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LEGO McLaren Senna rear

McLaren builds lifesize Senna supercar out of Lego

LEGO McLaren Senna rear

McLaren’s Senna supercar has been recreated in Lego – and the result is genuinely jaw-dropping.

The 1:1 scale model consists of 467,854 bricks and took a team of 42 Lego specialists nearly 5,000 hours to assemble. Compare that to the 300 hours McLaren needs to hand-build the real thing.

At 1,700kg, the Lego Senna is also 500kg heavier than the flyweight original.

LEGO McLaren Senna and real McLaren Senna

Open the dihedral doors and you’ll discover an interior with genuine Senna hardware, including the steering wheel, pedals and carbon fibre driving seat. The badges and Pirelli tyres are also pukka McLaren parts. 

The lights and infotainment both work, while pushing the start button in the roof simulates the sound of an 800hp V8 erupting to life. 

The car’s Victory Grey with orange exterior colour scheme replicates the 219-piece, Lego Speed Champions edition Senna model, which is already on sale.

LEGO McLaren Senna interior

This is the second full-size McLaren made from Lego; the first was a 720S, built two years ago. However, the Senna uses nearly twice as many bricks.

Fans of Lego and McLaren will be able to see the model at various events this summer, including the Goodwood Festival of Speed in July.

We’ll leave the final word to MR’s Richard Aucock, who drove the Senna in 2018:

Hours after driving it, my hands were still shaking. I couldn’t sleep that night through thinking about it. I had wondered how McLaren could justify calling a car ‘Senna’. Now I knew. And I don’t think any car will feel quite the same again.

Buy a Lego McLaren kit

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McBrilliant: McLaren Glasgow is named best European retailer

McLaren Glasgow

McLaren Glasgow has been named McLaren European Retailer of the Year 2018, seeing off seven other UK dealers and European centres from as far afield as Stockholm and Riga.

It’s the third time Britain’s most northerly Macca retailer has scooped the prestigious prize, with the award claimed by McLaren Glasgow in its first year of trading in 2015, then again in 2016. The retailer also won the Global award in 2015.

In 2018, McLaren Beverly Hills lifted the Global crown, beating four regional finalists from Taipei, Mexico and Glasgow.

McLaren Glasgow European best

David Gilbert, managing director of McLaren Automotive in Europe, said: “I would like to congratulate McLaren Glasgow on claiming its third McLaren European Retailer of the Year award.

“McLaren Glasgow continues to set high standards in marketing, customer service and aftersales in addition to exemplary sales performance. This achievement is testament to the team’s commitment and I look forward to working together to continue this success in 2019.”

Other UK locations include Ascot, Birmingham, Bristol, Hatfield, Leeds, London and Manchester, plus a new retailer in the New Forest. 

No matter where you are in the UK, we suspect some of the terrific driving roads situated just north of Glasgow make the Scottish dealer a tempting location for McLaren’s most hardcore driving enthusiasts.

Service your McLaren, head north, enjoy empty roads, and return home feeling energised. Job done.

Winging it: McLaren Senna GTR debuts with big aero

McLaren Senna GTR

It’s just over a year since the concept for the McLaren Senna GTR debuted at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. Now, just after this year’s show, McLaren has revealed the production version. It’s even madder…

Let’s get the whirlwind of numbers out of the way first. It weighs just 1,188kg and has 825hp to move it along. That gives it 694hp/per tonne. It produces 1,000kg of downforce, with figures appearing 15mph sooner than in the road-going Senna. There are just 75 cars, with each one costing at least £1.1 million before local taxes. And yes, they’re all sold. They’ve been sold out for almost a year.

What’s changed from the Senna GTR Concept?

McLaren Senna GTR

The exhaust has moved from the side to a more conventional position at the back. Don’t boo and hiss too much though, because believe it or not, some of the aero has got even more extreme…

The wing at the back, specifically, is very different from the concept, given that it used the production car wing. Now reprofiled and relocated, the trailing edge sits out of the car’s footprint so it can attack cleaner air that’s flowing further away from the car.

It’s also connected to the diffuser, LMP1-style, for better control of air near lower areas at the rear of the car. Active elements are also incorporated that aren’t allowed on homologated GT3 racers. Around the rest of the car, the massive splitter has been reined in, but dive planes and vortex generators make up for it.

Suspension wise there’s a lot of GT3-proven bits and in terms of braking, it can out-stop the 720S GT3 thanks to 390mm layered carbon discs. Needless to say, the limits for customisation are boundless. Especially when you’ve got the bods at MSO ready to enact your wildest specification desires.

