We don't break the rules. We make them
Carbon fibre. Brake steer. Hybrid power. We’re very comfortable breaking new ground. But why reinvent the wheel? While other manufacturers embraced all-electric steering, we stuck with hydraulic systems… because there’s simply still nothing better. For feeling. For feedback. For driver experience. Innovation isn’t change for change’s sake. It’s about doing things better, not just doing them differently. For us, it all comes back to the McLaren mantra: everything for a reason.
The vision for the McLaren Speedtail was simple: to create the fastest accelerating car we’d ever designed. It was a goal that called upon the ultimate in low-drag aerodynamic design. That meant getting rid of wing mirrors. And using cameras instead. Enclosing the front wheels with carbon fibre covers. And – in an automotive first – creating a body that bends at the tail. Adding downforce when you need it. And reducing drag when you don’t. The result? A car that’s so aerodynamically pure, it could have been honed by nature itself.
Problem: we could see a way to improve our design process but the necessary technology didn’t exist. Solution: we invented it. For years, we’ve pioneered the use of virtual reality (VR) in our design studio. But we took it to the next level, creating a system that allows our designers to translate their ideas into virtual models intuitively, quickly, and with unprecedented realism. It took some lateral thought. And partnering with a games developer to produce the software. But it was a problem well worth solving.
Interiors. Swimwear. Coronary implants. The McLaren colour and materials team have designed them all. Their wide experience bears weight. And let’s them look beyond the obvious. So expect the unexpected in our cars. Take the intricate carbon fibre weave you’ll find on the McLaren Speedtail, for example. Its incredibly fine thread count means that it has to be manufactured using a traditional Jacquard loom, a technique usually found in the high-end fashion world. Not automotive design. Because nothing new comes from old ways of thinking.