MCLAREN’S successor to the mighty P1 and the grandchild of the legendary F1 will bear the name ‘Speedtail’, the British supercar maker has revealed.
Following the Senna as McLaren’s next instalment in its top-tier ‘Ultimate Series’ range, the Speedtail continues the company’s migration away from its established alphanumeric naming strategy.
While superficially similar to the ‘Longtail’ moniker that was first informally applied to race-spec versions of the McLaren F1 and eventually became official nomenclature on the 675LT and 600LT, it’s always been shortened to an acronym. The Speedtail is different – it’s not a suffix, it’s the car’s full name. Lesser McLarens continue to advertise their power output in brake horsepower in their names, but, like the Senna, the Speedtail won’t follow that strategy. The car’s provisional name of BP23 was a red herring, it seems.
Why Speedtail? Because, simply put, McLaren’s next ‘Hyper-GT’ will be the fastest McLaren in a straight line yet. The company isn’t talking numbers for now, but says it will without any doubt eclipse the McLaren F1’s 391km/h top speed.
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Just 106 Speedtails will be created, and 106 well-heeled customers have already placed eye-watering $2.8 million reservations against each one. McLaren’s brief teaser video announcing the Speedtail’s name keeps the car’s true form shrouded, but it’s been known for a while that the car will feature a central driving position flanked by two passenger seats – just like the landmark F1. Unlike the F1, a petrol-electric powertrain will thrust it along the road.
And unlike the ultra-focused Senna that sits next to it in the Ultimate Series, the Speedtail will adopt a more luxurious posture. The styling will be more organic and flowing than the Senna’s brutally pragmatic bodywork, and the use of high-end materials will endow it with an ultra-premium aura. McLaren Special Operations will tailor each one to the owner’s tastes, and we doubt that any two Speedtails will be alike.
Production of the Speedtail will commence at the end of 2019, though we’ll be able to lay our eyes on its final production-ready shape before the end of this year.