Whilst the name McLaren has been reaping success in motorsport for over 50 years, something that is equally impressive is McLaren Automotive. Officially speaking the road production arm has only existed for 6 years and after just 3 this new company was profitable. The highly competitive battleground of high performance cars has aided McLaren in developing products that just keep getting better. This is the 2016 McLaren 570S and it launches the new Sports Series of vehicles.
The sculptural silhouette possesses more curves and flowing lines than its siblings creating this pebble like shape. Approach the low-slung shape and the intricate details begin to reveal themselves. Channels and ducts control the airflow around the car which enables unique elements such as the contrasting contours along the doors. You eye naturally follows the length of the car up to its shoulders before being interrupted by carbon intakes. Buttresses slope down from the roof to meet what is a flat rear deck, Peer through the mesh grill and you might catch a glimpse of what lives beneath. The rear end is dominated by attention grabbing lighting signatures and a large diffuser. Our test car, finished in blade silver with stealth forged alloy wheels, struck a fine balance between being civilised and slightly devilish.
Open one of the elegant dihedral doors and you will find a fine example of minimalistic design. That’s not to say the interior isn’t interesting, oh no. There are plenty of cascading surfaces and convex shapes, but it isn’t cluttered. You feel that the architecture support everything that it needs and nothing unnecessary. This example was bathed in tanned leather and stitched together intricately. A pair of sports seats offer plenty of bolstering and a pleasing position at the helm. The sills of the carbon fibre monocell have been made narrower to enable more elegant ingress and egress for 570S occupants. The console consists of a pair of rounded vents that sit above a tablet inspired touchscreen display. A control panel equipped with switches and dials sits between the seats enabling the driver to tailor the chassis and engine responsiveness. The 2016 McLaren 570S also has a generous 144 litre boot, larger than some key rivals, and so the door is open for everyday use.
Pressing the starter button of the 2016 McLaren 570S fires this supercar into life. An eruption of revs settles into a deep idle. A digital display is awoken and the pistons are pumping behind you in the cars 3.8 litre twin-turbocharge heart. Under your right foot is 562 BHP and 600Nm of torque. Said figures enable 0-60 MPH to be completed in 3.1 seconds and it won’t stop until the 204 MPH barrier is broken. Despite being something of an entry-level machine for McLaren, the 570S certainly packs a punch. Set off at a sedate speed with the car in its tamest mode and you may miss the seamless 7 speed gearbox getting on with its job. When left to its own devises the McLaren is perfectly pleasant, with excellent all-around visibility. The ride is firm, it is a supercar after all, but it isn’t pelvis punishing. Begin to introduce a faster pace to the car and it starts to come alive. The steering is bristling with feedback and has just the right level of resistance to be a satisfying tool to use. There is just a whiff of turbo lag, but once spooled up this British beauty sucks you back into your seat as it fires you down the road like a torpedo. The all encompassing surge of acceleration is mind-blowing but also manageable thanks to set of carbon brakes. Lean on them, absorbing the communication they provide as you tip this 2016 McLaren 570S into a technical sequence of bends, delivers a huge sense of confidence. This chassis is precise, but it does demand that the driver is involved in executing its impressive acts. On slightly greasy British roads the car needs to be tempered to maximise the grip levels available. That is not necessarily a bad thing as it balances that man and machine equation. By not being a “fire and forget” weapon it is more inthralling to drive. However, the real fun to be had is when you turn the car up to maximum attack and put the gearbox in manual mode. As the tarmac dried the cars Pirelli tyres took a firmer hold of the road and allowed for greater exploitation of the McLaren 570S’ performance. Immediate shifts, met with synapse singeing responses to inputs. Impressive would be an understatement.
This may well be dubbed the “baby McLaren” but the truth is that the 2016 McLaren 570S is anything but child’s play. It is highly involving and comes with a stimulating V8 roar as you push on. With this supercar I think McLaren have cracked it… £148,150 buys you one of the greatest machines to possess four wheels.
By Tyler Heatley