McLaren P1 GTR extreme track weapon unveiled

16 Aug, 2014 2:15am Oliver Kew

McLaren reveals its P1 GTR – a “design study” for ultimate drivers’ car – at the Pebble Beach show

McLaren promised the P1 hybrid supercar would be the world’s best driver’s car on road and track – but now it’s ditched the constraints of road legality to create the banzai P1 GTR. The car seen here is an almost-ready design study to whet the appetite of 35 of the 375 P1 road car owners, who’ll be invited to buy the track-only GTR for an estimated £1.9m.

For that fee, McLaren builds you a tuned-up, hardcore P1 that isn’t eligible for road use. In return for the inconvenience, the twin-turbo V8 and electric motor powertrain is tuned from 903bhp to 986bhp – equivalent to 1000PS, or the output of the original Bugatti Veyron. But the P1 GTR isn’t hunting speed records – this is a machine designed for ultimate lap times.

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To that end, McLaren has stretched the P1’s front track by 80mm to increase front axle grip. This is further helped by an aggressive front splitter and the slick tyres, worn by 19-inch forged wheels with F1-style centrelock hubs. The inflated wheelarches lead into reshaped radiator ducts, while the all-new rear valance forces the air shooting out from the undertray trackwards to create even more downforce.

McLaren P1 GTR and F1 GTR

Adding to the aero package is a monstrous fixed rear wing in place of the P1 road car’s pop-up spoiler. The GTR does maintain drag-reduction ability to increase straight-line speed, but the wing’s extra width and slimmer supports are mainly intended to ramp up aerodynamic performance.

As the car pictured here is supposedly a design study, McLaren hasn’t yet disclosed the GTR’s increase in downforce over the road car’s record-breaking 600kg total. Even the wing mirrors have been relocated to the windscreen pillars to reduce drag.

McLaren P1 GTR back

The P1 GTR’s dramatic rear is dominated by two bazooka-sized exhaust pipes where the road car makes do with one flame-throwing tailpipe.  These pipes are fashioned from a heat-resistant nickle and titanium alloy, and is naturally unsilenced to make the most of the uprated V8’s soundtrack.

Though it won’t make the P1 GTR any faster, the livery is the stuff of McLaren legend – it’s inspired by the looks of the F1 GTR test car, which led on to a Le Mans-winning programme for McLaren in 1995. 

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