The inclusion of the 2017 MINI Clubman John Cooper Works mannequin on this yr’s Lightning Lap listing did take us unexpectedly. To be trustworthy, we don’t actually know why the fellows from Automotive and Driver determined it will have the ability to sustain with the remainder of the vehicles in its class however nonetheless, it was attention-grabbing to see it go at it on the observe, a spot the place in all probability no one besides journalists would ever consider taking the Clubman, even in JCW guise.
On paper, the six-door Brit does appear to be fairly quick off the road. Below its hood hides a B48 2-liter Four-cylinder modular engine making 231 PS and as much as 350 Nm (258 lb-ft) of torque. That’s despatched to all 4 corners of the automotive by way of the usual ALL4 clever all-wheel drive system due to an Aisin-sourced Eight-speed gearbox. The automotive does deal with its 1.5-ton weight properly however you’ll be able to discover loads of physique roll, particularly when taking tight corners in a hasty vogue.
And that’s precisely what the fellows from Automotive and Driver did, squeezing each little bit of efficiency out of the poor MINI on the Virginia Worldwide Raceway. That is additionally fairly an advanced and demanding observe. Ultimately, the John Cooper Works Clubman completed its run round VIR in three:16 flat, a lap time that places it Eight seconds behind the BMW M240i, Four.5 seconds behind the Subaru WRX with the Efficiency Bundle and simply zero.6 seconds behind the Hardtop.
As a matter of reality, essentially the most shocking factor about its lap time is that the MINI JCW Hardtop is simply zero.6 seconds sooner. Contemplating how a lot lighter it’s, one thing positively doesn’t appear proper right here and we’re moderately curious to seek out out what. Fact be advised, we don’t know if the lap instances had been set by the identical driver and that would make up for lots of this confusion.