Much like Lotus, McLaren has always been about keeping weight down to a minimum to maximize performance. Even the Artura with its intricate plug-in hybrid powertrain tips the scales at only 1,395 kilograms (3,075 pounds) in its lightest form before you add fluids. Unveiled today before arriving at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, its race car equivalent shaves off 130 kg (287 lbs) to comply with GT4 regulations that don't allow hybrids.
At the same time, the Artura GT4 is more than 100 kg (220 lbs) lighter than the 570S GT4 it replaces. Switching from a V8 to a more compact V6 has also contributed to the diet, and the six-cylinder unit alone is powerful enough to make the track-only machine competitive. The battery pack fitted to the road car has now made way for the 110-liter (29-gallon) fuel cell and ancillary drive system. By repurposing the same space, McLaren says that weight continues to be low and in the center for better balance.
Aside from the simplified powertrain, the Artura GT4 gets a different seven-speed gearbox to replace the eight-speed automatic in the road car where the electric motor is used for reverse. It gets shorter gear ratios than its predecessor along with a rear-mounted mechanical limited-slip differential while reducing brake wear at the back. Fuel consumption is also down, while braking cooling efficiency is up.
Naturally, the motorsport variant gets a far more aggressive aerodynamic kit enabling greater downforce compared to the outgoing 570S GT4. McLaren has conceived a bespoke front splitter and a new rear wing with seven levels of adjustability to fit various types of tracks. We're being told the race car is just as safe as the 720S GT3 from which it has inherited the driver's seat and adjustable pedals.
Before doing battle with the recently introduced 2023 BMW M4 GT4, the McLaren Artura GT4 will celebrate its public debut on June 23 at the Goodwood FoS in Sussex. Prospective buyers should know it's going to cost a cool £200,000 before options or about £10,000 more than the street-legal supercar.
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