Picture: Vincent Toth @msck64
The selection to go down the route of altering the suspension equipment was one in all having the ability to use the automobile extra as a every day and for longer distances, but additionally eradicating the nervous nature of the automobile and enhance the dealing with. Now with the adjustable AST equipment in place, the automobile is extra relaxed and nice on nation roads, no lengthy tramlining, and presents a wider usability whereas even enhancing its means on observe.
With each the engine and suspension out of the way in which, it’s time to contact on the inventory tires. With three totally different Hankook tire kits on provide for the automobile, there are a variety of choices. The inventory Hankook tire is a bit too delicate, particularly on observe. The winter tire set was initially a whole unknown, however got here ultimately in a very bizarre dimension and requires a brand new tiny rim.
You would possibly ask your self the query; why doesn’t the GP3 have these tires? In response to MINI, the Hankook is the popular provider to many MINI fashions so it was solely pure to retain the connection. In fact, there are another choices on the market fore the 225/35R18 dimension, just like the Michelin’s Pilot Sport 3. On the constructive finish, the wheels are extraordinarily mild, weighing lower than 9kgs.
With greater than 10,000 kms achieved behind the steering wheel of the brand new GP3, it has develop into clear to me how effectively the enhancements have introduced out that untouched nature of the MINI. That’s not solely due to my very own experiences up to now, however extra importantly the enter all through the consumer base and group which has provided a big mixed perception into the GP. Due to this fact in case you look to enhance the automobile, have a look at these three key facets; the suspension, the tires and the engine.
In fact, quite a few individuals would say that extra energy is required, together with a louder exhaust word, and a guide gearbox. Though these are must-haves you possibly can have a look at different enhancements corresponding to a brake improve with higher pads, braided traces, an enhanced disc and improved brake oil, or bucket seats and a cage. These typically come into play once you need to actually broaden your horizon on observe and are for the GP3 a matter of “stage 2” within the vary of enhancements.
Trunk Area For Observe Tires
What else is there to say that could possibly be of curiosity for you as a possible (future) proprietor of a GP3? There are few factors to notice which might be instantly observed once you dwell longer with the automobile. First up is the absence of MINI’s inside mild equipment. The GP3 doesn’t have any lights within the footwells, no glove compartment mild, no rear compartment mild. In fact, as a observe automobile wouldn’t have these. However through the winter interval, the absence of sunshine sources within the cabin created an attention-grabbing expertise wherein I had to make use of my cellphone’s flashlight to search out issues throughout the cabin.
Additionally the absence of any baggage nets within the trunk provided for an attention-grabbing problem. In the long run, I ordered two aftermarket ones, which I connected into the rear compartment not permitting any issues within the trunk to fly round beneath braking, cornering or accelerating.
An attention-grabbing level is the area within the trunk. With out having rear seats and a rear parcel shelf, you lose a substantial quantity of weight, but additionally achieve a whole lot of area which you need to use for a set of observe tires, which simply match within the rear. This lets you convey a second set of tires to a observe day or run your avenue tires to/from the observe and your observe tires on the circuit.
I left probably the most mentioned topic because the final one in all my story – the wheel arches. This has been a sizzling subject within the MINI group concerning their practicality and design. However we requested the MINI people for the explanation behind their design. In response to MINI, the GP3 needed to embrace these wheel arches for homologation causes. The tires have to be coated by the wheelhouse to a sure extent, not solely in Europe, however much more so in nations like Japan. For this reason the spats needed to be that enormous.
So whether or not we like them or not, they’re a part of authorized necessities.