According to a report on Car Magazine, an all-electric Mini JCW could be in the making with a debut planned mid-decade. While Mini teased a camouflaged prototype of the JCW without exhausts, and with the caption “Feels like it is time for more boost” in March this year, hinting that it was ready to launch an electric JCW, Car Magazine reports of an internal debate at Mini whether to throw a last hurrah of the performance hatch with an exhaust or embrace the move to electricity.
The publication spoke to Bernd Körber, Head of Mini, who said the brand could kick off a “truly radical” project before entering the electric era. Mini plans to be all-electric by the early 2030s, and the parent BMW Group announced that by 2023 it will have at least one EV in 90 per cent of its segments and expects fully-electric vehicles to account for at least 50 per cent of its global sales in 2030. The fully-electric MINI Cooper SE alone already accounts for about 20 per cent of Mini brand sales.
Mini JCW Electric specifications
According to Car Magazine’s sources, the 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine in the Mini GP, rated at 302 hp, has nearly reached its limit in terms of performance enhancements. Hence, this is another reason for Mini to look at the electrified route for its performance hatchback, as an electric Mini JCW GT could manage 350 to 400 hp.
With the BMW i4, engineers of the group have proved that they can re-imagine an existing ICE platform for electric mobility, as the sedan is based on a modified version of the CLAR platform underpinning the 3 and 4 Series. Similarly, an electric Mini JCW could use the FAAR (BMW Group’s front-wheel drive architecture) designed from the ground up to be compatible with internal combustion engines, plug-in hybrids, and all-electric, similar to the upcoming BMW iX1. In contrast, future generations in the second half of the decade could see the BMW Neue Klasse (intended to replace the UKL and CLAR with an advanced 800V system architecture).
According to the report from Car Magazine, to keep the weight in check, the electric Mini JCW could feature modest 40-60 kWh batteries with 190-250 miles (304-400 km) of range and a fast-charging 400V system.
The coming year should reveal Mini’s strategy for its performance JCW division.
Featured Image – Mini