Is it worth it?

After reading all of Gabe’s entries (and watching the video) on his time with the MCS JCW, not to mention his full write up, I’m now torn.

I mean, really, how cool would it be to get a JCW MINI, right?

Here is my delima. Is a MINI worth $30K?

For a bit more than that I’ve built a MINI with the following options:

  • Space Blue/Silver
  • Sport and JCW pack
  • Rear Fog
  • MFSW
  • OBC

Still up in the air is the cold weather package.

While I have no doubt that this car would be worth the money, keep in mind that kind of money can buy a whole lotta car these days. Cars that are faster, more practical, get better gas mileage, can haul more people and/or gear. I mean, I drool every time I see a ’00 – ’02 330ci, which can be had with low miles for that price. Or a slightly more used 5 series (same vintage), not to mention the plethora of Big 3 autos that can be had, new, for that price.

Of course I don’t need JCW. But I’d probably do the 3 mods, plus brakes and suspension. Now, the JCW car doesn’t come with the JCW suspension, but that I can over look.

So, get all the cool JCW go-fast goodies from the factory and do the extra bits later (interior/exterior trim items), or get the car I want, configured the way I want, just without the JCW?

Within reason, what say you?

11 replies on “Is it worth it?”

  1. I have not owned a self-modified mini, so I can’t really compare them with my MCS JCW. However, I am thrilled with the JCW, its smoothness and the fact that you have something designed AND tested AND covered by the warranty. The smoothness is wonderful and manifests itself in the power range and still, after 25,000 miles, brings a constant grin to my face when I drive it. One should also consider the long-term value and the resale value of something that will surely become a classic. Selling a self-modified mini is always going to raise a number of questions…a used JCW I feel will always have a higher value.
    The heritage vs bhp will always be a discussion…. I appreciate the heritage… and the grins!

  2. I can’t even think of a cold weather package right now, considering the temps we’ve all been having.

    JCW? Go for turbo!!! :-)

  3. Ack! No first year car for me. Not again. Been there. Done that. Hell, I even have the tshirt!

  4. “worth” – what a word …

    Do you need transport from A to B and that’s all? Loads of bargains below $15K.

    Presumably you want to enjoy your drive so the question becomes, will you ENJOY driving something else?
    I don’t like BMWs; their interior is dull, their exterior is bulky … they drive nicely, but they just don’t “do it” for me :) [and I’ve driven a 5 series, 7 series and an X5, on long journeys]

    You know exactly what that $30K car will give you – the pleasure you have now, combined with four years of quality improvements, and massively more “go” with the JCW and the ’05+ gearing.
    Will the alternatives give you equivalent pleasure?

    I think the MINI excels in basically every category except one – space for more than two people. So how often do you need that space?

  5. hey db –

    decisions, decisions…. i always wanted a full on jcw car, but was shut out as the kit wont be appearing for the mcsa. (yes, its true, i prefer paddles to stick!) that being said, i have had A LOT of fun modding my car piece by piece. the time its taken to gradually add in everything has really made ownership much more exciting than i had previously imagined. first the cai, then the exhaust, then the pully… you get the idea. in a perfect world i would have preferred the jcw kit, but in retrospect i am glad it worked out this way. if i had the option now i would still have taken the jcw route (most of my mods are all jcw anyway – minus the pulley and reart sway bar) but i will say that having just returned from a trip to helix in philly that eric is helping me cook up a way to best a jcw car in terms of power. if you can find a tuner who will match the factory warranty (which helix does) then i don’t see how you could go wrong just extending the mod process out for a while…

    – drew

  6. I think Ian said it all.

    I would add that I have the cold weather seats… they came with my used MCS… I never have used them in my year plus ownership but the wife finds them nice.

    Still not liking what I have seen of the ’07… I love the Supercharger whine. My wife’s ’05 A4 has a turbo… just not the same.

    Would love to have the silver roof on my Chili Red.

  7. ….if you like the car, get it (this avoids the “regret” issue down the line). You only live once in this world. Heck, you could spend 40k on a piece of crap car from most of the major car companies, and maybe just have a trunk to show for it. (a play on Ian’s thoughts)

    If you don’t like it, no harm done if you don’t, as for many people, a regular MC or a MCs is just as neat to have and drive.

  8. db, get the car you want. It is a MINI, not just another car. No rationale really comes into it. You buy it with your heart, not your head.

    Regarding first year build cars – not only have you been there, done that, got the t-shirt – you’ve also built the website!


  9. Thanks for the input gang!

    Still not sure what I’m going to do yet (kinda depends on the bank) but you’ll be the first to know when I do anything.

  10. This question never even crossed my mind. As soon as the JCW package was introduced, I knew it was what I would get with my mini.
    You can’t put a price on the smiles it provides every day, or making even my commute a joy. Worth every penny.

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