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McLaren low-down on P1 GTR for Geneva

2015-02-19 08:32

STRIKING COLOUR: The track-dedicated McLaren P1 GTR is set to debut at the Geneva show. Image: Newspress.

  Gallery

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LONDON, England - The track-dedicated, 750kW, McLaren P1 GTR will debut at the 85th International Geneva Motor Show on March 3 (2015) in limited-production form with only minor modifications to the design concept presented six months earlier.

The most noticeable change is the livery that the Geneva show car will be wearing – one that will be available to the fortunate few who will be joining the McLaren P1 GTR driving programme that kicks off at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain later in 2015.

The design is homage to the yellow and green McLaren F1 GTR, chassis #06R, which has claimed its own place in history as one of the five F1 GTR cars that dominated the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the historic debut by McLaren 20 years earlier.

GLASS PANELS

The McLaren P1 GTR has completed an extensive and intense testing schedule across the world following the unveil of the design concept at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in the middle of 2014. This has produced enhancements to the original design to optimise aerodynamic performance and cooling.

The front track is 80mm wider than the road-going McLaren P1 and with its assertively profiled front splitter; the car also sits 50mm lower to the ground on centre-locking 19-inch motorsport alloy wheels shod with Pirelli slick tyres. 

The light windscreen from the McLaren  P1 road car, only 3.2mm thick, has been retained, while the side windows are now motorsport-spec polycarbonate with a sliding ‘ticket window’ on the driver’s side. The chemically toughened glass panels in the roof have been replaced with carbon-fibre panels to give the cabin a more cocooned environment, as has the engine bay cover.

The weight-saving measures on the McLaren P1 GTR combine to strip out 50kg from the road-going model.

GALLERY: McLaren P1 GTR

The rear of the track-only model is dominated, in contrast to the road-going McLaren P1, by the presence of a fixed-height wing which sits more than 400mm above the sculpted rear bodywork – an increase of more than 100mm of the adjustable wing on the road car.

Working in conjunction with the aerodynamic flaps ahead of the front wheels, the rear wing helps to increase downforce by more than 10% – meaning up to 660kg at 150km/h. Mounted on light carbon-fibre pylons, the wing can be trimmed from 32° to 0° at the push of the button.

Another bold and differentiating feature at the rear is the large twin exhaust pipes whose metallic make-up has shed 6.5kg from the already light road-going system.

Significant updates and modifications to the powertrain have been made beneath the ‘shrink-wrapped’ carbon-fibre body. At its heart, the McLaren P1 GTR seamlessly integrates the 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 petrol engine with an enhanced lightweight electric motor. Combined, they can generate 750kW - 80% from the engine, 20% from the motor.

TEST SESSION

The powertrain has been thoroughly revised for optimum performance on track, with key components replaced by motorsport-developed parts more suited to the sustained high speed running to which the cars will be subjected. In addition to this, features within the power train there for road use have been removed.

McLaren F1 GTR chassis #06R was campaigned successfully throughout the 1995 and 1996 seasons with Mach One Racing, and is one of the longest serving examples of the McLaren F1 GTR in competition. The Harrods-sponsored #51 was famously one of seven McLaren F1 GTR units to compete at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1995, and was driven to the podium by multiple Le Mans winner Derek Bell, his son Justin and Andy Wallace.

After this result, the team went on to win the final three races of the BPR Championship.

ULTIMATE SERIES

The first locations for the first McLaren  P1 Driver Programme have now been confirmed, and will see drivers attend an initial test session at Silverstone, England, followed by the first on-track activity at Circuit de Catalunya in Spain.

The McLaren P1 GTR joins the road-going McLaren  P1 in the Ultimate Series. This exclusive range prioritises aerodynamics and outright performance through notable advances in weight reduction, chassis and powertrain engineering and the use of pioneering materials.

The McLaren P1 GTR will make its global debut alongside the recently announced McLaren 675LT on Stand 1240, Hall 1 on March 3 2015 at the 85th International Geneva Motor Show.

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