298 HP Stage 1 MINI JCW Engine Tune Has Us Baffled

The guys from BR-Performance have seemingly developed an engine tune that takes your MINI John Cooper Works model up from its standard 231 PS to nearly 300 PS with a simple ECU tune. And yes, this is a Stage 1 upgrade that doesn’t involve massive hardware add-ons and, therefore, a lot easier to get.
MINI JCW Stage 1 1 photo
Photo: BR-Performance
We took the JCW out for a spin earlier this year and found the power of the 2-liter 4-cylinder engine under its hood more than adequate, without going too far off or becoming hard to control. The wheels have plenty of grip and they will rarely lose it, only when pushed to the limit.

Therefore, we’re thinking that the MINI engineers decided to keep the engine so tame with a purpose in mind, it was no accident. A lot of customers rushed to call the JCW underpowered and claimed that the 2-liter mill could’ve been pushed to far greater lengths.

Well, they may be right to some extent, especially considering what the guys from BR-Performance achieved with the stock hardware. The power was taken up to 298 HP, while the torque figure went up from 320 Nm (236 lb-ft) to 417 Nm (307 lb-ft), numbers that are downright impressive.

It will be interesting to see, though, how the transmission will handle all that extra grunt. Be it the manual 6-speed or the automatic with the same number of gears, they are most likely not built to withstand such great numbers.

Either way, the car seems to be up and running and we can’t hide the fact that we are extremely curious to find out how it handles the extra 67 horsepower and the added 97 Nm (71.5 lb-ft) of torque. Until we get to drive such a beast, all we can do is drool thinking of it.
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