And accompanies the new car with a new one-make racing series.
McLaren firmly established itself as a racing brand first before building wheels for the road. Prior to the MP4-12C's modern debut, it had a reputation in Formula 1 going as far back as 1966. But in the modern era, where the brand has managed to build top-tier sports cars and supercars, there's been a heightened desire for amateur racers of substantial financial means. To cater to that demographic, the British automaker has unveiled its newest race car in the form of the Artura Trophy and launched a new one-make race series for these cars to compete in called the Pro-Am McLaren Trophy championship.
While based on the McLaren Artura road car, including using its carbon fiber monocoque, there are several differences. The biggest is that the Artura Trophy takes after the Artura GT4 in ditching the electric augmentation and relying solely on the bonkers-sounding 120-degree V6 engine.
Other similarities can be drawn to the Artura GT4, from the aerodynamics package and enhanced exhaust system to the extensive weight saving compared to the roadgoing car. But unlike the GT4, which sees its power outputs limited on a Balance of Power (BoP) basis, the Artura Trophy is delimited, letting amateur racers experience the full might of 577 hp.
The package's similarity to the GT4 racer gives amateur racers the ability to experience near-GT4 racing standards while honing their own driving skills further. It is mechanically suited to this setup as well, as the Bosch engine management system, inboard radiators, and rear deck that can be opened without removing the wing ensure the cars are easy to service and maintain.
When the Trophy series begins, teams will be sponsored by Pirelli to support the tire supply.
But what happens when your talent reaches the point where you want to compete in official GT4 racing? You'd have to buy a new car, right? Wrong.
The Trophy is developed to allow teams to tailor them to GT4 spec by employing software and aerodynamic adjustments, omitting the necessity to purchase a separate car for the occasion.
"I'm really looking forward to seeing the new Artura Trophy car in action," says Ian Morgan, Director of Motorsport at McLaren Automotive. "From my experience in both motorsport and at McLaren I genuinely believe that this is a great race car and a massive step on from anything we've ever produced before for this type of championship. There's nothing that exists currently to offer the same prospect to aspiring or professional and amateur GT drivers and already we've had huge interest in both the new car and the championship."
When the McLaren Championship starts, amateurs and professional drivers alike will benefit from McLaren Concierge service, designed to ensure a smoother experience so they can focus on racing. Things like hotel bookings and location transfers are included.
The new one-make series, set to kick off the 2023 season, the McLaren Trophy Championship will exist alongside Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe - a series where we already see cars like the Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo and Porsche 911 GT3 R competing in various categories. It will not be exclusive to Artura owners but also open to owners of the now-defunct 570S Trophy.
The European Calendar is set to begin in June of 2023 and run until October 1. A total of five weekends have been booked, racing at iconic circuits like Paul Ricard in France, Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium, Hockenheim in Germany, and Barcelona, Spain.