Supercars combine extraordinary performance, exotic equipment, small production numbers and sky-high prices. But even among the highest echelon of supercars, the 2018 McLaren 720S reigns alone.
The new McLaren’s singular status is a reflection of the car’s combined emotional appeal and driving dynamics.
Visually, the new McLaren is a mixed media artist’s nirvana. The carbon-fiber chassis is called a “monocage” design. It’s blanketed with panels of sculpted aluminum. The design goal is to steer fresh air through the doors and into the engine department. What a concept — a futuristic work of art ready for current-day use in supercar stardom.
With the intakes hidden, a near-flush underbody and an open rear fascia, the 720S is unmistakably a McLaren. But there’s a freshness to the manufacturer’s traditional ways.
A turbocharged 4-liter V8 with 710 horsepower, the new McLaren’s engine is mid-mounted and features a 7-speed dual-clutch automated gearbox and rear-wheel drive.
The lightweight (2,900 pounds) mass and superior power result in performance fanatics’ fantasies come alive. Acceleration from 0-60 mph takes 2.8 seconds, and 0-100 mph is accomplished in 5.5 seconds. A quarter-mile gallop is completed in 10.1 seconds. The top speed is 212 mph. The specs provide drivers never-ending doses of adrenaline.
Getting ready for the speed fix is another McLaren wonder. The twin dihedral doors swing open, and a cabin as plush, sophisticated and streamlined as a Gulfstream jet is unveiled. It’s tight quarters, but sensory pleasing with a heavy mix of carbon fiber and top-grade leather.
Supercars aren’t always known for their smooth rides. The new McLaren is an exception. The 720S features a suspension system that combines hydraulics and state-of-the-art processors. The car grips the road and offers a surprisingly smooth ride in Comfort, Sport and Track modes. It’s always good to have choices.