McLaren GT Examined Up Close In Top Gear Video Tour

The new McLaren GT is a supercar designed for comfort and speed

ritish supercar company McLaren makes great sports cars. They’re fast, loud, responsive and they look like spaceships. But, unlike Ferrari or Aston Martin, the company has never really made a grand touring car that’s designed for comfort as well as speed.

mclaren has revealed its unique interpretation of a modern ‘grand tourer’ — a luxury vehicle designed for long distance, high-speed driving with room for luggage. described as sleek, elegant, and muscular, the superlight mclaren GT seeks to challenge the conventions of the grand tourer category with a blend of beautiful design, high-quality materials, supercar performance, and mclaren driving dynamics. ‘the new mclaren GT combines competition levels of performance with continent-crossing capability, wrapped in a beautiful body and true to mclaren’s ethos of designing superlight cars with a clear weight advantage over rivals,’ says mike flewitt, chief executive officer, mclaren automotive.

the car, which is the first true grand tourer in the mclaren product family, has been designed for a new audience and provides an alternative to existing products in an expanding market segment. like all mclarens, the vehicle has a carbon fiber structure that possesses exceptional strength and rigidity, while enabling unparalleled driving dynamics and lightest-in-class kerbweight, (at 3,232lbs (DIN), the mclaren GT is more than 286lbs lighter than its closest core competitor). with 612bhp from its 4.0-liter, twin-turbocharged v8 engine, the power-to-weight ratio of the GT is 399bhp-per-ton. this helps the GT race from 0-60 mph in 3.1 seconds, 124 mph in 9 seconds, and up to a maximum speed of 203 mph (327 kph).

‘the new mclaren GT combines mclaren’s design philosophies with classic grand tourer visual cues,’ explains rob melville, design director, mclaren automotive. ‘bold, elegant volumes flow seamlessly from nose to tail, encapsulating the beautifully crafted cabin. the sophisticated, sculpted body expresses both the power of the car and its ability to cosset occupants during long-distance driving.’

‘the teardrop shape of the cabin, which stretches back to encompass the rear luggage area, follows the aerodynamic principles inherent in all mclarens, while the muscular rear fenders that form the side intakes for the high-temperature radiators are an example of how we merge both beauty and functionality to create breath-taking authentic designs,’ melville continues. ‘the new mclaren GT clearly stands out both as a new type of mclaren and a cutting-edge interpretation of a grand tourer for a new era.’

the car’s bespoke monocoque incorporates a carbon fiber rear upper structure that adds minimal weight but allows the creation of a 14.8 cubic feet luggage area below the front-hinged, full-length glazed tailgate. the tailgate itself has a soft-close function as standard and can be optioned as electrically powered. meanwhile, the low height of the engine and positioning of the exhaust system has allowed the volume, shape and usability of the luggage bay to be optimized. a golf bag or two pairs of 185cm skis and boots as well as luggage can be carried with ease, while a further 5.3 cubic feet of storage at the front means the new mclaren GT can accommodate a total of 20.1 cubic feet.

the interior has been thoughtfully designed for long journeys, but with all the essentials for focused, high performance driving. the streamlined, electrically adjusted and heated seats, which are unique to the mclaren GT, have been engineered to meet the requirements of long-distance comfort in terms of padding and support. the car’s infotainment system is also the company’s most sophisticated to date. the driver interface operates in a similar way to a smartphone and the seven-inch central touchscreen is used to select from vehicle functions such as satellite navigation, bluetooth telephony, media streaming, and voice activation.