A se­ri­ously im­por­tant car for McLaren

Motor (Australia) - - SECRETS REVEALED -

THERE is pres­sure, of course there is. It comes in­her­ent with a pe­riod of suc­cess. McLaren has mo­men­tum to main­tain, with sales up 99.3 per cent in 2016 (from 1654 cars in 2015 to 3286). The last 650S has been built. By June, the 720S will be be­ing built at a rate of seven a day (first de­liv­er­ies are due in Q3 and prices start at $489,900). Will it prove more 12C than P1? We doubt it.

“To­wards the end of the sign-off drives, Mike Fle­witt drove the car for the first time in about five months – a life­time to­wards the end of a pro­ject,” Haydn Baker said. “He drove for an hour and half on the road, from Barcelona to the cir­cuit, and when he stepped out he told me, ‘That’s the most beau­ti­ful drive I’ve ever had.’

“I told him he now had to drive it on the track. When he came in he told me he had to re-cal­i­brate: all that he thought he knew about gears, en­try speeds and grip at that cir­cuit had changed. Lovely to drive on the road, and then a level of per­for­mance on track that’s al­most in­tim­i­dat­ing. I was happy with that.”

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