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MINI John Cooper Works E PROtotype previews electric hot hatch

MINI’s truly hot electric Cooper will be previewed at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed

It was only a matter of time until MINI’s hot John Cooper Works models swapped petrol power for electric, and with the launch of the all-new generation it seems like now is the time. Leading up to the 2024 Goodwood Festival of Speed, MINI has announced it’ll be showing off its new John Cooper Works E PROtoype at the iconic event. 

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The forthcoming hot EV will draw its basis from the all-new MINI Cooper SE that’s only just now reaching customers. This model, co-developed with some help from Great Wall Motors in China, is completely different under the skin to the also new petrol-powered MINI Cooper, with an EV native chassis and front-mounted electric motor.

This means we expect it to feature the same 54kWh battery pack mounted low in the chassis, with an electric motor mounted on the front axle. In the current production model, this already produces 215bhp, but for the next JCW we’re expecting this to grow – and potentially by a large margin. 

That’s because in a conversation with MINI’s engineers, there has been some suggestion this new platform is capable of supporting a dual-motor setup, making it technically feasible for a significantly more powerful all-wheel drive MINI to be developed. Whether this is the model to feature the high-end powertrain, however, we won’t know – until we get a peek under the prototype’s rear axle at the festival this year. 

As well as an uprated powertrain, the new JCW E should also pick up lots of chassis tweaks including wider wheels and tyres, larger brakes and a stiffer suspension setup. As the Cooper SE is already a relatively heavy beast at over 1,700kg, we don’t expect the new JCW to be quite as light-footed as previous generations, but thanks to clever tuning we suspect it’ll still be a fun car to drive. 

More information will no doubt be ready for the prototype’s dynamic debut at this year’s Festival of Speed, before the car’s eventual reveal later this year or early next. 

Plenty of speed and zero emissions, these are the fastest electric cars in the world...

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Senior staff writer

Senior staff writer at Auto Express, Jordan joined the team after six years at evo magazine where he specialised in news and reviews of cars at the high performance end of the car market. 

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