Cooper S Works revives memories of classic hot rods

Most powerful Mini ever sports 231hp engine

Mini has launched its most powerful car ever. The new Cooper S Works is based on the existing 190hp Cooper S, but its 2.0-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder engine has been tweaked to produce a far more robust 231hp and 320Nm of torque.

With a manual gearbox, the Cooper S Works can sprint to 100kmh in just 6.3 seconds, but it’s even quicker when fitted with the optional six-speed Steptronic automatic gearbox as that version also comes with electronic “launch control” – spitting the Mini to 100kmh in just 6.1secs.

Impressively though, for all its performance, the automatic Cooper S Works has CO2 emissions of just 133g/km, meaning you can tax the most mental Mini yet for a mere €280 a year. The manual emits a rather less impressive 155g/km. It claims full consumption is between 42mpg and 49mpg, depending on specification.

Much of the car is bespoke – the engine’s turbocharger is new and bigger, needing bigger, wider front cooling ducts. The exhaust is freer flowing and with what Mini refers to as “a rich racing-inspired sound” .



On the suspension front, the single-joint spring strut front axle and multi-link rear axle have been completely retuned and the standard 17" alloys are lighter than normal. Equally special are the brakes – massive 330mm discs developed for the car by Brembo.

There are also optional adaptive dampers and a torque-steer compensation system which should help hold you in a straight line when giving it the beans .

The Cooper S Works manual costs from €36,180 or €36,911 for the automatic.

Neil Briscoe

Neil Briscoe

Neil Briscoe, a contributor to The Irish Times, specialises in motoring