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McLaren Senna, BP23 coming to Australia

Coming soon: McLaren has confirmed that its ballistic Senna will be sold Down Under, but the company is not talking numbers yet.

$1m-plus McLarens set to arrive in Oz by end of 2020


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15 May 2018

MCLAREN global communications director Wayne Bruce says that demand for its Senna and BP23 hypercar duo have exceeded slated production runs by up to three-to-one, however the limited editions will still be sold in Australia.
All 499 units of the £750,000 ($A1.3m) Senna have been sold, with the road-legal hypercar produced in right-hand drive – unlike its P1 successor and past Ferrari LaFerrari and Porsche 918 Spyder rivals – and purchased by Australian buyers, making it one of the most expensive vehicles that will be seen on local roads.
“Oh yes, there are Sennas coming to Australia, I can’t say how many but a handful are coming,” Mr Bruce told GoAuto at a drive day with the McLaren 540C and 570S Spider in Sydney last week.
“Senna in our Ultimate Series we are calling the ultimate road-legal track car. We started talking to customers about this a year ago, we told them we were going to make 500 – we didn’t show them what it looked like and we didn’t tell them what it was going to be called – and the car was sold out even before we revealed it, all 499 because we kept one back.
“(But) Senna is left- and right-hand drive. P1 was just left.”
The Senna’s 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine delivers 588kW/800Nm, it weighs just 1198kg (dry), and has a spoiler that can deliver 800kg of downforce. It claims a 2.8-second 0-100km/h time – edging out the 720S on which it based by 0.1s – on to 200km/h in 6.8s and a 340km/h top speed.
While Mr Bruce did not disclose how many buyers missed out on a Senna – “we disappointed people, for sure” – he said that 200 buyers wanted to purchase the non-road-legal Senna GTR racetrack version, almost three times the 75 units that will be produced.
A similar demand-versus-supply skew will also exist for McLaren’s most expensive vehicle, the as-yet unnamed and unseen BP23 (for Bespoke Project 2 with three seats) that Mr Bruce confirmed will be revealed by the end of 2018.
Just 106 units of the £1.6 million ($A2.9m) BP23 will be produced, an identical production rate to its McLaren F1 spiritual successor. Yet more than 300 buyers had already applied to purchase what Mr Bruce reiterated was “a hyper GT” because “it’s about going long distances with three people aboard as fast as possible”.
“We’ll show the car before the end of this year and customer deliveries will start in 2020,” he said.
“Nobody knows outside the company what exactly it is going to look like, but that hasn’t stopped 300 people around the world saying they want one. So do the math, that means around 200 people are going to be unhappy – sorry.”
It remains unclear whether the BP23 will use a petrol-electric drivetrain, however McLaren has said it will deliver more power than the P1, which made 672kW/900Nm.
Mr Bruce further confirmed that McLaren would not simply raise production due to the three-to-one demand being experienced by its top limited-edition models despite the allure of potentially increased profitability. But at the same time the car-maker would work to address the concerns of disappointed buyers.
“We haven’t been doing this for very long in terms of selling cars, but with each product what we can’t do is a vanity project,” he continued.
“It’s a very fine balance. Everything we make has to make a return and we calculate what we need that return to be, to then reinvest back into the next car and do our sums accordingly with volume versus price. We announce a number and there’s no turning back.
“With Senna GTR, we said up to 75 and in fact at last count we have had over 200 people interested. But that doesn’t mean we’re going to make more than 75. We don’t like disappointing people, however, so we have quite a close relationship with our customers. So if you’re not lucky enough to get a Senna, we will try to remember you for the next limited production car.”

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