Published on October 24th, 2013 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
McLaren P1 Is Ready For You
McLaren has delivered its first hypercar to a very happy customer at company’s headquarters in Woking, England. Each McLaren P1 is equipped with a twin powerplant powertrain that generates 903 bhp from its 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 petrol engine and a lightweight electric motor. With these numbers, McLaren P1 sprints from 0 to 100 km/h in 2.8 seconds, to 200 km/h in 6.8 seconds and to 300 km/h in 16.5 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 350 km/h or 217 mph. Despite these numbers, the McLaren P1 hypercar has a fuel consumption of 8.3 l/100 km on the EU combined cycle and CO2 emissions of just 194 g/km. The electric motor provides a range of 11 km or 6.8 miles. Braking figures are also impressive as thanks to the specially formulated carbon ceramic discs coated in silicon carbide can stop from P1 from 100 km/h in a distance of 30.2 metres.
“We designed the McLaren P1 from the outset with one clear goal: to be the best driver’s car on road and track. The confirmation of the performance figures underlines this.” “I am very proud of our Woking based team and everything they have achieved with this ambitious project. The handover of the first McLaren P1 is another milestone in our 50 year history,” commented Mike Flewitt, CEO, McLaren Automotive Ltd.
The astonishing technology developed for the McLaren P1™ includes active aerodynamics and adjustable suspension – both now banned in Formula 1, due to being seen to give a performance advantage. Airflow is optimised around the body through the use of an active wing and underbody devices. The adjustable rear wing can extend from the bodywork by 120mm on road, up to 300mm on the race track, maximising the levels of downforce. The wing is directly inspired by Formula 1 design, with the intersection of the double element rear wing and design of the endplates being the same as that on the 2008 championship winning MP4-23.
In addition, the McLaren P1™ also features adjustable ride height as part of the new hydro-pneumatic suspension. The revolutionary RaceActive Chassis Control (RCC) can lower the car by 50mm in Race mode, to produce ground effect aerodynamics. It also features adaptive spring rates, roll control, pitch control and damping, all providing a huge range of adjustment, making the McLaren P1™ perfect for either road or track. In Race mode, the spring rates stiffen by 300 per cent, allowing the McLaren P1™ to corner at more than 2g.
Formula 1-inspired technology permeates the McLaren P1™. The revolutionary new carbon fibre MonoCage monocoque forms a complete structure incorporating the vehicle’s roof and its distinctive snorkel air intake – a styling feature inspired by the McLaren F1 road car.
McLaren is an acknowledged world leader in carbon technology. The material offers lightness, strength and rigidity – improving performance, safety, handling, agility, durability, efficiency and ride comfort. The body panels of the McLaren P1™ are also made from lightweight yet strong carbon composite, with their complex shapes tuned for optimal aerodynamics.
The McLaren P1™ was designed from the outset to prioritise aerodynamic performance – just like a Formula 1 car. As with a Formula 1 car, wind tunnel testing and CFD (computational fluid dynamics) aerodynamic modelling were used to optimise the aerodynamic flow, both to provide incredible levels of downforce and to cool the powertrain. The result is 600kg of downforce at well below maximum speed (257 km/h / 161 mph) in Race mode, which is considerably higher than most other high performance supercars, and more in line with the levels of downforce generated by a GT3 racing car. This downforce improves the car’s cornering ability, especially in high speed corners. Balance, agility and controllability are all outstanding.
Other areas of Formula 1 technology evident on the McLaren P1™ include the revolutionary layered carbon ceramic brakes, developed for the road by McLaren’s Formula 1 partners Akebono. The highly efficient IPAS (Instant Power Assist System) is a development of KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) used on Formula 1 cars, while DRS (Drag Reduction System) is also used on the McLaren P1™, giving extra power and straight-line speed both at the touch of a button. Brake Steer – an outlawed Formula 1 technology – is also used on the McLaren P1™. It improves cornering behaviour and cornering speed.
‘The carryover Formula 1 technology on the McLaren P1™ is palpable,’ notes Dick Glover, Research Director. ‘From the aero work, to the carbon fibre MonoCage monocoque and body, to the active suspension [now banned in Formula 1] to the Brake Steer [now banned in Formula 1], to the turbocharging [which comes back into Formula 1 in 2014], to many other engine examples including the low crankshaft and dry sump lubrication.’
The IPAS petrol-electric powertrain also ties in with upcoming Formula 1 regulations. From next year (2014), Formula 1 cars will have hybrid power, including an electric mode for the pit lane.