McLaren is in the midst of completely rebooting its lineup as it prepares to enter a new era defined by tightening fuel regulations and the challenges brought by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But while some aspects of its future plans have slipped out over the past few months, it appears that the company still had a surprise up its sleeve with the unexpected debut of the McLaren Sabre. This ultra exclusive two seater talks a big game and boasts the horsepower figures to shake up the scene. Here’s 3 key things to know about the McLaren Sabre.
It really was a surprise
Unlike other McLaren models, we don’t have the full scoop on the Sabre from McLaren themselves, with the world only learning about it from a few images of the first customer car that were dropped on the internet by McLaren of Beverly Hills. The images reveal a car that is a sleek interpretation of speed with the white on red body featuring a number of features to help provide plenty of downforce when the Sabre is blasting its way down the race track. McLaren did confirm that the Sabre is a customer commissioned car with all 15 buyers being extensively involved at all stages of the development process (more on that later.)
One lone image is all we get as far as a glimpse at the interior goes, but it does show a pair of stylish red and black sport seats nestled into a space that also flashes a bit of carbon fiber to the camera. If the Elva is any indication of things, the Sabre is expected to bring a commendable amount of luxury to buyers including a healthy infusion of technology.
Sabre doubles down on power
Like other McLaren models, the Sabre is powered by a 4.0 liter twin-turbocharged V8 which produces 824 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque. That’ s 20 horses more than the Elva roofless roadster and that makes the Sabre the most powerful non-hybrid McLaren ever built. Acceleration figures are not available for the Sabre, but it’s known that the bespoke two seater can hit a top speed of 218 mph.
That’s enough to make the Sabre a very potent weapon out on the track and when you combine that with the amount of aerodynamic enhancements that are splashed through out the exterior the Sabre makes a very compelling case for itself. That’s important since the Sabre will be a U.S. exclusive with McLaren revealing that the Sabre has some features and ideas that would typically not fly in either the European or Asian markets.
Customer input throughout the development process
Unlike other models that the British supercar maker has released over the years, McLaren revealed that the 15 lucky Sabre buyers had a very high degree of involvement during the car’s development process. All 15 buyers had the chance to build a relationship with MSO’s team of designers, engineers, and test drivers as part of a broader attempt to build each Sabre to their unique specifications.
McLaren even went through the trouble of flying the Sabre test mules to the Thermal Club in California where they had the chance to drive them around the track. Feedback from these drives was then used to further hone the development process of the Sabre. This is a bit unusual even by McLaren’s standards, with this kind of feedback usually being received after the customer receives their finished car.
When Can I Buy a Sabre?
In this instance, the bulk of the world is too late when it comes to buying one for their garage. As mentioned earlier, the company built only 15 examples of the Sabre, and other than the one that appeared in Beverly Hills, it’s unknown where the remaining 14 went to. As a result, there’s no pricing information available, but we’re confident that the Sabre’s price tag is just as wild as some of its performance numbers.
Carl Malek has been an automotive journalist for over 10 years. First starting out as a freelance photographer before making the transition to writing during college, his work has appeared on numerous automotive forums as well as websites such as Autoshopper.com.
Carl is also a big fan of British vehicles with the bulk of his devotion going to the Morgan Motor Company as well as offerings from Lotus, MG, and Caterham. When he is not writing about automobiles, Carl enjoys spending time with his family and friends in the Metro Detroit area, as well as spending time with his adorable pets.