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McLaren

Every day time, it seems, newer and faster cars are appearing on the automotive scene. Ferrari just debuted the V-12 hybrid LaFerrari. Porsche is quickly to turns out the 918 Spyder crossbreed. Pagani has the new Huayra. Koenigsegg offers the Agera. And, Ascari has the KZ1R. Bugatti is up to around 12 variations within the Veyron. Each is usually more intense than the final. Now, this looks like the Hennessey Venom GT will certainly steal the quickest car crown. Hell, there’s even a $1 million electric powered hyper car in the marketplace called the Rimac Concept One.

With each new model, each new new bit of technology and each new idea, manufacturers are attempting to eek away every bit of horsepower, torque and performance to make their cars simply that bit faster and better than everyone else’s. Yet, no matter what the finish consequence of the almost all of the style, testing and development is, every hypercar shares something in keeping: they all possess the McLaren F1 as the motivation and impetus for their existence.

Whereas the Lamborghini Miura is the progenitor of all supercars, the McLaren F1 took everything that is “supercar” and ramped it up. This is the granddaddy of hypercars. It blew its contemporaries out of the water, which was simply no small feat. The F1 comes from a generation of vehicles that includes the Ferrari F40, the Porsche 911 GT1 and the Jaguar XJ220. Last Monday, the McLaren F1 celebrated its twentieth birthday. On 28 May 1992 McLaren unveiled the F1 at a launch party at The Sporting Club in Monaco during Monaco F1 Week. In honor of this momentous occasion, this appears like a good time to appear back and discover what made the McLaren F1 a truly great car and a centerpiece of automotive history.

It all starts, as many stories such as this do, with racing, specifically with Formula One. In 1988, McLaren’s Formulation One team received 15 out of 16 races. Not a bad beginning point for creating the world’s fastest car. Anyway, after that season, McLaren Cars Ltd of Woking, England believed it a smart move to expand past racing in to creating a road car. Being the same McLaren who just won 94 per cent of their particular Formula One contests, the vehicle had to have the greatest power-to-weight ratio to date but still retain daily driver usability.

Normally, that type of refusal to compromise is a non-starter when it comes to designing a car. Not really for McLaren. Because of the success in racing, they had practically endless funds to spend on advancement of the F1. Oddly enough, that same attitude led to the vehicle that dethroned the F1, the Bugatti Veyron, a little over a decade later.

McLaren Cars Ltd. tapped technical director Gordan Murray and developer Peter Stevens to help make the McLaren F1 a real possibility. Keeping in mind the need to produce sufficient power while still preserving reliability, Murray elected to equip the F1 with a naturally aspirated V-12.

After shopping the project to Honda and Toyota and being rejected by both, BMW and their famed Meters Division took an interest and designed the 6. 1 liter 60 degree V-12. The engine, designated BMW S70/2 produced 618 equine and 480 ft/lb of torque. The BMW engine was 14 per cent more powerful than Murray’s original specs called for, but that was offset simply the engines weight. At 586 pounds, it was 35 pounds heavier as opposed to the way Murray’s specifications.

The dry sump THE CAR S70/2 has an aluminum block and head, quad overhead cams with variable valve timing, a chain cam drive to maintain reliability and was mounted to a six-speed transmitting with a triple dish clutch. As the engine was high revving (reaching max torque at 7, 400 rpm) this produced a reasonable amount of temperature. To guarantee insulation between the engine as well as the carbon dietary fiber bay and monocoque, Murray lined the engine compartment with gold foil, an excellent heat reflector. Just a little less than an ounce of precious metal was used in each car. We wonder if the significance of the F1s fluctuates with the marketplace price for precious metal.

Thanks to THE CAR, McLaren achieved their goal of having the industry’s greatest power-to-weight ratio, 550 hp/ton. In evaluation to today’s hypercars, the Ferrari Enzo reached 434 hp/ton, the Bugatti Veyron reached 530 hp/ton and the SSC Ultimate Aero TT bested it with 1003 hp/ton. And, that ratio showed in the car’s speed. The F1 could accelerate from 0-60 in a few. 2 seconds, zero to 100 in 6. a few seconds, 0-200 in 28 seconds and run the one fourth mile in eleven. 1 seconds at 138 mph. The McLaren F1 strike a world record best speed of 243 miles each hour. To this day, it is still the fastest naturally aspirated production car in existence.

That amazing power-to-weight ratio was made possible through the consumption of carbon dietary fiber, Kevlar and magnesium (mg) throughout the vehicles body to save weight. The McLaren F1s ranged in weight from two, 341 pounds to 2, 509 pounds, according to model. The F1 was the first production car to use a complete carbon fiber reinforced plastic monocoque chassis. The human body’s connection points were built out of aluminum and magnesium. To top it all off, Peter Stevens’ body design accomplished a drag coefficient of 0. thirty-two, as compared to the Veyron and Ultimate Aero TT both at 0. 36.

Completing the hypercar look of the car, the F1 features swan-wing doors and extremely extremely unique and awesome luggage compartments in front of the rear wheel curve. The F1 also has an unusual 3-seater configuration with the driver in the center to increase visibility.

Formula One inspired suspension, 235/45ZR17 front tires, 315/45ZR17 rear tires, Brembo vented and cross-drilled brake discs (332 mm in the front and 305 mm in the rear) with 4 piston calipers all around and a pc managed handbrake gives the F1 handling and performance commensurate using its speed.

The McLaren F1 was offered in three street legal variations, the regular road car, the F1 GT and the F1 LM. The F1 GTR version was provided for the racing circuit. Only 106 F1s were built, 69 of the standard, 6 F1 LMs, 3 F1 GTs and twenty-eight F1 GTRs. The standard F1s originally sold for about $970, 000 with all the LMs and GTs being a lttle bit more costly. Because of McLaren’s dedication to this car, they may be still offering service and maintenance on all F1s. A good example of an F1 can sell at auction to get over $3 million. In 2010, Gooding and Company Pebble Beach Auction offered a 1994 F1 for $3, 575, 000.

Murray and McLaren achieved their particular goal. The F1 is an stubborn speedster and a successful daily driver. As the granddaddy of all hypercars, the McLaren F1 is still an amazing thing. This might not exactly be the fastest, but it was the first. Certainly on my bucket list of cars to test drive. Hmmm, I wonder if The writer Leno will let me borrow his. Happy birthday McLaren F1.

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