Mini Cooper’s Dune Buggy Is Ready for Its ‘Mad Max’ Moment

The JCW Buggy was custom-built for the 2018 Dakar Rally

November 22, 2017 9:00 am

In 1977, French motorcycle racer Thierry Sabine got lost in the Libyan desert during the Abidjan-Nice Rally and was so enthralled with the landscape, he vowed to create a rally race in the sand. That vow turned into the inaugural Dakar Rally, a 6,200-mile off-road trek from Paris to Dakar that has since morphed into a 5,600-mile race from Lima, Peru, to Córdoba, Argentina.

The 40th edition of the Dakar Rally will kick off in South America on January 6th and the newly announced Mini John Cooper Works Buggy Edition 40 will be participating in the race.

Built in response to Peugeot’s recent dominance at Dakar, the JCW Buggy is powered by the same inline six-cylinder diesel engine that’s under the hood of the JCW Rally edition.

Dune Buggy (4 images)

Fitted with a tubular steel frame that has Kevlar stretched over it to provide protection in extreme situations, the aerodynamic buggy’s body is made of carbon fiber reinforced plastic.

Capable of generating an output of 340 HP, the two-wheel-drive JCW Buggy is Mini’s best hope of bringing home the title in 2018. To see if the new buggy is able to unseat Peugeot, here’s what you need to know to attend Dakar.

As Sabine once opined: “It’s a challenge for those who go. A dream for those who stay behind.”

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