First Drive: McLaren 650S Spider

The McLaren 650S is a driver's delight.

The McLaren 650S is a driver's delight.

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What’s new?: The 650S is essentially an evolution of the 12C, but with such a comprehensive spectrum of upgrades that symbolically it’s more like a brand new car. It’s faster, better balanced and has an even broader range of talents at both ends of the performance/comfort scale.

Its mighty turbocharged V8 engine now has the sort of power you used to get only in unobtanium-rare hypercars, and the fact that the 650S is half a second faster to 100mph than the legendary McLaren F1 tells its own story. This thing is crushingly, breathlessly fast.

McLaren 650S Spider door, PA Photo/Handout. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature MOTORING Motoring Column.
McLaren 650S Spider door, PA Photo/Handout. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature MOTORING Motoring Column.

Looks and image: McLaren’s engineers and test drivers are keen to point out that styling is a mere trifle of a concern to come after making sure the mechanicals are the best in the business. That said, a new front end adds significant downforce to keep those sticky-tyred front wheels pinned hard to the floor.

 

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