Mini John Cooper Works GP: the design

Production Cars 19 May 2020
Mini John Cooper Works GP: the design

An overview of the design of the new MINI John Cooper Works GP, a limited edition model inspired by the brand’s racing heritage.


The MINI John Cooper Works GP follows on from the likewise limited-edition John Cooper Works GP small series of 2013 and 2006.

Mini John Cooper Works GP Design Sketch Render

Exterior Design

The flat front section with its wide track, large front apron, flared wheel arches and a rear wing visible even from the front instantly conveys uncompromising dynamic performance.

Mini John Cooper Works GP

Classic MINI icons such as the elliptical headlights and the hexagonal radiator grille ensure a clear-cut sense of identity and high recognition value. At the same time, characteristic John Cooper Works elements such as the hood scoop in the bonnet and the hexagonal honeycomb grille with GP logo in the radiator grille underscore the sporty perception of the front.

Mini John Cooper Works GP Design Sketch Render

The side view of the MINI John Cooper Works GP reveals the sportiest MINI silhouette to date. The interplay between the narrowing window area and the rising shoulder line traces a wedge shape at the side that gives the impression of acceleration even when the car is stationary.

Below this, voluminous surfaces form a powerful vehicle corpus. The large front apron and large roof spoiler give the side view maximum sporty flair as well as ensuring aerodynamic optimum performance. The exterior paint finish Racing Grey metallic alternates between light grey and blue-violet, creating a powerful sense of depth, while the roof and mirror caps are finished in Melting Silver.

Mini John Cooper Works GP

All typical chrome elements at the front, side and rear such as MINI logos, door handles, fuel filler cap, side scuttle and headlight surrounds are finished in high-gloss black in this small-scale series.

The focus on technology and performance is further emphasised by coloured accentuations in high-gloss Chili Red and matt Rosso metallic.

The use of lightweight materials such as carbon fibre optimises the power-to-weight ratio, while the highly optimised axle load distribution promises the hallmark MINI go-kart feeling.

The  highlight in the side view are the attached wheel arch covers – so-called spats – which are made of carbon fibre. Elaborately hand-crafted recycled carbon fleece from the Landshut plant is used here. For the first time, the carbon fibre fabric is directly visible and showcased by means of black hexagon stitching. Meanwhile the numbering in the front spat shows the small-series production number.

Mini John Cooper Works GP Wheel detail

The 18” lightweight forged wheels in bi-colour design interpret the striking four-spoke theme of the MINI John Cooper Works GP in filigree style. It is the lightest 18” forged wheel ever to feature in the MINI, making a significant contribution to weight reduction.

Mini John Cooper Works GP Design Sketch Render

The rear section echoes the distinctive front and side design. The expressive roof spoiler is not only a statement in sporty styling: its shape also ensures optimum downforce and fits in perfectly with the geometry.

The same goes for the air diffusers and air ducting surfaces in the apron. Prominently placed at the centre of the lower rear area, the classic double tailpipe embodies the John Cooper Works DNA. The bright stainless steel double tailpipes are manufactured with the largest possible diameter and protrude powerfully and puristically from the diffuser.

Interior Design

Mini John Cooper Works GP Interior Design Sketch Render

The interior of the MINI John Cooper Works GP combines purist sporty flair with powerful colour accentuations.

Mini John Cooper Works GP Interior Design Sketch Render Steering Wheel

The dark colour and material concept creates a reduced, sporty basic mood, with high-quality, deliberately coloured details at selected points. In the driver area, the new free-standing digital instrument cluster on the steering column puts the relevant information in the driver’s field of vision as required by the situation at hand.

3D printing

The latest production techniques such as 3D printing round off the special interior experience. A striking highlight from the driver’s perspective are the aluminium shift paddles on the sports steering wheel – manufactured using 3D printing.

They echo the hexagonal theme from the exterior in the form of filigree breakthroughs. The shift paddles are a prominent element in the interior of the MINI John Cooper Works GP in terms of both appearance and new improved haptics and are featured in this form for the first time in a MINI.

Another new element is the 3D-printed steering wheel clasp and the individual decorative trim strip in the passenger area. Each decorative trim strip is unique and bears the vehicle’s limited-edition production number. Their GP-specific hexagonal structure echoes the surface structure of the shift paddles. In this way, MINI demonstrates a whole new dimension of how 3D printing can be integrated in the serial production process.

The use of additive processes such as 3D printing not only raises customisation to a new level, it also enables entirely new forms of design style that were not previously possible using conventional tools.

Minimalistic rear end

Mini John Cooper Works GP Design Sketch Render

The MINI John Cooper Works GP does not have a rear seat, as was the case in the predecessor models, with preference instead being given to achieving the lowest possible overall weight. The clear and tidy surfaces of the rear compartment also reflect a reduction to the essentials. The large “GP” lettering in the rear panel is achieved by the use of different grains and gives the interior a striking, novel accentuation. Behind the front seats, a red cross-brace generates a racing atmosphere.

The Design Team

Adrian von Hooydonk, Head of BMW Group Design
Oliver Heilmer, Head of MINI Design
Thomas Sycha, Head of MNI Exterior Design
Christian Bauer, Head of MINI Interior Design
Kerstin Schmeding, Head of MINI Colour and Material Design

(Source: MINI)

Image Gallery

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Mini John Cooper Works GP: the design - Image 1
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