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Mini Countryman JCW Back on for 2012 Release

It seems that Mini is back on track with the Countryman JCW, which should now be hitting the showrooms by next summer.

Last we heard the much-anticipated JCW variant of the Mini Countryman wasn't going to be ready until 2012. However it has just been revealed that the John Cooper Works model will in fact be launched at the Geneva Motor Show in March and is tipped to go into production by May. These official pictures are of a prototype Mini Countryman JCW undergoing final evaluation testing in wintery Austria, although Mini is being guarded with the technical specs.

The JCW is almost certain to be considerably more powerful than the 177hp turbocharged 1.6-liter Countryman Cooper S it is based on. As a result, a 0-62mph time of around 7.0 seconds instead of 7.6 is likely. The JCW will also use the Cooper S-derived sports suspension, will sit 10mm lower and have upgraded rear brakes, according to company insiders. Even with its light disguise, a different grille and front bumper is evident, as are flared wheel arches, a new rear bumper and diffuser with integrated dual exhausts.

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