When we think of a brand like McLaren, a distinct silhouette of a two-seater, V8-powered, track-bred supercar that goes 0-60 in an unholy splice of time, is what comes to mind. But with the first roar of its iconic MP4-12C back in 2010, McLaren has moved beyond being an F1 maestro to creator of street-legal supercars. Combining two extremely diverse skill sets – lightweight engineering and luxury crafting – McLaren has now further cemented its new position with a brand new Grand Tourer. On the heels of its racetrack alter-ego, this luxury GT supercar packs not just 620-HP but also has a city-car design silhouette.
The recently unveiled Speedtail indicated the beginning of diversity and the idea of a ‘hyper GT’ experience. So what we have with this new launch is the first of many cards waiting to be turned. Of course, comparing the GT to the Speedtail would be absurd, but we can’t help but notice the similarities in design. However, within the company’s extensive and formidable arsenal, lies no trace of a focused GT car. The closest it has come to it is the still very much performance-based 570 GT. Until now.
The new GT marks a new category for Mclaren, and the brand has actually tuned down the engine a bit. Cutting off 100-HP from its predecessors, the GT boasts 620-HP and 630-NM of torque from its signature V8 engine, but this time, a 4.0-litre twin-turbo. Catching the light would be a breeze as it clocks in 0-100-kmph in 3.1 seconds, maxing out at 326-kmph.
The cock-pit is now a cruise-cabin, thanks to a new luxury treatment. The seats have been stitched out of soft-grain leather and are electrically adjustable and heated. Clubbed with six-colour ambient lighting and trim pieces designed to “look like a piece of satin metal”, McLaren also boasts a 12-speaker Bowers & Wilkins premium audio system. And let’s not ignore the 14.83-cubic-feet of luggage space out back.
The suspension of the GT relies on a version of the 720S’ Optimal Control Theory chassis, which uses signals from sensors to read the road ahead, predict what is likely to happen next, and adjust the dampers in just two milliseconds. In addition, three active steering modes are available – Comfort, Sport, and Track. The McLaren GT is expected to make a debut in India around autumn this year; there’s no official pricing as yet.
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