The devil’s work
MCLAREN AUTOMOTIVE CAN’T SEEM TO STOP LAUNCHING CARS. BUT AS EACH EPIC SUPERCAR SEEMS TO GET BETTER THAN THE LAST, WE’RE NOT COMPLAINING. NOEL EBDON HEADS TO SCOTLAND TO TRY OUT THE MONSTROUS 666 HP 675LT SPIDER
getting a hint of what it must be like to be Tom Cruise, such is the number of camera phones being pointed in my direction. There clearly aren’t many convertible, metallic-gold supercars in Glasgow.
But it does give me time to assess the car without the performance equation. The 675 is easy to drive, the roof folds and closes neatly and without fuss, and it’s surprisingly easy to live with. Even sat in traffic, it doesn’t feel like a handful or as if it’s straining at the leash. I get the feeling I could do the daily commute in this, which I certainly wasn’t expecting.
A final unhindered blast back to the hotel confirms my growing love for this car. The power delivery is spot-on, the dimensions are perfect and the overall driver interaction is sublime.
Returning the car back to the shores of Loch Lomond, there can be few better settings to mull over a car that has rearranged my senses and given me a newfound love of driving in the rain.
When Mclaren launched the initial MP412C, it was accused of building a soulless automaton, with no passion and a clinical approach to driving. At the time, I thought that was a little unfair; in my view, most of the V8 mid-engine supercars of the time felt very much the same and the Mclaren was one of the best, with fingertip feel.
People allegedly yearned for Ferrari’s passion, which in my mind frankly didn’t exist. People see Ferrari as passionate, because it was in the past. But the current cars don’t have that same feeling. People are applying thoughts of the past to the modern cars without actually thinking about the facts properly. Pretty much any current supercar comes without that feel anymore, because frankly, we’re not allowed to own cars like that now.
What people seem to fail to understand is that much of that passion came from real danger, from living on the edge, from being able to control the uncontrollable. As we all well know, governments and health and safety people don’t like that sort of thing anymore, and neither do car companies.
Mclaren seems to have carried this reputation of producing clinical cars ever since the 12C, as the armchair critics (most of whom have never driven anything more potent than a Golf GTI) spout the same tired old clichés on rambling Internet forums.
Well, they’re wrong. I drove the Mclaren 650S at Ascari, and I am therefore in a position to be able to say it is a stonkingly good car with all the passion you’ll ever need.
But the 657LT takes the supercar experience to a whole new level. It’s tight, razor sharp, perfectly built and, maybe most importantly, achingly gorgeous to look at. That pretty much ticks all the boxes in one go.
And I’d like to go on record by saying that this is the best supercar I’ve driven in a very long time.