McLaren Automotive has revealed its latest Ultimate Series road car, the ‘McLaren Senna’, effectively a replacement for the outgoing P1 and P1 GT-R as the most extreme car in the McLaren range of which 500 models are set to be produced.
The rear-wheel drive, two-seater ‘Senna’ features an ultra-lightweight construction, with a carbon fibre Monocage III chassis, carbon fibre body panels and a mid-mounted, twin-turbocharged V8 McLaren engine; the most powerful the Woking-based brand has ever produced. It’s the lightest road-legal McLaren since the F1 road car, weighing in at just 1,198kg.
With its lightweight construction, and monstrous engine, it produces a maximum power of 800PS (789bhp), with a power-to-weight ratio of 668PS per tonne. McLaren Automotive’s ambition for the McLaren Senna is for it to be the best road-legal track car, setting a new benchmark for circuit excellence with track prowess absolutely taking precedence.
“The McLaren Senna is a car like no other: the personification of McLaren’s motorsport DNA, legalised for road use but designed and developed from the outset to excel on a circuit. Every element of this new Ultimate Series McLaren has an uncompromised performance focus, honed to ensure the purest possible connection between driver and machine and deliver the ultimate track driving experience in the way that only a McLaren can.” Mike Flewitt, Chief Executive Officer, McLaren Automotive said.
Aerodynamically, the McLaren Senna introduces a new generation of ground-breaking front and rear active aerodynamics, raising downforce and aero control to an unprecedented level to ensure the performance potential can be fully exploited. Every element of the body design, from the front splitter to the double diffuser at the rear, has been developed to optimise downforce and aerodynamic balance, whether under braking, adjusting the throttle mid corner, or applying power on corner exit.
The rear also features a double diffuser. Created as a single piece of carbon fibre, it begins under the rear axle and as it increases in height accelerates air out from under the vehicle.
This creates a low-pressure zone that sucks the McLaren Senna even tighter to the ground. Equally unmissable is a huge, double-element carbon fibre rear wing that at its highest point sits 1,219mm from the road when the car is stationary. Hydraulically actuated and with a planform surface area of more than 6,500cm2, the wing constantly adjusts to optimise the levels of downforce and aerodynamic balance and functions as an airbrake under heavy braking.
Elsewhere, the car also has a RCC II double-wishbone suspension system, adaptive dampers, carbon ceramic brake discs bespoke Pirelli P Zero™ Trofeo R tyres.
“Our family is extremely proud of the naming of the new Ultimate Series McLaren Senna,” added brand ambassador Bruno Senna. “This is the first project that really connects with Ayrton’s racing spirit and performance. The McLaren Senna honours my uncle because it is so utterly dedicated to delivering a circuit experience that allows a driver to be the best they can possibly be.
“There is an absolute, seamless connection between car and driver and this pure engagement, these sensory cues that a driver responds to and relies upon, ensure an experience so focused and immersive that you are left in awe of the depths of excellence the McLaren Senna possesses.”
The ‘Senna’, which will cost £750,000, make its public debut in March, at the 88th Geneva International Motor Show. DSC readers will be particularly interested to see how this model progresses during its life cycle, as McLaren has a history of developing more extreme versions of its hypercars, including the GT-R versions of the F1 and P1 models!
Watch this space.