McLaren has offered up a new name for, and more details about, the hybrid supercar it plans to bring to market next year.
Like competitors such as Aston Martin and Ferrari, McLaren wants to take advantage of the incredible, off-the-line torque that electric motors can deliver. It has already toyed with the advantages hybrid drivetrains can deliver with the limited-run P1 and Speedtail models. The McLaren Artura would be its first series version.
Designed to replace the current Super Series, the new hybrid will pair the electric drive system with a twin-turbo V-6. That engine will be smaller than what’s on the existing line and is widely expected to come in with a displacement of around three liters.
The Artura, meanwhile, is expected to provide some electric-only drive capabilities, though they would likely be limited. McLaren has so far not indicated any plans to add a plug-in hybrid to its line-up but may need to eventually.
A number of markets are now enacting new limits on the use of internal combustion engines. That includes the automaker’s home market, the UK banning vehicles solely powered by IC engines as of 2030, and all hybrids by 2035.
McLaren isn’t offering any hard details on power or performance but there seems little reason to believe it would launch a hybrid model that couldn’t at least match the 563 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque currently produced by its 570S model.
There would be the advantage of the instant torque that electric motors can deliver, but there’s also the reality that a hybrid drive system will add to the car’s weight.
In a statement, McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt said the product development team is taking multiple steps to minimize that extra mass. “Every element of the Artura is all-new – from the platform architecture and every part of the High-Performance Hybrid powertrain, to the exterior body, interior and cutting-edge driver interface – but it draws on decades of McLaren experience in pioneering super-lightweight race and road car technologies to bring all of our expertise in electrification to the supercar class.”
Another unanswered question is how many motors the McLaren Artura will feature. It may launch with a single motor in a rear-wheel-drive configuration but, if current practices hold, it’s expected to offer even higher-performance versions that would add another motor on the front axle.
Facing the new wave of government mandates, the auto industry is ramping up its collective electrification efforts. That’s particularly true in the exotic and performance segments where there are few other alternatives available.
Aston Martin is already working on a hybridized replacement for its Valkyrie line and recently announced plans to work with Mercedes to offer electric drivetrain technology in other product lines. The Mercedes-AMG performance line will be hybridizing and Maserati has plans for an all-electric version of its MC20 supercar. Even Ferrari is getting into the battery-car game. The SF90 Stradale is its first street-legal plug-in hybrid and it has announced plans to have a pure battery-electric model in its line-up by around 2025.