I know what you’re probably thinking by now: “Great, another not-so-new McLaren.” However, that’s not going to be the case with the Artura as the replacement for the 570S and the other Sports Series models is billed as a completely new car. The company’s boss claims “every element” is new, from the platform and hybrid powertrain to the interior design and the car’s name.
That being said, the leaked patent images and our own spy shots have suggested the exterior design will not represent a significant departure from the current designs. We won’t have to wait much longer to find out whether that’s actually going to be the case since the world premiere is scheduled to take place on February 16 in Europe (February 17 in China). A dedicated website set up by McLaren announces the big debut will be live-streamed online in a high-tech event enhanced with augmented reality.
Gallery: McLaren Hybrid Supercar Spy Photos
The first series-production McLaren hybrid will combine a twin-turbocharged V6 with an electric motor, with power from both sources delivered to the rear axle. It is believed the Artura will be a plug-in hybrid with roughly 20 miles (32 kilometers) of pure electric range, while the new McLaren Carbon Lightweight Architecture (MCLA) will compensate for the added weight of the batteries.
The Ricardo-built combustion engine and the electric motor are rumored to deliver a total output significantly above 600 horsepower to make the Artura a lot stronger than the 562-hp 570S. The instant torque of the e-motor will be an added bonus and should help negate the estimated weight gain of 20 to 30 kilograms (44 to 66 pounds).
It’s the dawn of a new era for McLaren and it goes to show not even supercar boutiques are immune to the downsizing trend, which in most cases comes associated with the adoption of electrification. It’s unclear whether Artura pricing will stay close to the outgoing 570S or the Woking-based marque will add a premium (most likely) due to the higher complexity of the powertrain.
It won’t be the first McLaren to eschew the alphanumeric naming scheme as the British niche brand has used names in the past, including Senna, Elva, and the more recent Sabre. Artura promises to deliver “super-light engineering, extreme power, electrification, and race-honed agility” to enable a “uniquely intense driving experience.”