The lightest and most powerful series-production McLaren, the new V8-engined, rear-wheel drive 750S which is available in coupe and convertible form is a supercar for the purist.
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With all available carbon fibre and lightweight options selected, the coupe weighs 2,815lbs in dry lightest form, which delivers a segment-leading power-to-weight ratio of 579bhp-per-tonne. This is a remarkable 425lbs lighter than its closest competitor and delivers a power-to-weight advantage of 22bhp. The 750S Spider is designed with the same focus on minimizing weight. It features a Retractable Hard Top (RHT), rollover protection system and a bespoke rear upper structure to the monocoque constructed from carbon fibre, but such is the strength of the carbon fibre monocoque that no additional reinforcement is needed.
This ensures the Spider is equally impressive in power-to-weight terms and segment-leading at 558bhp-per-tonne, at its lightest dry weight of 2,923lbs. The extraordinary levels of exhilaration, precision, agility, feel and feedback that the 750S delivers are immediately apparent to the driver, even at lower speeds – and its low weight is a key factor in its dynamic performance. At just 3,062lbs (DIN), it weighs 66lbs less than a 720S – a clear example of McLaren’s dedication to lightweight engineering. This philosophy of performance-based innovation is evidenced by features such as carbon fibre-shelled racing seats that are a combined 38.6lbs lighter than the base seats in a 720S.
New 10-spoke ultra-lightweight forged wheels are the lightest ever fitted as standard on a series-production McLaren and save 30.4lbs. The new driver instrument display is lighter by 4lbs. Even the windscreen glass contributes to weight reduction, providing a 3.5lbs saving. The 4.0-liter, twin-turbocharged V8 engine with power of 740bhp and torque of 590lb ft provides ferocious performance, with the 750S capable of 0-60mph in 2.7 seconds and 0-124mph in 7.2 seconds (Spider 7.3 seconds). This is quicker than its closest competitor on both measures. In-gear acceleration is amplified by optimized transmission gearing and a revised kickdown control strategy.
The suspension springs are softer at the front and stiffer at the rear than in the 720S, which together with reconfiguration of both the passive and active elements of the bespoke valve stack and a new approach to tuning the suspension – adjusting the accumulators in the struts, which is used for the first time in 750S – benefits ride comfort, roll control, steering feedback and cornering balance. Additionally, new spring and damper design reduces weight by 4.4lbs. ■