MINI has provided an early look at its new John Cooper Works Convertible that will debut at next month's Geneva Auto Show. The JCW drop-top will go on sale here in April, with a starting price of $34,950. Like the coupe version of MINI's rowdiest road warrior, this new cabrio comes with a full load of dedicated performance enhancements as well as an impressive array of comfort/convenience touches. And it still manages to get pretty decent fuel economy.
Under that boldly scooped hood, the JCW Convertible has the same turbocharged 1.6-liter four that cranks out 208 horsepower from 1,850-5,600 rpm as found in its steel-roofed counterpart. It, too, features an overboost circuit on the turbo that can briefly bump peak torque from 192 lb.-ft. to 207 lb.-ft. between 2,000-5,300 revs. Backed by a six-speed manual transmission, this al fresco super MINI can sprint from 0-60 mph in 6.6 seconds and top out at 146 mph but still earns preliminary U.S. EPA figures of 26 mpg/34 mpg city/highway. The transition from closed to open mode reflects the same built-in quickness, with the power top requiring just 15 seconds to cycle through either process.
In addition to its unique JCW interior trim, all of the other functional "Works" hardware is also part of the Convertible mix. The goodies roster opens with a full sport suspension that includes driver-selectable Dynamic Stability Control and Dynamic Traction Control with Electronic Differential Lock Control matched with 17-inch JCW Challenge alloy wheels wrapped in 205/45 W-rated performance rubber. That's complemented by electric power steering and upgraded anti-lock disc brakes that incorporate Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Cornering Brake Control and Brake Assist plus the console-mounted "Sport" button that quickens steering and throttle responses.
Like all MINI variants, the JCW Convertible will offer a wide range of personalization potential, from colors and trims to options like a navigation system, supplemental sport instruments and Bluetooth hands-free capabilities that include full iPhone integration.