McLaren Officially Unveils 650S


Coupe and Spider variants to debut in Geneva before going on sale later this year.

After some grainy photos leaked online, McLaren has officially introduced the new 650S that will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in both fixed-head coupe and Spider guise. For a few extra grand (McLaren says £20,000 in the UK), buyers of the 650S will get a load more standard gear than the 12C including new five-spoke lightweight alloys wrapped in bespoke Pirelli rubber, P1-inspired LED headlights, an Alcantara-clad interior, carbon-ceramic brakes, and a new screen-based audio system with revised sat-nav and SIRIUS satellite stereo.

Options include fixed-back carbon racing seats based on those found in the P1, a rear parking camera and a carbon-fiber interior package. Named after the metric horsepower the 3.8-liter turbo V8 generates, with ‘S’ standing for ‘Sport,’ the 650S comes with modified cylinder heads and pistons, as well as a revised ECU to deliver 641 hp and 500 lb-ft of torque – up from 616 hp and 443 lb-ft in the 12C. Coupled with a seven-speed dual-clutch auto box with quicker, better-controlled gearshifts, the 650S can rocket from 0-62 mph in 3.0 seconds (down from 3.3) and top speed climbs from 205 to 207 mph.

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Unique design features include a new front bumper and more integrated front splitter that offers increased downforce and better steering feel on turn-ins. At the rear, a newly developed Airbrake system, designed to optimize rear downforce, now employs whenever the car senses it is needed, instead of whenever the driver brakes or when manually operated in ‘Aero’ mode. McLaren says downforce has increased by 24 percent at 150 mph, 40 percent at peak, and is better balanced front to rear. Below the Airbrake, a three-piece bumper similar to the GT3 racing variant is another feature of the car’s aerodynamic styling. The McLaren 650 S Coupe and Spider will be unveiled on March 4 at Geneva.