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by Tim Beissmann

Our spy photographers have captured the Mini Coupe John Cooper Works GP undergoing testing in Europe.

The images confirm the iconic British sports car manufacturer is developing a high-powered, lightweight two-seater to be sold alongside the second-generation Mini JCW GP hatch that was spotted at the Nurburgring in Germany late last month.

The Coupe JCW GP prototype shares its aggressive rear diffuser with the hatch prototype, and features the same matt black four-spoke alloy wheels, which were a trademark of the first-generation Mini JCW GP of 2006.

Both upcoming JCW GP models are set to be powered by the highest tune of the brand’s BMW-sourced 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine to date, potentially producing in excess of 165kW.

The combination of more power and a lower body weight may see the Mini Coupe JCW GP become the brand’s first model to be capable of accelerating from 0-100km/h in under six seconds. The Mini Coupe JCW is currently the fastest model in the stable, hitting triple figures in 6.4 seconds.

The first-generation Mini JCW GP was limited to a run of just 2000 vehicles, and the second-generation hatch and Coupe variants are likely to be similarly exclusive.

Mini has made no announcements about either JCW GP model at this stage, although as both prototypes look close to production-ready, a 2012 debut does not seem out of the question.