully controlled even in highly dynamic driving situations, the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman features a body structure and a connection with the chassis, which is characterised by high rigidity. In addition to model-specifically modified components, the chassis also features suspension and damping features refined with racing expertise, DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) and electromechanical steering. As an option, the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman can be equipped with an adaptive chassis. Its standard equipment includes a sports brake system with 4-piston fixed caliper disc brakes on the front wheels and single-piston floating-caliper disc brakes on the rear wheels, as well as 18-inch John Cooper Works light-alloy wheels with brake callipers painted in Chili Red.

The aerodynamically optimised exterior features also contribute to the superior performance of this versatile athlete. The powerful charisma of the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman is now even more intensively emphasised with the redesign of the radiator grille. The standard LED headlights and the rear lights have been newly designed. At the front, the high-quality lighting technology is now even more recognisable, while at the back the Union Jack light design is an irresistible eye-catcher. The Adaptive LED headlamps with variable light distribution and matrix function for the high beam lights are optionally available. The exterior colours White Silver metallic and Sage Green metallic as well as the option Piano Black Exterior are new. Here, the headlamp surrounds, rear lights and radiator grille are finished in high-gloss black instead of chrome, as are the door handles and the model lettering on the luggage compartment lid.

The interior also features new accents. The sports car flair of the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman is now combined even more extensively with a modern premium ambience. The digital instrument display behind the steering wheel with a diameter of 5.0 inches is a new optional equipment component. The optional Connected Media equipment in the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman also includes an 8.8-inch colour display with touchscreen function in the characteristic central instrument panel, which now features even higher quality design. In its new version, it has a bezel and touch-sensitive control panels with high-gloss Piano Black surfaces.

Thanks to a SIM card installed as standard, the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman is “always online”. This enables the use of numerous digital services. The MINI Navigation Plus option also provides real-time traffic data, the MINI Online Internet Portal, Apple CarPlay preparation and the seamless integration of the Amazon Alexa voice assistant among other things.

Joshua Chin

Automotive journalist. Professional work on and Personal writing found at Instagram: @driveeveryday

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