New McLaren 650S Bridges $700,000 Price/Tech Gap Between 12C and P1 — First Orders Arrive Spring 2014

Surprising news from Woking today! It seems the more troubles the F1 team endures, the better the road cars get?

New McLaren 650S Bridges $700,000 Price Gap Between 12C and P1 -- First Orders Arrive Spring 2014 GIF

No, just kidding. It is not nearly that simple. But while the McLaren F1 team has not won a race championship in too-many years — the supercar range from McLaren is better every day.


The 650S surprised me because I thought the next car in line for McLaren was the P11, which is widely believed to be a bit cheaper and more accessible than the 12C.


That is not this car. The 650S slots in above the 12C coupe and Spider, and blends much of the latest P1 tech and styling in a more accesible package.

Should this car be thought of as a non-hybrid P1? Perhaps.


More accurately, this looks like a special 12C from most side and rear angles. That is not a bad thing at all.

I have been critical of the P1’s contrived lighting setup that matches the firm’s generic swoosh badge — but the appearance really cleans up nicely with painted bumpers and the latest LED lighting. Both are vastly modified versus the first P1’s spotted at Geneva originally.


The official images and details from McLaren are below ahead of Geneva next month. Hot times in Switzerland this Spring!

The 650S is finished and likely available to order from today for the first deliveries in May or June 2014. But act fast! McLaren’s expanding 20-strong U.S. and Canadian dealer network will surely be swamped with interest on this “Sypercar.”


(A blend of Super and Hyper car… into one awkward word:0

Final tidbit: the photos are tagged 650S Coupe — which leads me to believe a drop-top is in the cards as well for this latest Sypercar.


Official Details


New McLaren 650S Bridges $700,000 Price Gap Between 12C and P1 -- First Orders Arrive Spring 2014 GIF

  • Designed and developed to give the enthusiast driver the ultimate in luxury, engagement and excitement
  • The McLaren 650S will offer the widest breadth of capabilities of any supercar
  • Coupéand Spider, with electrically retractable hardtop, to be available from Spring 2014 launch
  • Joins McLaren’s range of supercars above 12C, which continues on sale
  • Uniquely enhanced active aerodynamics and ProActive Chassis Control systems optimise the capabilities and usability

McLaren Automotive will return to the International Geneva Motor Show this year with its fastest, most engaging, best equipped and most beautiful series-production supercar yet.

The McLaren 650S joins the range as an additional model alongside the 12C and sold-out McLaren P1™, and learns from both models as well as 50 years of competing in the highest levels of motorsport. Available as a fixed-head coupé or as a Spider, with a retractable folding hard top, the McLaren 650S promises to redefine the high performance supercar segment, and has been designed and developed to provide the ultimate in driver engagement on the road and on the race track.

The 650S badge designation refers to the power output – 650PS (641 bhp), – of the unique British-built McLaren M838T twin turbo V8 engine. ‘S’ stands for ‘Sport’, underlining the focus and developments made to handling, transmission, drivability and engagement.  Performance figures will be confirmed ahead of the Geneva Show but will improve on the already rapid 12C which continues on sale.


The design is inspired by the McLaren P1™, previewing a new family design language. The front bumper gives the McLaren 650S a dramatic, yet clean appearance and sits below new LED headlamps which reflect a similar look to the McLaren P1™. The more integrated front splitter contributes to increased levels of downforce, giving a greater level of steering feeling and confidence to the driver on turn-in, while also adding to the agility and the car’s handling balance. Unique door blades behind the front wheels direct air from the trailing edges of the front splitter, further benefiting front-end grip and vehicle balance.

The aerodynamic performance of the McLaren 650S is as efficient as the 12C, boasting the same drag coefficient figure, yet the air is being worked harder and more efficiently as it flows over, and through, the functional bodywork. At 150 mph, downforce levels are increased by 24 percent.

‘As always with McLaren, the new design is there for good engineering reasons,’says McLaren Automotive CEO Mike Flewitt.  ‘The newly designed front bumper improves downforce and steering turn-in. The high speed handling balance is now even better. The LED lights use less power and last longer.


