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by Tim Beissmann

The Mini Paceman JCW will become the brand’s most expensive regular-production model when it lands in Australian showrooms in May.

The John Cooper Works (JCW) Paceman will cost $58,600 in standard six-speed manual form and break the $60K barrier when optioned with the six-speed automatic, priced from $60,950 before on-road costs.

The three-door Mini Paceman JCW compact performance crossover commands an $1800 premium over the more practical five-door Countryman JCW on which it’s based, mirroring the pricing strategy applied to the regular Paceman range that launched locally earlier this month.

Like its high-performance Countryman sibling, the Mini Paceman JCW’s 1.6-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine produces 160kW of power (at 6000rpm) and 280Nm of torque (1900-5000rpm), and can deliver 300Nm for short periods between 2100-4500rpm on overboost.

With drive sent to each corner via Mini’s ALL4 all-wheel-drive system, the Paceman JCW sprints from 0-100km/h in 6.9 seconds, regardless of transmission selection.

The manual version consumes 8.0 litres of fuel per 100km on the combined cycle, making it slightly more frugal than the auto at 8.3L/100km.

Mini says the Paceman JCW’s chassis has been specially optimised with dynamically tuned dampers and anti-roll bars and a high-performance brake package. Pressing the Sport button in the centre console enhances the responsiveness and soundtrack of the engine, modifies the steering feel, and (in auto models) hastens the transmission’s shift times.

A JCW aero kit, unique two-tone paint colour and stripe combinations, 18-inch light-alloy wheels and a sports exhaust system distinguish the flagship Paceman from the outside, while a JCW sports leather steering wheel, anthracite roof liner and instrument dials, piano black trim, and contrasting red stitching and seams headline the interior upgrades.

All Paceman JCWs sold in Australia will also be fitted with the Chilli Package, which includes bi-xenon headlights, climate control, anti-dazzle rear-view mirror, cloth/leather upholstery and a Harmon/Kardon audio system.

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