Most car enthusiasts would argue that the best supercar ever made was the McLaren F1. Since it’s launch back in 1994, many rivals had seen it as a benchmark for performance, but few have been able to best it.
Then the Bugatti Veyron came along and replaced all of the F1’s record, leaving Mclaren with a new performance bar to best.
Now the company looks poised to return to the ultra supercar game, to take the performance crowns it had lost. Rumors about a mega-McLaren have been circling the news since the MP4-12C was launched last year.
The new car, which is often referred to by its code name P12, is expected to be powered by a heavily revised version of the engine found in the MP4-12C, but running a larger displacement of 5.0-liters. This engine, which is being built in conjunction with Ricardo is expected to have an output of 799 hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. It will also have a derivative of the KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) system found in modern Formula-One cars. Power is expected to be fed to only the rear wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox by Graziano.
So far, much about this car has been speculation, but now for the first time, a test mule has been spotted. This mule, which is heavily camouflaged, does reveal a few interesting details. It shows that this new car is bigger and more aggressive than the MP4-12C, and unlike the original F1, it won’t have a central driving position.
There are already rumors that McLaren will be offering this mega-Mc in two body shells, standard and long-tail, just like the original F1(very few long-tail versions of the F1 exist, the extra body-work was developed mainly for providing extra high-speed stability for the racing version, but a few road cars were also made to satisfy FIA regulations).
This new supercar will be built at the McLaren Technology Center, not at the Woking factory that currently builds the MP4-12C. McLaren is expected to make a public debut of this $1.2-milion car later this year, production will start sometime next year and the models will be designated 2014MY.
So if you want one, better start saving up now.