This V-8 Mini Cooper is the Ultimate Pocket Rocket - story fullscreen Fullscreen

This V-8 Mini Cooper is the Ultimate Pocket Rocket

This MINI Cooper has ditched its usual 4-cylinder engine in favor of a massive BMW V-8

MINI Coopers are known for providing a driving sensation similar to that of a go-kart. How exactly can you make a MINI better? Well, how about swap the engine out for a V-8 coupled with rear-wheel drive? Yeah, that’ll do it.

This V-8 Mini Cooper is the Ultimate Pocket Rocket Drivetrain
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That’s exactly what the guys at Powerflex had in mind. The VINI, or rather, the Powerflex V8 MINI, is based on the second-gen R56 MINI and has been presented by the British car suspension expert. It will be shown to the public at the Goodwood Festival of Speed which is underway as we speak. This insane endeavor took four years to complete, and it’s easy to see why.

They sourced the 4.0-liter V-8 from a BMW M3, the E92 generation to be specific, that produces 414 horsepower. Now, installing a V-shaped engine in a longitudinal position coupled to a DCT gearbox in a chassis built for a 4-cylinder is no walk in the park.

This V-8 Mini Cooper is the Ultimate Pocket Rocket Drivetrain
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which means they had to make modifications to the chassis to accommodate the prop shaft that runs to the rear axle
The entire floor and chassis had to be strengthened and modified to accommodate and accomplish this new design layout.

The engine and rear differential have been relocated with the parts sourced from a Subaru Impreza STi. In addition, McPherson struts were fitted. With all the mods, this V8-powered MINI weighs 2866 pounds on the scale.

The VINI, as a result, is a collaboration between a number of companies, including the likes of Performance Automotive Aftermarket experts such as Litchfield Motors, Bilstein shocks UK, Alcon, Tilton Engineering, Goodridge, Forge Motorsport, ITG, Aero Tec Laboratories (ATL), Syvecs, AiM Tech, Braid, Cobra Seats, Racelogic and Lifeline.

This V-8 Mini Cooper is the Ultimate Pocket Rocket Exterior
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More than anything, I am glad to see that all of these improvements were achieved without altering the exterior design of the MINI Cooper, with the exception of the wider fender flares and the change in the MINI badge, which now proudly reads VINI. Of course, the interior has been altered.

This is a car that even BMW never gave us. I mean, the BMW 1 Series at one point in time was the only hatchback with a front-engined rear-wheel drive layout and the best that the Bavarian automaker gave us was an inline-six, but a V-8? That never happened.

Even BMW gave up on this layout and the current 1 Series has a transversely mounted engine. This Powerflex VINI truly is special in that regard.

As previously stated, Powerflex will debut the VINI at Goodwood, which will take place from July 8 to 11, although it is unknown whether any lucky enthusiasts will be able to purchase it. I can’t wait to see this VINI hit the track and give us some power slides.

This V-8 Mini Cooper is the Ultimate Pocket Rocket Exterior
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With a front engine rear wheel drive setup, it has to be a hoot to drive.

Is it a smart idea to have a MINI with a V8 under the hood? What’s your take on this VINI? Let us know in the comments below.

Khris Bharath
Khris Bharath
Khris is a classic car aficionado and adores his Jags and Alfas, although he keeps tabs on everything from super exotics like an old EB 110 to the latest from Lucid. Formula One is very close to his heart, and he diligently makes time to tune in for the Grand Prix on Sundays. Khris also loves his road trips and he prefers stick shift over an Auto any day.  Read full bio
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