McLaren Senna GTR

“The McLaren Senna GTR is a perfect example of our determination to bring our customers the Ultimate expression of track driving performance and excitement,” said Mike Flewitt, chief executive officer, McLaren Automotive.

“The McLaren Senna was designed from the outset to be an extreme track car, but the 2018 McLaren Senna GTR Concept suggested how much more further we could go and now, free from the constraints of road car legislation and motorsport competition rules, we have pushed the limits of what is technically possible to advance circuit driving capability to another level entirely.”

McLaren Senna is the latest Lego supercar

Lego McLaren Senna Speed Champion

The latest car to be immortalised in the Lego Speed Champions series is the McLaren Senna.

One of the most extreme track-focused supercars ever manufactured can now be enjoyed from the comfort of your kitchen table.

Lego McLaren Senna

The Senna follows a succession of McLaren models sold as Lego kits, with the P1 and 720S setting the Speed Champions standard. And while the full-sized hypercar would set you back £750,000, the 15cm Speed Champions edition Senna costs just £12.99 – 50,000 times less.

The kit is comprised of 219 pieces and should be much quicker to assemble than the real thing, which takes around 300 hours per car at McLaren’s Woking factory.

The model, once completed, will wear a Victory Grey colour with contrasting orange highlights. You also get a set of exchangeable wheels and a mini figure.

Lego McLaren Senna

Unlike the actual Senna, you also get a wind tunnel so you can test out its aerodynamic prowess. Whether it’s capable of generating 800kg of downforce at 155mph like the real thing remains to be seen.

What we can’t decide is which is better-looking – the Lego version or the real thing. The Senna was a controversial car at launch, with form so overtly playing second fiddle to function.

Lego McLaren Senna

You won’t need to apply and sit on a waiting list for this Senna, either. With any luck, you’ll be able to pick one up at your local Lego shop by the weekend.

That being said, the Speed Champions series is known for its popularity, so first-come, first-served. 

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McLaren teases 600LT Spider ahead of January 16 reveal

McLaren 600LT Spider teased January 16

McLaren is teasing ‘another new chapter in the story of the Longtail family’, with what we expect is the 600LT Spider due to ‘open’ next Wednesday lunchtime.

We know it’s a sports series model, given the teaser images and videos which clearly depict distinctive features of the 600LT, including the upward-facing exhausts and fixed rear wing.

In the video, we clearly see what is the tail end of a 600LT, before the camera pans across showing a topless silhouette cast in shadow on the ground.

It really doesn’t take too much detective work to figure out what’s coming, then. The new Spider follows hot on the heels of the newly-revealed 720S Spider.

What can we expect? The 600LT coupe was one of 2018’s best cars, featuring in every car of the year assessment worth its salt. Our very own Tim Pitt made the very bold but by all accounts justified claim that it could be 2018’s best driver’s car.

As the top comes off the LT, we can only expect an even more visceral experience. A popped roof means drivers can get even closer to that fire-spitting 600hp twin-turbo V8. Given the carbon monocell structure that all McLarens enjoy, losing the roof shouldn’t be to the detriment of those delicious chassis dynamics.

McLaren 600LT

As far as raw numbers are concerned, the weight might go up slightly, the 0-62 might increase by a decimal of a second or two, and the top speed might be lower. Regardless, we’re in no doubt it’ll be an absolute tonic to drive. Hopefully dropping the top will result in McLaren’s tag line for the car – ‘the edge, amplified’.

While the new model isn’t expected to be limited production, it is limited on time. Before it’s even revealed, McLaren is warning that it’ll only be in production for 12 months. ‘Buyers will need to move quickly’, advises McLaren.

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McLaren reveals motorsport-inspired 570S special editions

McLaren MSO Racing Through The Ages 570

McLaren has unveiled a selection of cars in special liveries to commemorate important eras of its racing history. These comprise the ‘Racing Through the Ages’ collection. 

The company’s bespoke MSO division was commissioned by McLaren Beverly Hills to create the collection, which spans three themes across six cars. The themes are Muriwai, Papaya Spark and Sarthe Grey, each presented on a 570S coupe and 570S Spider. The cars themselves are slightly modified, with fixed rear wings.

Muriwai

McLaren MSO Racing Through The Ages 570

When we say the collection spans McLaren’s racing history, it really spans it. Muriwai pays homage to Bruce McLaren’s formative years of driving in New Zealand. The white paint with blue flashes is inspired by the waves crashing at Muriwai Beach, where Bruce first raced, aged 15, in the early 1950s.

It’s also a reference to the house Bruce built in Woking, named Muriwai, which was – you guessed it – white with flashes of blue. On the window shutters, to be precise.

