Car guys are a strange bunch. So often they look at a car and think: You know what? This car would be so much better if we completely changed it. We can only imagine that’s the thought process that comes before the creation of something as a mad as a BMW V8-engined Mini.

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Yep, you read that right, this new-gen Mini packs a V8 motor under its stubby bonnet. The car took four years to build and made its debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed taking place in England this weekend.

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Keeping it in the family

Of course, we know that the current owner of the Mini brand is BMW. Therefore, it seems only fitting that the guys responsible for this creation chose a BMW V8 for their project. They started with an R56 generation Mini and an S65 V8 motor, then decided to create one of the craziest Minis you’re ever likely to see.

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The V8 was lifted from an E92 M3. It is a 4,0-litre motor that in stock form produced 309 kW. The same M3 also donated its M-DCT seven-speed gearbox. By slotting the entire powertrain into the small car they had to turn the Mini from front- to rear-wheel drive. Cue the smoky sideways action…

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To accommodate the change from front- to rear-wheel-drive they had to fabricate a custom floor and transmission tunnel to host the V8 and transmission. The car also features an integrated roll-cage, a custom fuel cell, custom intake, and stainless steel exhaust. Other upgrades include massive brake discs with Alcon six-piston calipers that are suspended by Bilstein/Eibach adjustable coilovers.

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Front and rear sub-frames were sourced from a Subaru WRX STi. In part because the two cars share similar tracks (front and rear) and that numerous aftermarket parts are available for the platform. A big challenge for the team was trying to get the complex engine and transmission management systems to integrate and work as one. A custom ECU allows the car to retain some of the OE functionality such as the various gearbox modes.