Mini Cooper S R56 SPORT Concept


Here is a short version of the events that started a new chapter in my life ...

I fell in love with this car from the moment I got in it...

My name is Martin. I really like mechanics, electronics, computers and operating systems as well as specific software that always allows me to achieve my goal. What I value most is quality, good thinking and common sense.

As a car mechanic freak (hobby), I have a lot of professional tools, knowledge and quite a lot of experience in repairing various cars.

In March 2019 I acquired a Mini Cooper S R56 2007 with 66,613 miles on the clock.

At that time, I didn't know anything about this car, only that the car was made by the British Motor Corporation from 1961 to 1971, then from 1990 to 2000 and after that it is made by BMW to this day.

The first "trip" made a very positive impression on me and I wanted to learn more about this car, since I like to check and repair vehicles.

The photos below show the car when I came to my place with it. Pay attention to the engine compartment, because this is where my attention will be focused on the beginning of the modification.

plan for modification - increase in engine power

I checked on the internet for a lot of films, forums, news groups and Mini maniacs articles.

Thinking logically (which I really like ;-), in order to increase the engine power, you need to supply more "combustion mixture" = AIR + PETROL (Fuel). There is no problem with fuel, because the car is equipped with a fuel pump in the tank and a high-pressure pump at the injectors. Standard injectors also have adequate reserves for this type of modification. What about the air then - is there is enough of it? Of course everything depends on what we want to achieve.

If the high-pressure fuel pump gives 10% more fuel after reprogramming the ECU, the air is another matter. BMW programmed the "on-board" computer in such a way so that the exact amount of fuel fully coincided with the exact ratio of air which is applied by the turbo, air ducts and filters. Logically speaking, I will enlarge all air ducts and get rid of any resistances from the air system such as dampers, valves, noise/sound generators, etc. I also replace the factory-equipped Turbo with a larger capacity JCW Turbo.

To even more effectively increase the amount of Oxygen in the air supplied to the engine, I will install a much larger Intercooler and a direct cold air intake on the cone filter. Cooler air is more dense than warmer air. Warm air can actually hold more moisture because molecules are farther apart, making more room for moisture. Cold air is dense and compact, it's "thicker," so when you breathe in you get more oxygen.

Of course, the increase in engine power is also related to its higher operating temperatures, especially at high loads, so I have to think about new silicone hoses for the entire cooling system, a new water pump and thermostat to keep everything running reliably.


I will install a much larger Intercooler.

air ducts

I will enlarge all air ducts.


Larger capacity JCW Turbo.

modification check - General inspection of the car

One of the most important things to do before any modification is to check all the components in the car that will directly correspond to or co-operate with the increase in engine power. Because the car is already 12 years old, I have to check almost every component. To get more power, that is to force the engine to work harder, I have to be sure that all parts responsible for the correct operation of the engine will work without any problems.

I decided to replace many of the sensitive and most important components with new ones:

  • engine cooling system pump (new metal)

  • engine cooling system pump pulley

  • engine cooling system hoses (new silicone)

  • engine cooling system thermostat (109'C)

  • engine cambelt

  • engine cambelt tensioner

  • engine timing chain

  • engine timing chain rails

  • engine timing chain tensioner

I will do a pressure test on individual cylinders to be sure that each piston will compress properly. I decided to replace the timing chain, so that I do not have additional work later and reduce the risk of breaking it, cracking and crushing valves. I will generally check for any oil leaks from various parts in the car. Of course, I will check the entire suspension system as well.

gearbox shaft seal

Gerbox oil leak

vacuum pump seal

Engine oil leak

Crankshaft seal

Engine oil leak

cylinder valve cover

Engine oil leak

Suspension system

Anti Roll Bar bush

modification work

Any work related to the modification is given below in more or less detail in comic book form.

There are many photos and almost all of them have descriptions of the operations that were performed.

If anyone requires a detailed description of any procedure, please contact me.

This is not a guide or instruction on how to perform such a modification, but information on how I performed the entire procedure. If anyone undertakes to carry out such modifications on the basis of the information contained on my website, then he / she takes responsibility for everything and must remember that each modification will result in the loss of the remaining car warranty, if any.

