But McLaren isn’t interested in using it to chase top speed records.
There’s a lot of mystery surrounding the McLaren Speedtail hypercar, formerly known as the BP23. Details about McLaren’s new Ultimate Series are still scarce, but we now know how much power it will produce. Speaking to Top Gear, McLaren’s head honcho Mike Flewitt confirmed the Speedtail will have more than 987 hp, making it the fastest road car McLaren has ever produced.
While the Speedtail will be a hybrid, it will adopt a “slightly different” setup to the P1. “What we focus on are attributes rather than engines,” Flewitt said. “I remember when we launched P1, people said we should have had a V12. That kind of missed the point – for us it was about what it did, and the character that comes out of it.”
But despite producing monumental levels of power, McLaren doesn’t see the Speedtail as a potential car that could set an outright top speed record to challenge the likes of Koenigsegg and Hennessey. “We’re not going for top speed for the sake of top speed,” he affirmed. “I spoke to my friend John Hennessey – he had his Venom F5 engine on a stand [at Monterey’s car week] – and he’s going for 300 mph. I might come out with John and take the opportunity to do a high-speed run with our car, but we’re not chasing a top speed for the sake of it.”
Why isn’t McLaren interested in chasing top speed records? Because the Speedtail isn’t just designed for top speed, it’s also a comfortable grand tourer you can drive over long distances. Flewitt added the Speedtail will be lighter and aerodynamic, and a “better driving proposition” than its competitors. We’ll have to wait until the McLaren Speedtail’s official reveal in October before production starts in 2019, but if you were hoping to buy one you’re out of luck. Even if you can afford the $2.2 million price tag, every model has already been sold.