The query of coupe or convertible typically results in a heated debate between automotive fanatics. Coupe lovers cite lowered weight, elevated structural rigidity, and a cheaper price tag as causes to forgo the folding roof. Convertible followers counter with the thrill of open-element motoring and the type of a drop-top. Hope for a truce between each camps appears silly – until you’re McLaren.
The British supercar producer enjoys breaking from the norm. Earlier than the muse of McLaren Automotive – the present car-making entity – the F1 grew to become the primary highway automotive to make use of a chassis made completely from carbon fiber. The automobile’s astounding power-to-weight ratio helped it set a prime velocity file that stood for seven years.
Although McLaren by no means developed the F1 for racing, buyer demand prompted the automaker to develop a GTR mannequin in 1995. That automotive would win the 24 Hours of Le Mans the identical 12 months, making McLaren the primary and solely producer to win the well-known endurance race on its first try. Additional refinement of the F1 finally gave delivery to the GTR ‘Longtail’ – an aerodynamically superior racer that took first and second place within the 1997 24 Hours of Le Mans race.
A neat little bit of historical past, however what does it should do with the coupe versus convertible debate? The identical revolutionary engineering ideas that made the F1 highway and race automobiles so profitable have been utilized to the corporate’s latest choices, distinguishing them throughout the supercar market. When growing convertible fashions, McLaren targets the identical efficiency, design, and performance benchmarks of its coupes, thus constructing one thing of a bridge between coupe and convertible foes.
To see how disruptive McLaren drop-tops have change into, we ventured to Phoenix, AZ, the place the brand new 600LT Spider ($256,500) and 720S Spider ($315,000) await a take a look at on highway and observe.
Styled to carry out
Although the 600LT Spider is decidedly extra track-focused than the 720S Spider, each automobiles are styled to accommodate their efficiency, reasonably than the opposite method round.
As essentially the most aggressive model of McLaren’s Sport Collection (570 nomenclature) and a member of the long-lasting longtail (LT) line, the 600LT Spider is an extended, wider, extra imposing imaginative and prescient of efficiency.