I do not take responsibility for wrong operation or bad execution of modifications that are described on my website.

intake and air ducts

Replacing most of the air ducts

new seal

Replacing Crankshaft seal

cleaning all valves

For oil and cooling system

Removing whole front

For access to the parts for replacement

old small original intercooler

Will be replaced by 3 times bigger capacity

Time for Cooling System

Removing Coolant

Removing old rubber pipes

Checking for oil leaks

Silicone hoses

Replacing old rubber pipes

new thermostat

To ensure proper cooling operation

new hoses

Resistant to high temperatures

old plastic pump

Removing old cooling pump

new metal pump

Redy for installation

new belt pulley

On the new cooling pump

new belt tensioner

For new v-belt

belt tensioner


new v-belt


Vacuum pump removed

All seals will be replaced

Full regenaration

New High Temp paint coat

checking all conections

For cooling system

checking for leaks

Filling the entire system

Air suppressor - OUT

Sound generator - OUT

Air filter container - OUT

Air intake "bottom" - STAYS

bigger pipes

More Air = More Power

bigger hoses

Replacing existing Air ducts

not used - just cover

Such a waste

Old filter compartment

New filter compartment

More AIR from outside

Inlet via two separate routes

Making room for new stuff

Air filter compartment

Direct cold air intake

All conected

New intercooler


oil catch box

To reduce the oil deposit in INTAKE


Cheking intake temperature

Many stone chips


Sanding & Cleaning


8D Carbon fiber

In the meantime - wraps

external door deco

Cutting Vinyl

Nice, fresh look

Instead of gray plastic

old plastic look

Preparing parts for wraping

new carbon fiber look

I am very pleased with the results


Disassembly of the rest


Side "skirts"


Rear bumper

White matte stripes


white tyre letters

Painting by paint pen


White matte Vinyl

new exhaust system

Much bigger and first silencer cut-out

3 inches pipes

Bigger than the original

Disasembled all plastic parts

Installed new wraped parts

Ordered necessary clips

Everything is put together

Washing the bonnet

cleaning before wraping



new sport exhaust system

First "silencer" cut-out

exhaust installed

Beautiful deep bass

anti roll bar bushes

Bran new

anti roll bar bushes

Old one for replacement

anti roll bar bushes

New one IN and clips painted

I downloaded the car's ECU for all the data to review and check the parameters with which I can change the maps responsible for the amount of fuel - petrol and air.

Sanded first layer of clear

Clear coat sanded

Looking good

Stickers ON

Rough idle investigation

Looking for Vacuum leak

carbon deposit checking

Intake OUT to check the status of Carbon residue in the engine

Checking o2 sensors

Measuring sensor using Propan torch

cleaning o2 sensors

Cleaning all carbon residue

checking MAF sensor

Cleaning sensor with pure alcohol

Air intake cleaner

Best product for this task from my experience for little price

air intake removed

All channels and ducts will be cleaned and washed

Valves covered with carbon

Valves covered with carbon

Valves covered with carbon

Valves covered with carbon

compound for paint

Smoothing new paint places on the body

palm wax on

Palm wax stays on the body for two years


Looks like a mirror

customise tools

Metal brushes, paper towels, absorbing oil fabrics

straws in the spark plug holes

Way to check that the cylinders are up and the valves are closed

Valves are clean

After making sure that the valves are closed and the cylinders are in the upper position, I flooded the inlet of the cylinder with the liquid (Air Intake & Carburettor Cleaner) and cleaned it completely with brushes as well as paper and fabric towels.

