Is Mini Cooking Up A Hardcore 300-HP Clubman?

Spy Video

Looks like Mini is gearing up to take on the Ford Focus RS and Honda Civic Type R.

Back in 2015, there was speculation that Mini was cooking up a hardcore Clubman to compete with the cream of the crop in the hot hatch segment. Since then, there have been no sightings of the souped-up Clubman – until now. A spy video shared by Automotive Mike shows a new camouflaged Clubman being tested at the Nurburgring. Judging by the raspy exhaust note, this is likely to be our first look at the long-rumored hardcore Mini Clubman - and it sounds sublime.

The camouflaged Clubman was filmed at a gas station near the Nurburgring before being taken for a spin around the German circuit, where we get to hear its growling exhaust crackle and pop. Compared to the current 228-hp Mini Clubman JCW, the new hardcore Clubman is said to be powered by BMW's 2.0-liter turbo found in the 330i tuned to produce a whopping 300 hp.

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If this is the case, Mini is clearly hoping to compete with the likes of the Honda Civic Type R, Volkswagen Golf R and Subaru WRX STI. The hardcore Clubman will also presumably benefit from Mini’s ALL4 all-wheel drive system - move over Ford Focus RS? Going by previous JCW-tuned models, you can also expect to see larger fenders and red trim. Given the current hype surrounding the Honda Civic Type R and Ford Focus RS, the time seems right for Mini to release the 2.0-liter turbo's untapped potential and take on the established leaders in the hot hatch segment. Whether this does turn out to be the hardcore Clubman JCW remains to be seen - hopefully Mini won't keep us in suspense for too long.

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