Skip advert
Advertisement

McLaren 650S GT3 revealed

McLaren GT unveils new 650S GT3 racer at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, the latest evolution of the 12C GT3

McLaren’s GT division has taken the wraps off its latest track-focused racer at the Goodwood Festival Speed, the 650S GT3.

It’ll cost £330,000 before tax and is set to enter production this autumn, arriving towards the end of the year in time to compete in 2015 GT3 championships.

Based on the road going 650S, and underpinned by the same lightweight carbon fibre MonoCell chassis, at first glance McLaren’s GT3 variant doesn’t look all that different. It’s clearly lower to the ground, and the massive fixed rear wing is a big giveaway, but up front the Woking-based manufacturer’s latest design language also sees a few revisions, including a distinctive splitter and larger air intakes.

Advertisement - Article continues below

These features are intended to offer improved aerodynamics and better cooling, which is why the flanks feature revised vents as well, whilst the all-new lightweight carbon fibre bodywork doesn’t match up directly with the 650’s outline.

Elsewhere there are changes to the suspension geometry, a slightly wider track – 52mm more than the 12C GT3 – and updates to the overall set-up, all with an apparent emphasis on endurance racing. 

Such innovations are partially there to compensate for a drop in performance over the standard production car. FIA regulations mean power is limited to approximately 493bhp, the same as McLaren’s current GT3 offerings, meaning the 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 produces 148bhp less than in the 650S.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement - Article continues below

A bespoke ECU is designed to compensate for this, offering better turbo boost integration and transmission shift control, and there’s a new six-speed sequential motorsport transmission, too.

The track focus continues at wheel level: the 650S GT3 rides on recently designed forged aluminium rims that are held in place on the motorsport axles by a single wheel retaining nut, and McLaren has fitted a newly-developed braking system to help keep things on the straight and narrow. 

As part of the improvements, safety has been given a boost thanks to an FIA-approved rollcage that’s lighter and more spacious than the one found in the 12C GT3.

Advertisement - Article continues below

McLaren’s attempts to make the cockpit a little more comfortable have likewise resulted in moulded race seat inserts that are mounted directly to the chassis, so that the driver adjusts the steering wheel and pedals to get settled into place. Backing this up is a redesigned layout that is apparently easier to use, plus a six-point race harness as standard.

Durability was also a key focus during development, and it’s claimed the 650S GT3 will cost less to own than its predecessor, thanks to a reduction in costs, increased component lifecycles and shorter repair times.

Given how appealing this all sounds, it’s no surprise that 12C GT3 owners will offered the chance to add upgrades and enhancements fitted to 650S GT3 models, as they share the same underpinnings. This is similar to the offer made to 12C owners when the standard 650S launched, and McLaren predicts such an investment will allow 12C GT3 cars to race competitively through a second GT life cycle.

Only around 15 examples of the all-new 650S GT3 are set to be built, although the optional upgrade package for 12 GT3 owners could see up to 30 cars running the latest McLaren GT design from next season.

Click here for our live Goodwood Festival of Speed coverage...

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

Brexit benefit: Porsche Boxster and Cayman axed in Europe, but survive in the UK!
Porsche 718 Cayman GTS - front cornering
News

Brexit benefit: Porsche Boxster and Cayman axed in Europe, but survive in the UK!

Cybersecurity regulations mean the Porsche 718-generation sports cars will be killed-off this year on the continent
27 Mar 2024
McLaren lifts the lid on how its future road cars will look
McLaren design sketches
News

McLaren lifts the lid on how its future road cars will look

With plans to enter new segments and all-electric power on the horizon, McLaren has reaffirmed its design strategy
27 Mar 2024
2024 Goodwood Festival of Speed: MG centenary celebration, dates and tickets
MG Cyberster and MGB parked outside Goodwood House - front 3/4 static
News

2024 Goodwood Festival of Speed: MG centenary celebration, dates and tickets

The Goodwood Festival of Speed’s central theme of ‘Horseless to Hybrid’ will celebrate over 130 years of engine tech in 2024, while also looking to th…
12 Mar 2024
Best new cars coming in 2024
Best new cars coming in 2024 - header image
Best cars & vans

Best new cars coming in 2024

There are some big new models from the likes of BMW, Citroen, Dacia, Ford, MINI, Skoda and more on the way in 2024
12 Mar 2024

Most Popular

‘Dacia Zen’ seven-year warranty brings added peace of mind
Dacia Duster - tailgate
News

‘Dacia Zen’ seven-year warranty brings added peace of mind

The value brand’s new warranty is also available on used cars, as well as for existing Dacia customers
16 Apr 2024
Car Deal of the Day: Mercedes EQC offers luxury EV motoring for £327 a month
Mercedes EQC - front cornering
News

Car Deal of the Day: Mercedes EQC offers luxury EV motoring for £327 a month

Mercedes’s EQC showed that the German firm was serious about electric cars and it’s our Car Deal of the Day for Monday 15 April
15 Apr 2024
New 2024 Audi A3 takes the fight to BMW and Mercedes with £32k price tag
Audi A3 Saloon - front action
News

New 2024 Audi A3 takes the fight to BMW and Mercedes with £32k price tag

The updated Audi A3 is available now, with the hot S3 version due from May
16 Apr 2024