McLaren Super Series
Which car from McLaren's Super Series would you go for?
McLaren is the UK’s fastest expanding car firm.
Since it injected lots of money into making supercars a few years back, the Surrey-based company has produced some of the most desirable vehicles in the world. McLaren can now go head-to-head with Ferrari and Lamborghini in terms of it being a sought-after supercar marque.
It currently has the following models in its Super Series stables – and they’re bound to appeal to adoring, affluent, automobile addicts.
This supercar costs £207,900 and is almost too much to take in. It’s so sexy that you feel faint with desire. Get near enough to sniff it and you’ll want to get right in there. It’s impossible not to like this motor, even if you don’t normally ‘do’ cars.
The 720S’ headlights have been fashioned to allow optimal air-flow; but peer closer and you’ll see there isn’t one element of this McLaren’s body that hasn’t been hewn for this top air-flow objective. The more you stare at it, the more striking it gets. And it’s even more pleasing to know that it’s not been conceived to be just beautiful. It is molded by the very air we inhale.
The engine is housed centrally and the V8 lump is a real gem. The twin-turbo powered 4.0-litre unit produces 720PS – and that last figure is why McLaren calls this car the 720S. Simple, but effective.
This potent engine is hooked up to a seven-speed automatic transmission that you can also control using paddles on the wheel. All this takes the McLaren 720S to 212mph. It’ll also do the zero to 62mph sprint in 2.9 seconds.
The £261,555 675LT is utterly awesome and is, in my opinion, better looking than Ferrari’s 458 Speciale.
It’s lighter, quicker and tougher, than the 650S (which we’ll look at in a minute) – and the 675LT is best appreciated on a track, but it is still incalculably pleasing on the public highway.
The car’s 3.8-litre 675PS engine (you’re getting the hang of the reasoning behind the names now, right?) will do 0-62mph in 2.9 seconds, and it maxes out at 205mph.
Behind the wheel, the 675LT feels refined. The supercar has a low-slung cowl so it’s stress-free to place on the tarmac. The carbon-sheathed chairs look and feel resplendent, and the driving arrangement is just what the doctor ordered.
The McLaren is agreeable to get in and out of, and the ergonomic hiccups that bugged McLaren’s old 12Cs have been eliminated. The cabin is still sparse, so things, like air conditioning, don’t exist. But that’s how it should be – keeping the car lightweight is key.
Being bonkers is what this supercar is all about really. You just need to be rich to own one…and maybe a bit bonkers yourself. Count me in. Now, where’s that lottery ticket?
McLaren 650S Coupe
This dramatic-looking car was the replacement for the 12C, and, boy, does it deliver. The 3.8-litre V8’s 650 horses send the 650S Coupe from 0-62mph in 3.0 seconds and on to 207mph.
Select a middle cog, relax into mid revs, and get ready to be gob-smacked. Stamp on the accelerator pedal and the performance is staggering.
The 650S Coupe has a mass of mid-range pulling power that merges into a torrent of muscle, blazing in the direction of 8500rpm. This is brawn well ahead of any V10 Lamborghini or V8 Ferrari. It also sounds like a werewolf on the prowl for fresh meat.
Change to the Track setting (preferably while on a track) and the 650S Coupe’s body control is as tight as your underpants after a Christmas meal. Yes, the tail whips around under power, but that’s a great thing – you feel you’re in a proper supercar cavorting around the thresholds of grip.
But for all its velocity, this £195,000+ 650 S Coupe is a supercar you could use every day. It has good visibility, and when you’re not giving it the beans it’s more planted and comfortable than many sporting cars on the market.
McLaren 650S Spider
You’ve read about the Coupe, and now to the convertible version of the 650S. Well, this drop-top supercar really is the dog’s danglies – if open-top motoring madness is your thing.
The 650S Spider comes with a foldaway hard top that hides itself in just 17 seconds. It’ll even disappear on the move, as long as you’re not driving faster than 19mph.
Indeed, this convertible drizzles on the chips of its nemesis, the Ferrari 488, because, thanks to the robustness of it using carbon, it requires no extra reinforcement. This means the roof is as unbendable as the tin-topped Coupe, and only weighs an additional 40kg.
So, guess what? The McLaren Spider drives the same as its hard-roofed sibling. Try as I might, I couldn’t identify any superfluous steering kickback or even a morsel of chassis vibration. The car seems supernaturally gifted. And it handles with the same poise and precision as the coupe. 0-62mph is done in 3.0 seconds, and the top speed is a shade slower than the Coupe at 204mph.
You’ll not be shocked to read that the 650S Spider kicks out 650PS, and even with its added 40kg, performance never feels compromised. The only thing you notice is more road and wind noise.
Luckily, there’s an excellent wind deflector which is really the electrically-powered rear window, but it suppresses sound well. With it down, the 3.8-litre V8 does its best to deafen you – as do the elements.
The 650S Spider costs around £20,000 more than the coupe, but if you like the wind in your toupee, you’ll not care. With the roof dropped, you’re exposed to more automotive theatre – and I happen to love that.
You are one very fortunate person if you can find the money for a McLaren. They are staggering works of automotive art and we Brits should be bursting with pride that they’re made here.
Let’s hope that the UK’s most rapidly expanding car operation carries on building wonderful machines like these.
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