Mini went in strong with its first fully-electric car, giving its less-than creatively named ‘Electric‘ 181bhp and 199lb ft of torque. That’s similar to the petrol-powered Cooper S, and even though it has more weight to punt around, the pokey powertrain still makes for an impressive 7.3-second 0-62mph time.
The BMW subsidiary wants to go much further than that, though. “Future Mini vehicle architectures will allow the extreme performance of the John Cooper Works brand to be experienced with electric powertrains as well as combustion engines,” it said in a press release, which was accompanied by photos of one of its development cars on the Nurburgring Nordschleife.
No technical details are provided, but we can clearly see that the shell of the 302bhp JCW GP has been used as a starting point for the concept in question. It’d likely need GP levels of power to match the performance of the standard, 231bhp JCW, we should think, to make up for the weight of its battery pack. It’s tricky to say at this stage whether Mini will go for front or all-wheel drive.
Before you panic, it sounds as though traditionally-powered JCWs will continue to be sold alongside electric version for some time. “John Cooper Works models with conventional combustion engines will still continue to have an important role to play, to make sure we’re addressing the wishes and needs of performance enthusiasts all around the world,” Mini brand boss Bernd Korber says.
As a reminder, Mini currently makes JCW versions of its core three-door hatch, the Convertible, Clubman and Countryman. We wouldn’t be surprised to see fast electric versions of all four eventually.
The question is: if you had the choice, would you go ICE or BEV for your JCW?