McLaren showed its newest supercar to the public this month at the 2017 Geneva auto show, but behind closed doors the company's talking about what's next. Not the next car, but rather the next "F1."
The company insists that it's not looking to replace the F1, rather that its next hypercar, code-named BP23, will be an homage to the legendary Gordon Murray design. It will even feature the famous three-seat, central driving layout.
The car, which we first learned about last fall, will be curated by McLaren's personalization division, MSO, and is meant to showcase the capabilities of the division, just as MSO's first car, the X-1, did back in 2012. The BP23 code name signifies that the new car is MSO’s second Bespoke project and has three seats.
According to company executives, the BP23 will be powered by a 4.0-liter V-8 paired with a hybrid system and will surpass that of every car built by McLaren so far in top speed and horsepower—including the P1. The car will also be the most aerodynamic McLaren road car to date.
Just 106 examples—the number matches the build run for the F1—are slated for production and all have already been spoken for, including about 30 headed to buyers in the United States. McLaren says it told buyers not to expect a special edition—no long tail like the F1—convertible or track edition. All 106 cars will be grand tourers only.
Bringing the car into the U.S. will be especially tricky for buyers, who will have to apply to license the mega-fast cars as "show and display" vehicles if they ever want to drive them on public roads—something McLaren says they're customers were happy to risk.
The car costs £1.9 million (approximately $2.3 million) and McLaren says more than 300 buyers applied to purchase it.
Although deliveries only begin in 2019, buyers will start specifying their cars soon. According to McLaren, the car will have numerous touches and tributes from the F1, but officials insist that it's only an homage and not a direct successor.
Despite all of the similarities to the F1 that have been announced—106 units, hood scoop, three seats, superlative speed—Gordon Murray wasn't involved with the design or layout.
Times change, but the seats stay the same.