This 414hp Mini Cooper S powered by a V8 from an M3 took four years to build

It’s been nicknamed ‘Vini’
by Greg Potts | Jul 18, 2021
PHOTO: Dan Sherwood
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You’d think plugging a comparatively giant 4.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 into a tiny R56 Mini Cooper S would be a tricky project, wouldn’t you?

Well, you’d be absolutely correct, because the absurdly brilliant creation above took British automotive bush specialists Powerflex no less than four years to pull off. Great commitment, folks.

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Powerflex has christened the finished product ‘Vini,’ and all you need to know is that it’s a road-legal modern-day Mini with the 414hp S65 V8 engine from the E90 BMW M3 powering the rear wheels through the BMW’s original seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox. Holy...

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Okay, okay, that definitely isn’t all you need to know. Said V8 is mounted longitudinally, and as you’d imagine, pretty much everything had to be reworked to get it in there. From the outside, there are glimpses—the hood scoop has grown and the arches are slightly wider than normal—but underneath is where the major work happened.

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The entire floorpan and the bulkhead were reworked, a bespoke eight-point roll cage was built in, and custom MacPherson struts were constructed. The engine, gearbox, and rear diff were then all mounted on Subaru Impreza WRX STI subframes.

The wheels are Braid Forged R motorsport alloys, and underneath them are Alcon brakes. The dampers are three-way adjustable units courtesy of Bilstein, and the fuel tank is a 90-liter ATL F1-spec cell.

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Apparently, final weight is around 1,300kg, and Powerflex boss David Power (great name) fully intends to use the Vini as a proper track toy—hence the stripped-out touring-car-style interior.

Proper job, this. Thoughts, Internet?

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NOTE: This article first appeared on TopGear.com. Minor edits have been made.

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PHOTO: Dan Sherwood
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