Unique side intakes behind the dihedral doors feed large, efficiently packaged, radiators which help provide the cooling requirements of the mid-mounted, compact engine. A new design five-spoke lightweight forged ‘650S’ alloy wheel is unique to the model, and are fitted with Pirelli P Zero™ Corsa tyres to offer optimised roadholding, handling and driver feedback – the bespoke ‘MC1’ branded tyres have been developed alongside the McLaren 650S by McLaren technology partner Pirelli, and offer strong performance in normal road conditions and on track.

The McLaren 650S builds on experience from success on the track, and groundbreaking technologies fitted to other McLaren models. Active aerodynamics, which feature on both the 12C and McLaren P1™, have been further developed and honed to ensure the ultimate performance and ability for the McLaren 650S. The McLaren Airbrake, originally fitted to the 12C and 12C Spider and designed to offer optimised levels of downforce on the rear of the car, now operates with a greater level of functionality providing increased stability.  The newly developed system means the Airbrake deploys whenever the car senses extra downforce is advisable – rather than simply under braking or when manually operated in ‘Aero’ mode. Below the Airbrake, a distinctive rear three-piece bumper, similar to the GT3 racing version of the 12C, compliments the aerodynamic shaping of the McLaren 650S.

The pioneering ProActive Chassis Control (PCC) suspension system, developed by McLaren, has been further enhanced for the McLaren 650S. A feature of the system is the ability to adjust the ride and handling modes – Normal / Sport / Track – in isolation from the drivetrain, which gives complete freedom in terms of ride and handling. These settings, for both powertrain and suspension, have been recalibrated to improve driver engagement. The updates are especially noticeable in Sport mode.


‘McLaren is a fast moving company, continually striving for improvements and technical advantages. We are always seeking to innovate, to be the class leaders, to bring new technologies and thinking to market. That’s our Formula 1 heritage shining through,’ explains Mike Flewitt. ‘Everything we’ve learnt from the 12C and the McLaren P1™ has gone into the design and development of the McLaren 650S.’

The McLaren 650S is designed to be the best and most engaging driver’s car in its class, yet it is not a stripped out road racer. Ride comfort and refinement are to executive saloon standards. The McLaren 650S models are equipped with IRIS satellite navigation with Bluetooth telephony, DAB digital radio (SIRIUS satellite radio in North America), wireless tethering, audio streaming and voice control as standard, while also offering enhanced levels of optional specification than previously offered. Options include fixed-back carbon racing seats, based on the lightweight design found in the McLaren P1™, an electric steering column adjustment assisting ingress and egress, a rear parking camera and extended carbon fibre throughout the interior.

The global reveal of the McLaren 650S Coupéand Spider will take place on Stand 1240, Hall 1 at 12.00CET (11.00GMT) on Tuesday, 4 March 2014 at the 84th International Geneva Motor Show.


Notes to Editors:

A selection of high resolution images accompanying this release is available to download from the McLaren Automotive media site –

About McLaren Automotive:

McLaren Automotive is a British manufacturer of luxury, high-performance sports cars, located at the McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in Woking, Surrey.

Following the company’s global launch in 2010, McLaren Automotive launched the groundbreaking 12C and 12C Spider and, in keeping with its plan to introduce a new model each year, recently unveiled the McLaren P1™. The brand continues to expand, operating through a dedicated global network of retailers in every major automotive market.

McLaren Automotive Partners
To support the development, engineering and manufacture of its range of innovative and highly acclaimed sports cars, McLaren Automotive has partnered with world leading companies to provide specialist expertise and technology.  These include Akebono, AkzoNobel, ExxonMobil, Pirelli, SAP and TAG Heuer.

Designed for the track; Developed for the road

The connection between Formula 1 and road cars at McLaren is a natural process of experience, knowledge, principles and process transfer. Through the integration of 50 years of Formula 1 racing expertise and knowledge, and 20 years of heritage in producing landmark sports cars, McLaren Automotive designs, develops and builds the technologically advanced, groundbreaking and no compromise 12C, 12C Spider and McLaren P1™.

McLaren has pioneered the use of carbon fibre in vehicle production over the past 30 years, and since introducing a carbon chassis into racing and road cars with the 1981 McLaren MP4/1 and 1993 McLaren F1 respectively, McLaren has not built a car without a carbon fibre chassis.

New McLaren 650S Bridges $700,000 Price Gap Between 12C and P1 -- First Orders Arrive Spring 2014 GIF

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