Road & Track handling test summary

MINI John Cooper Works Coupe

This summer, MINI USA is running a MINI Test Drive Takedown campaign which compares the six MINI models against their competitors.  Here at the Library of Motoring we are going to do the same using published facts and figures.  Today we have the first of the series.

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In the back pages of every issue of Road & Track magazine you’ll find their Road Test Summary.  They test mostly performance cars for acceleration, top speed, braking, and handling.  In March 2012, they tested both the MINI John Cooper Works Coupe and the MINI Cooper S (Hardtop).  The MINI John Cooper Works Clubman was tested in January 2012.

Because handling is what MINIs are well-known for, this summary is focused on that category.  Road & Track tests handling on the skidpad and slalom:

HANDLING is quantified two ways: The skidpad measures steady-speed cornering grip around a 200-ft.-diameter circle (run in both directions). The slalom, run through eight cones spaced at 100-ft. intervals, samples both controllability and grip during transient handling.
Significant difference: Skidpad, 0.02 g; slalom, 1.0 mph.

The table below is arranged by slalom speed with the fastest at the top.  It includes a sampling of performance cars all costing more than the MINI JCW Coupe’s as-tested price (except for the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution SE) and all with much higher horsepower.  As you can see from the figures, the MINIs are in impressive company with the JCW Coupe especially standing out in the list.

Road & Track handling test summary

Make & Model Price as
Porsche 911 GT2 RS $260,980 620 516 1.02 75.9
Nissan GT-R $95,280 545 463 0.97 75.0
Chevrolet Corvette Z06 $98,010 505 470 1.06 74.1
Aston Martin V8 Vantage S $157,670 430 361 0.97 73.7
Dodge Viper SRT10 ACR $98,110 600 560 1.12 73.4
BMW 1 Series M Coupe $50,460 335 332 0.95 73.4
Lotus Evora S $88,795 345 295 0.99 73.1
MINI JCW Coupe $38,850 208 192 0.91 71.8
Subaru Impreza WRX Sti Limited $39,870 305 290 0.91 70.9
Audi TT RS $61,125 360 343 0.95 70.7
Jaguar XKR-S $132,875 542 502 0.91 70.7
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution SE $36,550 291 300 0.97 70.2
Lamborghini Murciélago LP670-4 SV $480,325 670 487 0.97 70.0
Ford Shelby GT500 $55,330 550 510 1.01 69.9
Nissan Nismo 370Z $39,540 350 276 0.93 69.9
Bugatti Veyron 16.4 Super Sport $2,765,840 1184 1106 0.99 69.6
MINI Cooper S $29,700 181 177 0.90 69.4
MINI JCW Clubman $35,350 208 192 0.87 69.3
Ferrari California $200,822 453 358 0.96 69.2
Cheverolet Camaro SS Convertible $42,180 426 420 0.89 68.4
Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG $143,460 518 465 0.89 66.6

We will have more comparisons in the coming weeks.

2 thoughts on “Road & Track handling test summary

  • Eddie

    Now, going down the list… as a Mere Mortal (seeking a daily driver)…

    the 1st cars to be of consideration, and my thoughts…

    1 Series M : ah yes, if I could save save, nice choice
    JCW Coupe: sweet! the first ‘affordable’ car, but dang, a bit small…
    WRX: there we go, decent daily driver and look at those nice stats! but I don’t want a WRX STi so let’s keep going…
    Audi TT RS: “woah, when did they get so pricey! Oh, an RS…”
    Mitsu Evo: like WRX, but… I’m a grown up now…
    Nismo… see Evo and WRX
    Veyron: yeah, I could sell my children… moving on
    MCS: ah, yes, affordable and on the list! nice… but…
    JCW Clubman: oh look! There we have it! Great price, plays in the big boy league here…

    and that’s why I drive a Clubman 😉

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