McLaren P1 Supercar Unveiled Ahead Of Geneva Debut

Following the slow release of numerous teaser images as well as an equal amount of leaked information, McLaren has officially taken the wraps off of its latest supercar effort, the McLaren P1.  This impressive machine brings new technology and performance to the brand while also following in the legendary footsteps of its predecessor, the iconic 1992-1998 McLaren F1.

The exterior styling of the McLaren P1 retains many of the themes seen on the smaller MP4-12C supercar, but McLaren stylists have made the overall look much more exotic in appearance thanks to a number of radical styling tweaks. A stylish, purpose-built front end with incorporated front splitter gives the P1 a distinct face while the sleek headlights mimic and embody the company’s familiar boomerang logo for an added dash of performance-oriented flair. Graceful character lines lead careful observers to the back of the P1 where a large diffuser and a high mounted race inspired central exhaust system further solidify the P1’s purpose as a race-ready super car.

The interior of the P1 continues the race-oriented theme and was designed to make occupants feel like they are sitting in the cockpit of a fighter jet, thanks in part to an all-glass roof as well as a specially-designed windshield that is actually taller than it is wide. Continuing the driver-focused theme of the interior, McLaren stylists kept the amount of equipment and switchgear in the cabin to a minimum, which allows the driver to remain focused especially when piloting the P1 at the local racetrack. The interior also contributes to the car’s weight-shedding program, with nearly every component made entirely out of lightweight carbon fiber. In addition to the copious amounts of carbon fiber, McLaren engineers also utilized several creative techniques for cutting even more pounds from the P1 which include removing the top layer of resin from all interior carbon fiber pieces as well as producing the car without any form of standard carpeting (for those who are curious, carpet is available as an optional extra.)

Performance for the P1 comes from a variant of the same 3.8 liter twin turbocharged V8 that powers the MP4-12C, but in the case of the P1, the company’s engineers have paired the powerful engine with a new race derived KERS energy storage system that shoots power up from an already potent 616 horses to a mind boggling 903 horsepower (a gain of 287 horsepower) and an equally astounding 660-lb-ft of torque (a gain of 217 lb ft). All of this raw power allows the P1 to make the dash to 60 mph in a swift 2.8 seconds with 100 mph blowing by in an equally impressive 5.5 seconds before finally reaching a top speed of 200 mph. While top speed was not a priority when work was begun on the P1, McLaren claims that the car can go from 0 to 200 mph in a stopwatch-busting 20 seconds flat, which is very impressive for a high end super car and should make the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini green with envy.

In addition to its track busting performance numbers, The P1 will also offer occupants world class handling characteristics thanks to its lightweight carbon fiber body structure as well as a push-rod suspension system which is somewhat similar to the system offered in the Lamborghini Aventador. Other goodies include adaptive dampers, hydraulic anti-roll control, and a state of the art traction control system.

Interested in putting a McLaren P1 in your garage? Production of this remarkable vehicle will be limited to only 375 units with each P1 custom fitted for the driver and passenger. Pricing for the 2013 McLaren P1 will begin at £866,000 which is equivalent to a lofty $1.3 million USD when current exchange rates are applied.

Author: Carl Malek

Carl Malek is Autosavant’s resident German car fanatic and follower of all things General Motors. Carl first entered the world of automotive journalism as a freelance photographer during his freshman year of college before making the switch to automotive writing several years later. Carl developed an interest in cars at an early age, which helped him overcome the challenges of a learning disability in mathematics. In addition to writing for Autosavant community, Carl also contributes to many car forums and enjoys attending automotive events in the Metro Detroit area with his family. Carl’s message for others with learning disorders is to believe in yourself, be persistent, and face all challenges head on.

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