The effect surprised me completely because I could see a completely clean engine block and beautiful clean valves during the intercourse with the endoscopic camera.

cylinders and pistons pressure test

I am undergoing one of the most important tests in terms of engine quality and performance. It is a test or rather a pressure measurement on each cylinder. If there is a very large difference between one of the cylinders or the value is below 130-150 psi, then I will have a fairly expensive disassembly of the engine and its repair. All test was superb and I was so happy about it.

pressure test equipment

knocking noise

As the pipe is much bigger - hits frame

Exhaust heat tape

and metal "cable ties" for install

exhaust pipe

I wrapped the pipe, so that it would not hit the frame and make noise

Cleaning second O2 sensor

Improved connection

Checking results

Live data from the ECU

improved backlight brightness

In whole car light system

improved backlight brightness

In whole car light system

in the sun light

After replacing resistors

in the night

After replacing resistors

change of internal panels look

Preparation for wraping

Wraped in 8D super gloss vinyl

Carbon Fibre efect

suspect timing chain

Rough idle problem still existed

not replaced

and in the service book it is noted that it was replaced

my old life motto always reminds me:

if you want something to be well done, do it yourself

Vanos off by 5'

Good tip for me that it was never done


The tool cannot be mounted

chain replacing tool

Loosening Intake shaft to be able to use it

Tool installed properly

Now I can unscrew both gears.

Gears out

Now I can unscrew the crankshaft screw below

crankshaft screw

Using the biggest key I have got to do it

removing pulley

And old timing chain

install new guides

and new timing chain

intake shaft torque

20Nm + 180' of rotation

exhaustshaft torque

20Nm + 90' of rotation

crankshaft torque

50Nm + 180' of rotation

the moment of truth

With slight apprehension, I put the key in the ignition.

Because I knew that I did everything myself, and according to my motto that's only for the best, I pressed the START button without thinking.

What happened made my jaw drop...

The engine started without any problems, which made me even more convinced that if I'm searching for the highest quality of work, I can only achieve it only if I do this work myself.

after 3 months

Red Carbon Fiber Vinyl turned out not to be UV resistant

sanding whole bonnet

I removed the vinyl to prepare the surface for the primer

I had to sanded a lot of chips

Whole bonnet sanded

Primer applyed

Primer pre-sanded

Black matte

I asked the seller if it has a UV filter

carbon fibre

With UV filter

vinyl wraping

deja vu...

exquisite effect

Black Matte Carbon Fibre

White matte stripes


new air hood

Waiting for new Air Hood

New bigger Air Intake hood

Original "grill" too blocked

Painting aluminum mesh

All done

New, more aggresive look

And more Air gets inside

New, more aggresive look

And more Air gets inside

angel eyes

I bought "angel eyes" and I mounted them on a rack I made

angel eyes

View of the light ON at night

white tire pen

After 3 months, all the paint applied with the felt-tip pen started to drain from the tire. It was quite annoying, so I decided to try something else and put/glued a white rubber on the tires.

custom template

I made a template for my tires

logo letters

I cut the letters out of the rubber

gluing letters

And glued each to the tire

small engine oil leak

As you know, I am crazy about this car, so everything must work like in a Swiss watch (without jams and any problems)

damaged thread

I have to fix damaged thread in the engine block (from previous owner) to properly align and tighten the engine valve cover

I filled the entire hole for the screw with this glue

The next day, when it dried up, I could drill in it

I drilled with a slightly smaller drill than the thread itself

I also bought new stainless steel M6 40mm screws

rust ???

Everything looked fine in the engine bay except for one element

cooling pipe

Turbo coolant tube rusted very quickly after the last cleaning

turbo cooling pipe

I have to paint it with high temperature primer and paint

now it's cool

Now it looks like new. A small detail, but I am so happy

turbo temp. cover shield

Of course I also painted the temperature shield/cover for the turbo

As winter is coming

I want to check some specific chemical for the engine

I did some tests while driving and idling - NO OIL ADDITIVE

I did some tests while driving and idling - WITH OIL ADDITIVE

After checking all the measurements and comparing them using the computer data, I found that with OIL ADDITIVE the engine, even when idling, has a 3% lower load, which does not seem to be a huge, but with modifications and tunings, the load does not add, but multiplies and this is a big difference.

rubber letters

Unfortunately, some peeled off and others became very discolored


I bought a white rubber paint to try

Rubber paint

The effect was very good

I am returning with modifications to the interior. It will be a long and tedious process, because I'm going to disassemble almost everything and replace the stereo with a 2DIN Android unit with a touchscreen, install a reverse camera, change the color of all buttons, indicators and clocks.

