McLaren commits to 'shocking' P1 successor 

When McLaren Automotive launched its Track22 plan in 2016, it was heralded as a hugely ambitious assault on the sports and supercar market for an automotive company that was barely out of short trousers. Two years on, and it's still knee-high to a grasshopper compared to its rivals - but also sufficiently optimistic to already think its master plan worthy of a sweeping update. 

Why? Well, mostly because of the changing sands that the entire industry finds itself on. McLaren is well-equipped to embrace a future filled with electrified powertrains, and its new Track25 business plan (because it extends to 2025) makes it clear that all its Sports and Super Series cars will be petrol-electric hybrids within six years. 

There will be many more of them, too. Between now and 2025, McLaren plans to launch 18 new models and derivatives - a number which doesn't even include the 600LT it showed publicly at Goodwood for the first time this weekend. The BP23 - the firm's heavily trailed middle-seater - is considered to be the first of the 18, and will launch next year. 

That car is a constituent of McLaren's Ultimate Series, and it is in the hypercar segment that the firm attaches a disclaimer to its all-hybrid game plan. That, you suspect, is because it remains unequivocal about pushing the boundaries of performance - particularly when it comes to track driving - and will still need an internal combustion solution to do that (as the Senna does now). 

Which brings us neatly onto the P1. McLaren's boss, Mike Flewitt, admitted that the question of its replacement was one of the most frequently posed to him by journalists - especially since the manufacturer has been so adamant that neither the Senna nor the BP23 weredirect successors. Track25 seeks to remedy that by confirming that the follow-up is now assuredly on the timetable, and will appear before 2025. 

What form will it take? Well, that remains in the ether. Privately, Flewitt suggests the car will be as 'shocking and surprising' as the P1 was, and will be the ultimate expression of all that McLaren holds dear. But the possibilities for its powertrain remain wide open, with at least three currently in contention. Track25 pointedly includes mention of the manufacturer's first forays into all-electric vehicles, although with a pledge to provide both 'superfast' charging and sufficient range for 10 full laps of Nardo, it doesn't come as complete surprise hear that the brand won't commit to an exact time frame for a zero-emission model.

It did admit to continuing research into synthetic E fuels - which are considered carbon-neutral and can be burnt in conventional combustion engines - although that's not necessarily for the foreseeable future either. Much more near term is the way autonomous driving systems will be absorbed by McLaren. A clear commitment to connectivity was professed (in an internet-of-things sense) but 'augmentation' rather than autonomy is the firm's stated objective - meaning that we should think of it in terms of AI-based driver coaching on a circuit rather than a car taking the wheel in the outside lane of a motorway. 

Finally, there was the glow of further world-conquering. McLaren already feels as though it is available in every market critical to supercar sales, and has plans to begin selling in both Russia and India in the near future. With its new Sheffield facility due to begin producing carbon fibre tubs next year and £1.25bn set aside for investment, Track25 confidently predicts that total production will increase to 6,000 cars a year by the middle of the next decade. By then it will still only be 15 years-old - and doubtless in possession of an even shinier plan for what comes next.

P.H. O'meter

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Comments (25) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Leonardo101 13 Jul 2018

    Oh joy another 7 years of Mclarens all looking the same, I like mclarens but hope they change thier design language!

  • Ed Straker 13 Jul 2018

    Like Porsche, for example.....

  • Leggy 13 Jul 2018

    Ed Straker said:
    Like Porsche, for example.....
    Rather see a few more of these than Porkers.....

  • bloomen 13 Jul 2018

    I've yet to see a modern Mclaren that moves me visually in the slightest, P1 included.

    They all look like fictional supercars from GTA V. You can tell it's a supercar but it's so... generic.

  • OpulentBob 13 Jul 2018

    MiKE FLEwitt?


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