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R56 Should I consider an N14 factory JCW vs N18 S?

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R56 Should I consider an N14 factory JCW vs N18 S?

  #1  
Old 05-22-2018, 04:26 AM
frappucino
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Should I consider an N14 factory JCW vs N18 S?

Hi, I'm driving myself nuts debating between 2 different MINIs. There is a beautiful '11 factory JCW at my local dealership that I was within hours of buying but I realized suddenly that it was built in late 2010 and has the N14 rather than the N18.

A few years ago I did a bunch of research and decided to buy a justa because I couldn't afford the N18 examples that were available at the time, and was scared to buy an N14. These days I wouldn't be as screwed if my car had problems, but obviously I don't want to sign up for problems if they're inevitable as opposed to just somewhat more likely.

My question is, are the N14s really that bad, or is it forum bias since happy drivers don't complain on the internet? And is there any difference in reliability of the factory JCW N14? I keep thinking I would hate to pass on an otherwise wonderful car if thousands of people own these and drive them every day, not even knowing the bad reputation of these engines because they don't visit NAM or other sites which make it sound like they're $$$$$ repairs waiting to happen.
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 04:44 AM
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Having just bought a 2009 JCW Clubman with only 28K miles on it, I was wondering
the same thing, but decided to go ahead with it.
I'm really bonding with the car already, so I'm hoping for good luck with the engine,
especially the timing chain guide.
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 06:19 AM
MrBlah
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n18's are having all the same problems with one exception I've not heard about piston #3 failures with n18 tunes

stay on top of timing chain guides with both
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 02:54 PM
cargusjoh
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Another opinion... From reading the many forums here and other sites, and talking with a couple mechanics, it seems the N18s experience far less intake valve coking, oil consumption, and far fewer timing chain issues. There is a whole N14survivors site/page (anyone have the location?). I would pick the N18 S hands down. The N18 through April 2012 has a unique head for the Continental HPFP. For 2012 about May production forward you get the updated head with Bosch HPFP. Good luck what ever your decision!
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 03:00 PM
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I just ordered a BSH oil catch can which
may at least reduce the valve deposits.
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 03:13 PM
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My 2010 Clubman with the N14 engine has been completely trouble free since I bought it new.
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 04:22 PM
TheBigNewt
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FWIW I owned a 2007 MCS from new to 2014 and it was fine. It did burn some oil by the time I traded it in but no mechanical problems. HPFP failed but that was early under warranty they were a known issue.
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 05:37 PM
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I’m on my second N14 and love it. As with all cars, your smart to do your research but none of them are maintenance free. If your slightly mechanically inclined and don’t mind getting your hands dirty, the N14 will serve you well, as long as your maintain it properly. This is a super place to gain knowledge and get the right help when needed.
 
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Old 05-22-2018, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by cargusjoh View Post
There is a whole N14survivors site/page (anyone have the location?).
https://www.facebook.com/groups/713376242178096/
 
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  #10  
Old 05-23-2018, 04:00 AM
frappucino
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Thanks for the replies everyone! I decided to buy the N14.

You guys encouraged me and I also called a local shop that specializes in Mini and spoke to the owner (who had worked for the dealer for years and poached one of their best techs when he opened his own shop). He said basically exactly what you all said - you have to take care of them and be vigilant but N14s that have been taken care of shouldn't scare anyone away.

It's a convertible and of course it was raining when I took delivery but we were able to put the top down driving home after dinner last night. Absolutely no regrets. :D
 
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Old 05-23-2018, 05:14 AM
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My '09 JCW R55 has been by far the most expensive car to keep on the road that I've ever owned. Bought it well looked after with 38K, now 98K. Everything they say will go on it has along with some brutal surprises like a burned up exhaust valve-twice. I told the dealer it's the car I hate to love-good luck.
 
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Old 05-23-2018, 06:33 AM
jcwcoopster
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2009 JCW R56 with 82K miles and loving it. Its a BMW so diligent maintenance is required for an ownership experience of longevity
 
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Old 05-23-2018, 06:49 AM
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another +1 for the JCW N14 over a non-JCW


*find lots of horror scenes on the net .. aaaannd seems 9/10 are MCS not JCW (regardless of N14 or N18.. JCW's at least dont seem to go 'pop' as much)


81k mi on '12 R56 JCW now
 
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  #14  
Old 05-23-2018, 07:41 AM
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Congrats on the new Mini! The JCW N14 engine is a little different then the S. I believe the beefed up the block.
 
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Old 05-25-2018, 05:25 PM
Tigger2011
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Congratulations! Yep, reinforced webbing in the block and upgraded pistons. 65K+ plus miles here on N14 JCW. Two ninety one to the wheels with stock pistons and rods but I upgraded the rod bolts and head studs to ARP. Change your oil at 3k to 5k miles, then coolant and brake flush every two years. Preventative maintenance is the rule on any BMW product.
 
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