LOW, LEAN, AND FIERCELY LITHE, MCLAREN’S FIRST SERIES PRODUCTION HYBRID SUPERCAR, THE ARTURA, IS A DAZZLING INTERSECTION OF TIME-TESTED PURISM AND NEXT-GEN FUTURISM
BY AMANDA MCCOY
Last February, McLaren released details on the upcoming Artura in what CEO Mike Flewitt dubbed a “landmark moment” for the fabled British marque. The new entry level McLaren of course, tossing around labels like “base” and “entry” in supercar circles is practically a lesson in satire marked several firsts: the maker’s first series production hybrid supercar, the debut of a brand new proprietary chassis, and the first time a V-6 would be used to power a Speed tail out of Woking, England.
On paper, a 3.0L V-6 doesn’t exactly induce salivation, but a deeper look reveals the M630 powertrain is indeed a ferocious beast (and a playground for car nerds). First, the displacement layout a 120-degree V that isn’t much less wide than at six is extremely uncommon and in fact has never been done outside of track-only racers. According to L Artura’s chief engineer Geo Grose, the 120-degree angle contributes to an ultra-low center of gravity and increases engine performance by reducing the pressure loss through the exhaust system. The performance numbers are impressive: alone, the twin turbocharged engine pulls 575 horsepower (nearly 200 ponies per liter), and paired with the 7.4 kWh battery, the system delivers a grand total of 671 hp and 531 lb.-ft. of torque. The E-Motor also serves instant torque of up to 166 lb.-ft. for the sharpest throttle response ever from a McLaren supercar. Pilots will fly from standing to 60 mph in three seconds flat and reach 124 mph in 8.3 seconds. Peak power is derived at 7,500 rpm, but as an added bonus for enthusiasts, the engine spins to 8,500 rpm for what Grose dubbed “high-revving theater.” Slow clap
The vehicle does also boast a front trunk with six cubic feet of luggage space. The styling is quintessentially McLaren, characterized by sleek, sculpted curves and generous use of carbon fiber. The stance is all supercar: low-nose, cab-forward, high-tail, and the body was “superformed” as one panel to minimize body shutlines and panel joints for wind-slicing aerody namics. McLaren’s signature scissor doors are standard, and the side mirrors fold in more tightly than past models. The Artura will also feature another McLaren first: semi-autonomy. Optional technologies include Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop/Go; Lane Departure Warning, High Beam Assist, and Road Sign Recognition. Intentionally missing, however, is any form of steering assist. The maker’s trademark hydraulically assisted steering, famed for highly immersive feedback, is the only option, proving the Artura was built for those who crave the track.
Are a hallmark of McLaren design, and the Artura is no exception. There are no buttons on the steering wheel, and almost every driver function can be controlled via an eight-inch vertical touchscreen.
THE ARTURA WILL DEBUT MCLAREN’S BRAND NEW CARBON LIGHTWEIGHT ARCHITECTURE (MCLA),
A high-strength, carbon-intensive platform designed specifically for hybrid supercars. It’s the first architecture to be manufactured at the McLaren Composites Technology Centre (MCTC), which opened in Rotherham, England, in late 2018.
THERE ARE DOZENS OF EXTERIOR COLORS
To choose from, including several Elite and MSO options that run the gamut from brooding and refined to wildly prismatic. Pictured here is the Elite Flux Green.
THERE IS A SHORT EV RANGE
On the table, as the Artura can travel 19 miles on E-Mode.
PILOTS CAN CHOOSE BETWEEN FOUR POWERTRAIN MODES:
E-mode for electric-only; Comfort, which maximizes range and efficiency by shutting off the combustion engine under 25 mph; and for the power hungry, Sport and Track modes, which deploy electric power for low-end response and acceleration.
A MIDNIGHT BLACK ALACANTARA INTERIOR
Comes standard, with three upgrade packages available: Performance, Techlux, and Vision. Premium options include Extended Nappa Leather, off-piste accents, contrast hand-stitching, and bright color contrasting accents.
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