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McLaren gets comfortable with GT

Practicality to the fore in McLaren’s 456kW/630Nm GT long-distance cruiser

16 May 2019

MCLAREN Automotive has prioritised comfort and practicality over outright performance in its new-generation GT – a model it describes as “the first true” grand tourer in its supercar line-up.


With the 570S-based 570GT as its spiritual predecessor, GT establishes a new model series for the British brand, sitting alongside the existing Sports, Super and Ultimate Series range.


It will go toe-to-toe with Bentley's Continental GT and Aston Martin’s DBS Superleggera upon its arrival in Australian showrooms “within this year”, although McLaren’s local arm has told GoAuto that pricing is yet to be locked in.


According to the company’s GT press release, the supercar marque has “redefined the modern GT ownership experience with a car that is lighter, faster and more engaging than existing products in the segment, with greater space, comfort and useability”.


Measuring in at 4683mm long, 2045mm wide and 1213mm tall with a 2675mm wheelbase and 110mm of ground clearance, GT offers what McLaren claims is class-leading cargo capacity of 570L, which is split between front (150L) and rear (420L) compartments.


The latter is accessed via a front-hinged, full-length glazed tailgate that soft closes as standard but can be optioned with power operation. It provides enough room for bags as well as a golf bag or two pairs of 185cm skis with boots, according to McLaren.


The cabin, which is accessed via signature dihedral doors, again features McLaren’s portrait 7.0-inch touchscreen but this time it is powered by a new infotainment system billed as its “most sophisticated to date”. It features Here satellite navigation with live traffic updates.


Comfort is enhanced via a unique set of power-adjustable seats with heating, which have been optimised for long-distance travel thanks to extra padding and support in key areas.


The standard gloss-black carbon-fibre roof can be swapped out for an electrochromic glazed glass panel that can darken or lighten at the touch of a button.


Naturally, the GT is not short on performance, borrowing its mid-mounted 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 from 720S, albeit with a less potent tune.


It still produces 456kW of power at 7500rpm and 630Nm of torque from 5500-6500rpm, with more than 95 per cent of the latter available from 3000-7250rpm.


With drive exclusively sent to the rear wheels via a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, the GT sprints from standstill to 100km/h in just 3.2 seconds and 200km/h in 9.0s while on the way to a top speed of 326km/h.


Claimed fuel consumption on the Europe’s recently introduced WLTP combined-cycle test is 11.9 litres per 100 kilometres, while carbon dioxide emissions are 270 grams per kilometre.


The GT’s carbon-fibre MonoCell II-T monocoque chassis is shared with the Speedtail, resulting in what McLaren claims is the lightest kerb weight in its segment, at 1530kg.


It also uses electro-hydraulic power steering and aluminium double-wishbone suspension with three-mode adaptive dampers.


The GT rolls on 20-inch alloy wheels up front and 21-inch rims at the rear – the largest fitted yet to a McLaren. They are wrapped in 225/35 and 295/30 Pirelli P Zero tyres respectively.


Braking is handled by 367mm front and 354mm rear brake discs, both of which are clamped by four-piston callipers. Carbon-ceramic rotors with forged aluminium stoppers are optional.


“The new McLaren GT combines competition levels of performance with continent-crossing capability, wrapped in a beautiful body and true to McLaren’s ethos of designing superlight cars with a clear weight advantage over rivals,” said McLaren Automotive chief executive Mike Flewitt.


“Designed for distance, it provides the comfort and space expected of a grand tourer, but with a level of agility never experienced before in this segment. In short, this is a car that redefines the notion of a grand tourer in a way that only a McLaren could.”


GT is the fourth model in McLaren’s Track25 business plan that was announced last year, following the Speedtail, 720S Spider and 600LT Spider. Fourteen more new models are due by 2025.

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