Cooper S represents the next level of enjoyment and handling in the Mini
series. It features a 4-cylinder, supercharged engine with intercooler technology, boasting 168 bhp. It is the highest-performing model in the range, and is capable of a top speed of 137 mph, as well as achieving 0-60 mph in an outstanding 6.8 seconds. Torque is delivered across a broad range, with its peak of 162 lb/ft arriving at 4,000 rpm.
The styling and design of the Mini
Cooper S are a reflection of its superior performance credentials. The air intake scoop located on the bonnet is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also aids in the cooling of the air flow between the engine and the supercharger. Such practical modifications increase the efficiency with which the Cooper S’s additional power is transferred to the road.
Inside, the Cooper S boasts top quality materials, including fine upholsteries, leathers, and a range of trims for the doors and fascias. The unique look is rounded off by a leather gear lever and steering wheel, sports seats, and a footrest made from stainless steel.
Under the curve of the Mini
Cooper S’s bonnet lies a naturally aspirated engine which offers exceptional agility and responsiveness. The presence of a supercharger allows for fresh air compression, reaching an overpressure level of 0.8 bar. The intercooler then reduces the temperature of this compressed air before its entry into the combustion unit. The results of this additional technology are increased engine performance, output and charge. The 1.6 litre engine delivers its maximum output of 168 bhp at 6,000 rpm.
What does the ‘S’ mean?
The moniker ‘Cooper S’ is designed to evoke a rich sporting heritage. The Original Mini
Cooper S was the dominant force in European rallying in the mid 1960s, having been developed by John Cooper Racing. Its list of victories is impressive, with notable achievements including first place in the Monte Carlo rallies of ’64, ’65 and ’67. The ‘S’ derivative also achieved enormous success in both the 1960s and 1970s, with a string of wins in the European Saloon Car and Touring Car championships.
The ‘S’ suffix has created plenty of debate as to its true origins. One theory claims that John Cooper and Sir Alec Issigonis could not agree over whether to use the name ‘Special’ or ‘Sport’, and that they agreed on the mutually satisfactory ‘S’ as a compromise. The real reason may never be discovered.
For 2006, the John Cooper Works performance enhancement package has been made available as a factory-fitted option for the Mini
Cooper S. As well as upgrading engine performance, the package also includes a sport brake setup and limited slip differential. Mini
USA also offers an extended range of John Cooper Works performance tuning accessories.
© 2006 Martin Hemmings and Bobby Wong for sport-cars.org April 1, 2008, 11:46 am