MINI John Cooper Works Countryman in Australia late-2012

MINI has revealed the new MINI John Cooper Works Countryman ahead of its 2012 Geneva Motor Show debut. This is the hot version of the compact off-roader, and is the first JCW to come with an optional auto transmission.

Like the normal MINI John Cooper Works, the Countryman version comes with a range of performance revisions over the standard version. There’s uprated suspension, brakes, fat 18-inch alloy wheels, and a stinging two-tone bodykit.

Up front sits a worked 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine, producing 160kW of power and 300Nm of torque. It’s able to propel the pint-sized SUV from 0-100km/h in 7.0 seconds, and onto a top speed of 225km/h.

The new John Cooper Works Countryman achieves an average fuel consumption rating of 7.2L/100km. Interestingly, the hot Countryman will be available with a six-speed automatic transmission – a first for John Cooper Works models – and in that fuel consumption is increased to 8.0L/100km.h.

Other highlights include a club-spec interior with sports seats, dials and trimmings, as well as a fresh sports steering wheel and some bespoke sill plates. At the back and underneath sits a sports exhaust system providing that distinct snap, crackle and pop of the nimble Cooper.

The MINI John Cooper Works Countryman will go on sale in Europe during the third quarter of this year, and is set for Australia towards the end of this year.