The new car, which is referred to internally as “son of P1,” will be the next instalment in McLaren's Ultimate Series, which in the past year has been augmented with the arrival of the Speedtail and Elva.
It will also be electrified, though don't expect a battery-electric challenger to the likes of the Lotus Evija and Rimac C_Two. McLaren has been testing EV technology since at least 2017 and has been consistent with the stance that the tech won't be ready for supercar and hypercar applications until the second half of the decade—at the earliest.
“I like EVs,” Flewitt said in his interview. “I’ve driven them a lot lately and for regular use, they’re responsive, refined and have incredible performance. But the charging times are really restrictive.”
Based on past interviews with McLaren insiders, Autocar predicts the P1 successor will follow a similar route to the Porsche 918 Spyder, by combining an electric front axle with an internal-combustion engine—possibly augmented by an electric motor—at the rear axle for hybrid all-wheel drive. The engine in question will likely be a turbocharged V-6.
Ferrari has already gone down this route with its SF90 Stradale, and so has Mercedes-AMG and Koenigsegg with their respective One and Gemera hypercars. The Gemera is a bit different however as its internal-combustion component, a turbocharged inline-3, powers the front axle.
The P1 features a turbocharged V-8 and electric motor at the rear axle only. The combo is good for 903 horsepower and 663 pound-feet of torque.
The car was heralded as the successor to the legendary F1, though McLaren gave that particular honor to the more recent Speedtail. Meanwhile, the designer of the F1, Gordon Murray, is working on his own successor to the F1. It's called the T50, and is due in 2022.