It’s a tale we’re familiar with by now: a manufacturer takes one of its models racing, does well in said race/series, then makes a special-edition road car to celebrate the occasion. The newest manufacturer to do this is Mini, who tarted up one of its John Cooper Works Countryman ALL4 models in celebration of Mini’s win at the Dakar Rally.
While the Mini Countryman didn’t fare well in the 2011 Dakar Rally, it pulled out a win in 2012. This year, co-pilots Jean-Paul Cottret and Stephane Peterhansel piloted the all-wheel drive crossover to victory after 14 stages between Lima, Peru to Santiago, Chile. This win marks Peterhansel’s eleventh victory in the famous rally.
That number—eleven—is significant, because it’s the number of special-edition cars that Mini will make to mark the occasion. All 11 Dakar Rally-edition cars are based on the stock Mini John Cooper Works Countryman, which means they’ll be powered by a turbocharged 1.6-liter I-4 engine (producing 218 hp) and featuring an electronically controlled all-wheel drive system that shifts torque to the rear wheels only in low-traction situations. Mini doesn’t say if the 11 models will use the six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission, although we’d guess that the Dakar-edition cars stay true to their namesake and offer a manual (although the actual Dakar rally car uses a sequential manual transmission).
The special-edition cars won’t offer any more horsepower than the base cars, but they will show off some limited-edition graphics and visual upgrades. The paint is matte black, and on top of that Mini puts bright-green bonnet and side stripes that show off the Mini ALL4 Racing logo and Peterhansel’s signature. No replica rally car would be complete without a race number card and some spotlights, to the Dakar JCW Countryman has both: the front doors show off Peterhansel and Cottret’s name and entry number, and Mini puts a set of driving lights in front of the upper grille insert. The car sits atop 19-inch “cross-spoke crusher” alloy wheels.
On the inside, the floor mats and the gear shifter have bright green contrast stitching, which match the green stripes on the center console trim. As usual, the special edition car has its own plaque with serial number, just above the glove compartment.
Pricing for the car hasn’t yet been announced, but when it is, it’ll be in Euros: in deference to Peterhansel, all eleven Dakar Rally JCW Countrymans will be sold in his home country of France.