changing colour

After changing the brightness

on clocks

I wanted to change the colour

and all equipment

all buttons, clocks, indicators


Changing LED's from "orange" to BLUE

led desoldered

Changing LED's from "orange" to BLUE

new look

Changing LED's from "orange" to BLUE

Main console buttons

Main console LED's

Computer and speedometer

I even painted the "needle"

disassembly of the interior

Remake/rebuild the radio to keep the computer working

replacing main panel

Space for a 2DIN touch screen

Fun by the millimeters

Additional cabin lighting

The stereo with CD does not fit

CD OUT, it will be Android

Much more space

New longer connection tape

electronic board

Switch-On Board has the necessary plugs

sufficient space

It is enough to install new screen

Reverse camera installation

Reverse camera installation

Reverse camera installation

Reverse camera installation

reverse signal

Signal from the reverse gear lamp

finding place

Fit perfectly in place of the screw

perfect fit

Goes well with everything

Silicone glue

And tape to hold until dry


It is virtually unnoticeable


I had to use electronic filters

Place for tweeter speaker

Drilling out


Ready for speakers

Finishing installation

Almost ready

Bluetooth remote control

Drilling stering wheel covers

Looking good

Happy with the results

Working fine

continuous small engine oil leak

Machine-made thread repair did not yield a result

thread checking

Machine-made thread repair did not yield a result

damaged thread

I have to do it again


Additionally I sealed the gasket itself

metal epoxy

I give the day to dry


on slow rpm


This time only a manual tap

manual work

For increased thread quality

new thread

I threaded the whole piece

new thread

I threaded the whole piece

new thread

Looking much better than before

loctite seal

Loctite silicone on each edge and crease of the seal

loctite seal

Loctite silicone on each edge and crease of the seal

give time

For cure

and then

Next day


All bolts

rubbed tape

By shocks and vibrations

rubbed tape

By shocks and vibrations

replace tape

I put new pice

new tape

In two separate places

silicone liner

High temp. layered reinforced silicone

Back to wrapping. I have to fix the lower part of the rear bumper, because last time I put white vinyl stripes on the undone two parts and I want to fix it now.


White vinyl stripes

reattached parts

For better finish

putting together

Looking very good

complete bumper

without bumper

with bumper

checking seal

Everything is dry and in perfect condition

checking seal

Everything is dry and in perfect condition

day view

Successful color change of backlight LED's

night view

Successful color change of backlight LED's

The roof lining began to creak

Rubber bands are worn out

I glued felt rings

I glued felt rings

no installation date

I have no idea how old this battery is. Works fine yet, but no install date.

I change the battery

Just in case for new electronic equipment and Touchscreen to work well

greasy terminals

I always lubricates the battery terminals well with grease

both terminals with grease

I have practiced this with batteries all my life

prevent corrision

To prevent electrical corrosion, just like on the picture above

After a year since purchasing the car and making all the modifications, I had the opportunity to go to the very center of Europe (3200 km), which was a very good test for everything I did with this car. As you can expect, nothing I changed, did or improved in the car ended up breaking and the car bravely covered the whole route with very good combustion results, despite the tuned ECU. However, I must go back to my basic motto and quote it here again:

if you want something to be well done, do it yourself

Why do I mention it here and now?

The reason is simple. This is something that I have not touched on all this time, because before delivering the car to me, the previous owner had the brake discs and pads replaced and informed me about it. Everything looked like new, in fact. I didn't care about it at all - big mistake!

After driving 1750 km (on that journey) I started to feel vibrations in the steering wheel during braking. I was able to inspect my car's braking system at my friend's garage. I quickly came to the conclusion that there were some strange pits on the brake discs and one of the pads was very strangely worn. There was nothing left but to order new discs and new pads and replace them so that I could safely return to England.

brembo discs

Nothing to add, I ordered the best quality system

brembo pads

A world-famous company that deals with brake systems

Sport discs


ventilated discs


sport pads


that's the end of the modification of

Mini Cooper S R56 SPORT CONCEPT - 2019

gallery of the car