FOCUSED. That’s a phrase that sums up Gordon Murray’s McLaren F1 road car. Designed to be totally drivercentric, the three-seat, 1137kg McLaren F1 sat the driver smack in the middle of the cabin, providing a panoramic view and optimal weight distribution.
Eschewing turbocharging in favour of large-capacity natural-aspiration, Murray asked BMW to design a bespoke 468kW 6.1-litre V12 to midmount, with razor-sharp throttle response a priority; the unmistakable induction noise was merely a by-product. A long-legged six-speed transmission. Manual steering.
Un-boosted brakes. Near-zero flywheel effect. There was no compromise.
There’s even gold leaf laid delicately as insulation in the engine bay. In contrast, its P1 spiritual successor is a tech-fest: turbocharged, hybridised and drivemoded.
It’s still-more accelerative and arguably as distinctive, but will we ever see a P1 command the approximately $16 million of the McLaren F1 of British entertainer Rowan Atkinson when it sold in 2015? Time will tell.