Renowned worldwide for the exclusive, luxury, high-performance supercars on which it has built its reputation over the past decade, McLaren Automotive revealed another landmark model: the 765LT Spider. Carrying over the coupe’s dynamic and aerodynamic DNA with no structural compromise and only a minimal 49kg weight increase – primarily from the retractable hard top and accompanying operating mechanism – the 765LT Spider weighs in at just 1,388kg (DIN weight), which is 80kg lighter than a 720S Spider and circa 100kg lighter than its closest comparable competitor. The electrically operated, one-piece carbon fibre Retractable Hard Top (RHT) enables open-top motoring in just 11 seconds and operates at speeds of up to 50km/h, bringing the dramatic soundtrack of the quad-exit titanium exhaust system into the cabin to take driver engagement into another dimension.
Complementing the 765LT ‘Longtail’ coupe unveiled last year – all of which are sold – the new Spider is McLaren’s most powerful-ever convertible supercar and brings highest-ever levels of driver engagement to the McLaren LT experience. Engineered in addition with the other core attributes intrinsic to any McLaren Longtail – minimised weight, track-focused dynamics and optimised aerodynamics – the McLaren 765LT Spider has all of the class-leading abilities of the coupe and also meets the LT demand for exclusivity: just 765 cars will be available globally for customer order. The convertible roof design plays an integral role in the structure, featuring a carbon fibre frame within the Retractable Hard Top panel and creating a full carbon fibre shell when closed.
The Spider version of the carbon fibre MonoCage II – designated MonoCage II-S – was developed alongside the coupe monocoque and shares most of its structural elements, including the windscreen surround. Such is the strength and stiffness of the structure that no additional bracing is required over the coupe – another weight-optimising factor. At the rear of the car, carbon fibre structural supports are fully bonded into the chassis to provide rollover protection. The immense performance and dynamic prowess of the new Spider – already proven in the 765LT coupe – are enhanced by three compelling factors: the stability of its MonoCage II-S structure, the game-changing design of its one-piece Retractable Hard Top roof, and the ongoing determination of McLaren engineers to pursue the company’s philosophy of super-lightweight engineering.
Performance is ferocious, the 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine producing 765PS – giving the McLaren 765LT Spider a best-in-class power-to-weight ratio of 598PS-per-tonne at lightest dry weight – and 800Nm of torque. The 0-100km/h time often seen as a benchmark figure is 2.8 seconds (0-60mph is 2.7 seconds), with 0-200km/h (124mph) taking 7.2 seconds. The new LT Spider takes 10.0 seconds to cover 400m (¼ mile) from standstill and the car’s maximum speed is 330km/h (205mph).Transmission gear ratios have been revised for even greater engagement and performance; in-gear acceleration is 15% quicker than a 720S Spider, helping the new Longtail to achieve the fastest lap times ever posted by a convertible LT model. The MonoCage II-S differs from the coupe’s MonoCage II only at the rear, where a carbon fibre upper structure is engineered around the engine bay, and two fixed carbon fibre structural supports are bonded into the chassis to provide rollover protection.
Step inside the cockpit of the 765LT Spider and you’ll immediately spot the debossed 765LT logo on the facia and the unique numbered dedication plaque, visual clues that you have entered an exclusive space. Forward visibility is outstanding, thanks to the incredibly slim A-pillars allowed by the carbon fibre MonoCage II-S, while the sense of interior space is enhanced by the bigger, thinner roof panel of the Spider in comparison to the coupe. Key connectivity functions, including McLaren Track Telemetry (MTT), are displayed on the 8-inch, high-resolution Central Infotainment Screen, which works in conjunction with the innovative Folding Driver Display located directly in front of the driver to provide an integrated information platform. Primary functions, such as the Active Dynamics Panel, are located in the driver’s field of view.
The interior differences between coupe and Spider are minimal, the latter’s cabin having an extra element of carbon fibre upper trim which ‘flows’ from interior to exterior. The coupe’s engine window also makes way for the Spider’s folding roof mechanism. There is additional luggage space under the rear tonneau cover, as well as 150 litres of stowage at the front. The carbon fibre-shelled race seats, first featured on the McLaren P1™ and subsequently on every LT model, are trimmed in lightweight Alcantara® and provide superb support from an outstanding driving position. The McLaren Senna’s Super-Lightweight double-skinned carbon fibre race seats can be specified as an option.
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