As we’ve reported before, Ron Dennis has given up his F1 commitments to concentrate on McLaren Automotive. And the first real evidence of the work McLaren Automotive are doing will come with the launch of the McLaren P11, which our McLaren source says will be on 9th September. So, only a few weeks away.
Ahead of the launch of the P11, McLaren are pushing on with testing the P11, and our picture here is of the P11 pounding round the Nurburgring in final testing.
The McLaren P11 is the first stage of McLaren’s plans to launch a range of three new cars in the next few years. The P11 is aimed directly at the new Ferrari 458 Italia and the Lamborghini LP560-4. It is mid-engined and draws on the technology McLaren has developed for its hugely successful F1 programme, including in particular their work with composites, which will make the P11 very stiff and very light.
Following on from the P11 will be the ‘Baby’ McLaren which will be targeted further down the food chain at the likes of the Porsche 911 and Audi R8. This is what McLaren consider to be their ‘mainstream’ car; the one that will bring in the bulk of the sales.
But the car petrolheads are looking forward too the most is the replacement for the legendary McLarenF1. The original McLaren F1 is still considered by many to be the ultimate hypercar of all time, so McLaren will have to do something very special to come close to eclipsing their own standards. But we will probably have to wait a fair few years before the new F1 arrives.
But for now all eyes are on McLaren for 9th September. It may not be the new F1, but the P11 promises to be something very special.