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MINI ELECTRIC PACESETTER UNVEILED

Posted by Matt Bell on 30th March 2021

Based on the marque’s first electric car with a strong whiff of JCW, Mini has created the Electric Pacesetter, which will feature as Formula E’s upcoming safety car. Is this a preview for an all-new electric JCW from Mini in the future?

The track-only Electric Pacesetter special has been created ahead of the 2021 Formula E season. It makes use of the brand’s motorsport expertise from the John Cooper Works division, hence why the car you see here looks familiar thanks to CFRP wheels spats, that rear wing and a bold diffuser.

Underneath, though, is where things get a bit interesting. While it retains the 181bhp made from the road-going electric Mini, torque has been upped to 206lb ft to help with acceleration. That, combined with the accumulative loss of 130kg over the regular electric Mini means the Pacesetter accelerates from 0-62mph in 6.7 seconds, some 0.6 seconds quicker than the production car.

In place of the standard suspension setup are competition-spec 3-way adjustable coilovers. The track has been increased by 10mm, four-piston brake calipers are nabbed straight from the JCW GP car and new 18-inch forged wheels are shod with Michelin Pilot Sport 4s measuring 245mm wide. Inside, bucket seats replace the regular loungers, complete with six-point harnesses and a roll cage.

The 130kg diet has come about thanks to removing pretty much everything you don’t need for track-driving, think sound deadening, rear seats etc.

At the moment, the Mini Electric Pacesetter remains a one-off special for safety car duties during the Formula E season, but, rumour has it, a fully-electric JCW is set to arrive before the end of 2021.