Senna reincarnated… in the shape of a Mclaren
It’s hard to believe that the McLaren P1 is already half-a-decade old. And with more competition than ever in the hypercar realm, McLaren needed to adapt or die. Meet the second member of the Ultimate Series – the McLaren Senna. Borrowing its name from the Grand Prix team’s greatest champion, Ayrton Senna, the hypercar will set owners back as R14-million. This buys you 588kW of power and a very large aero-wing.
According to McLaren’s Ultimate Series boss, Andy Palmer, the designers and engineers behind the Senna spent almost 2-years perfecting their carbon-fibre-monocoque-mid-mounted-twin-turbo-V8 recipe for the most brutal and hardcore road-legal car. As a result of all this R&D, the Mclaren Senna weighs just 1198kg, 220kg lighter than its 720S sibling. Add a 9% power boost to the 4.0-litre V8 and the final product is a power-to-weight ratio of 492kW per tonne.
This is usually the part where we include acceleration and lap times, but unfortunately, McLaren won’t be revealing these until January of 2018. We can expect a 0-100km/h time of around 2.5-seconds, on par with the P1, along with a top-speed in excess of 320km/h. These speeds are accompanied by some serious downforce and aerodynamics. There are active-aero bits all around the Senna to keep it planted and a massive pylon-mounted rear wing that adjusts by up to 20 degrees, depending on the driving mode. This provides high-speed downforce, braking drag and a “DRS mode” for when the car is going fast in a straight line.
The interior of the Senna is just as focused on lap-times as the exterior, with lightweight materials and weight-reduction the order of the day. McLaren is so serious about weight-reduction that each Senna will be built around the custom dimensions of the owner. McLaren even considered leaving out the passenger’s seat as a weight-saving measure but decided against it since many owners would prefer to drive to the track with a passenger.
The latest McLaren will make its International debut at the Geneva motor show in March 2018 and will enter production in Q3 of 2018, with the first batch of the 500 exclusive hypercars being delivered by end-2018. If you haven’t already ordered your Senna, it’s too late. The last car in the production run was recently auctioned at a special unveiling-event for customers, where it was sold for a whopping R37-mill as part of a charity fundraiser.