Papaya Spark

McLaren MSO Racing Through The Ages 570

For McLaren aficionados, the word ‘Papaya’ – the company’s signature orange shade – will have pricked up their ears. This theme represents the golden era of Bruce and McLaren racing cars of the 1960s and, after his untimely death, the 1970s. This was when Bruce set the foundations for the McLaren racing legend in Can-Am, Formula 1 and Indycar.

There are flashes of blue on the end plates of the wings, as a nod to Bruce’s original racers.

Sarthe Grey

McLaren MSO Racing Through The Ages 570

Even the most casual of car enthusiasts should be well aware of Sarthe. McLaren achieved motorsport success on its first time out at Le Mans, when it won with a car one below the top class.

That 1995 Le Mans win with the F1 GTR was virtually unprecedented and, truthfully, unexpected. It was perhaps what cemented McLaren as a legend and a viable brand in terms of its 21st-century presence. The Sarthe Grey colour emulates the winning car, and has ’24 Heures Du Mans – Winners 1995’ on the end of its wing plates in white.

McLaren MSO Racing Through The Ages 570

Each car comes fitted with a ‘1 of 6 Racing through the Ages’ plaque, a colour-coded key and a GT4-style racing stripe. Lightweight wheels and a sports exhaust are fitted, too.

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McLaren Speedtail Attribute Prototype - Albert_image 02

This is the McLaren Speedtail test prototype… called Albert

McLaren Speedtail Attribute Prototype - Albert_image 02

Now that the Speedtail is revealed, McLaren is wasting no time putting its prototype through a rigorous test regime.

This Speedtail mule – affectionately christened ‘Albert’ by McLaren – is prototype MVY02. As you can see, it’s not quite the finished article visually. The face of a 720S has been grafted on to the flowing form of the Speedtail – beautifully exaggerated by an aero line graphic ‘disguise’. 

The origins of Albert

McLaren Speedtail Attribute Prototype - Albert_image 01

‘Albert’ was the name given to the original McLaren F1 test mule in the early 1990s. It relates to address of the premises where McLaren’s first road-going supercar was designed.

’MV’ is the initial for any McLaren project and the ‘Y’ refers to the central point in the XYZ axis in computer-aided design programmes. It’s a geeky nod to the Speedtail’s central driving position. ’02’ presumably means this is the second mule. That would make sense given McLaren was testing what looked like a disguised 720S with a central driving position last year.

That’s what makes Albert special. It’s the first proper (nearly) production-bodied prototype.

Underneath, the 1,050hp petrol-electric powertrain is running. Until we’re told otherwise, we’re assuming the petrol part is a derivation of Mclaren’s 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8.

A tough life of testing awaits Albert, including extreme heat and cold, plus high-speed testing up to a claimed 250mph top speed.

McLaren Speedtail Attribute Prototype - Albert_image 03

Indycar champion Kenny Bräck will be behind the wheel. He’s the madman who wrangled a P1 LM around the Nürburgring in six minutes, 43 seconds. We’d say Albert’s in safe hands.

Expect to see liveried Speedtail mules prowling around Woking and beyond very soon.

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McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GT

McLaren Speedtail is the 250mph, £2.1 million tribute to the McLaren F1

McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GTThe stunning McLaren Speedtail is the first ‘hyper-GT’ the firm has ever made. What a way to honour its first ever road car, the McLaren F1. Needless to say, even at £2.1 million, all 106 have already been sold.

McLaren is making just 106 Speedtail because that’s how many original F1s it built (hard to believe, huh?). It shares that car’s central driving position and three-seat layout too, but don’t be fooled. This is anything but a retro rebirth.

McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GT

The reason it’s called Speedtail, and not F1, is because it’s the fastest McLaren the British firm’s ever built: it does 250mph flat-out. That’s 403 km/h in Euro-speak. A 1,050hp petrol-electric drivetrain gives it the firepower to reach this, and also renders 0-62mph times irrelevant.

How about 0-186mph (that’s 0-300km/h) in 12.8 seconds instead? The P1, McLaren’s previous ‘ultimate’ car, takes almost four seconds longer to reach this speed.

McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GT

Speedtail in name, Speedtail in nature: the cockpit is teardrop-shaped and the rear end is elongated to a staggering degree – at 5.2 metres (17 feet), it’s longer than many limousines. The body, like the carbon fibre structure, is made entirely from carbon fibre.

The front wheel aero-covers make it look like a world land speed record car, as does the active aerodynamic features including McLaren-patented active rear ailerons. There aren’t even any door mirrors, so as not to create drag: the Speedtail has digital rear-view cameras instead.

McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GT

McLaren’s installed a Velocity mode. This switches the engine into its top power setting, activates the active aero and also lowers the Speedtail by 35mm to eek out that 250mph top speed. This takes it down to just 1,120mm tall.

Pirelli’s designed a special set of P-Zero tyres for McLaren to cope with all that speed and power.

McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GT

The cabin is fully glazed and revealed by trick dihedral doors – power-operated, naturally. Detail engineering abounds: McLaren’s fitted clever electrochromic glass that darkens the top of the windscreen at the touch of a button – so it doesn’t need sun visors. It’s a “new level of technical luxury”.

McLaren Speedtail Hyper-GT

“McLaren has never built a vehicle like the Speedtail before,” said McLaren Automotive CEO Mike Flewitt. “The Speedtail is the ultimate McLaren road car; a fusion of art and science that combines an astonishing maximum speed with an iconic central driving position and a truly pioneering approach to bespoke personalisation.”

It intentionally looks like sleek, record-breaking ‘streamliners’, he said, and “the luxurious three-seat cockpit offers a subline combination of an incredible driving experience, unmatched individualism and innovative materials never seen before in a road-going vehicle”.

What a way to honour the original mighty McLaren. The lucky owners who are recently gathered in London for an exclusive (and private) first viewing are 106 of the most fortunate petrolheads on the planet.

McLaren Speedtail: in pictures

McLaren 720S Track Pack

New McLaren 720S Track Pack is a cut-price Senna

McLaren 720S Track Pack

Couldn’t get on that oh-so-exclusive list of buyers laying out £750,000 on a McLaren Senna? Few had a chance, frankly: the track-focused hypercar was virtually sold out on arrival. Fear not, though, as McLaren is now offering an alternative of sorts. Meet the 720S Track Pack.

No, it’s not the full aero-splattered monster the Senna is. Nor does it have that car’s 800hp power figure. But the 720S isn’t exactly a slouch. It might be a third of the price, but it’s certainly not a third of the car.

What is the McLaren 720S Track Pack?

McLaren 720S Track Pack

The Track Pack puts a bit of circuit-focused garnish on what is an already prodigiously capable supercar.

Weight loss comes first, with a 24kg saving versus the standard 720S. It achieves this with a carbon rear spoiler, carbon race seats, super-lightweight forged alloys and a sports exhaust.

Inside, you’ll find extended gearshift paddles, an Alcantara-wrapped steering wheel, a six-point harness mounted to a titanium bar and those race seats. The McLaren Track Telemetry system uses three cameras and data-logging to monitor driving performance and identify how you can improve.

All of that together represents a bit of bang for your buck versus buying the pieces individually. Nevertheless, £28,360 on top of the cost of a 720S is no small outlay.

The release of the 720S Track Pack comes as McLaren progresses with its development of the 720S GT3. This customer racing car goes into production next year, with prices starting from around £440,000.

McLaren 720S Track Pack

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McLaren Senna vs motocross bikes at Goodwood

Wacky races: McLaren Senna versus 3 motocross bikes – who wins?

McLaren Senna vs motocross bikes at Goodwood

It answers a question asked by thousands of motorists every summer. No, not whether the M4/M5 or M3/A303 is the best way to the West Country, but what’s the quickest route to the top of the Goodwood Hill?

To celebrate the launch of Forza Horizon 4, a McLaren Senna and three motocross bikes lined up at the start of the iconic hillclimb, poised for a straight fight to the top of the hill. 

The rules were simple: the driver in the Senna had to stick to the track, while the motocross riders were free to follow a route more akin to that chosen by a crow. 

Who won? Well, you’ll have to watch the video to find out, but the riders used more than a few tricks and stunts to outmanoeuvre the incredible speed and power of the McLaren.

Senna by name…

The Senna is the most extreme road car McLaren has ever built and the latest model in the Ultimate Series. It’s all about the ‘three 800s’: 800hp, 800Nm (519lb ft) of torque and 800kg of downforce (at 155mph). Zero to 62mph takes just 2.8 seconds, while 124mph is seen off just four seconds later.

We’ve driven it, although not against a trio of motocross bikes at Goodwood. Our verdict: “Does it live up to the name? Without doubt. This McLaren is Senna. I now have a hesitation-free answer when people ask me what’s the best car I’ve ever driven.”

Forza Horizon 4 Ultimate Edition is available from Friday 28 September, four days ahead of the global launch on Tuesday 2 October. Gamers can collect, modify and drive over 450 cars and play solo or team up with friends to race through Great Britain.

Maybe Forza will have the answer to the M4/M5 or M3/A303 conundrum. We’d opt for the A303, especially if we had the keys to the McLaren Senna.

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