McLaren 720S Spider revealed
McLaren Automotive is expanding its Super Series product family with the introduction of a second new model under the £1.2bn Track25 business plan with its convertible supercar : the new 720S Spider.
The design foundations of the new McLaren Spider are the forms introduced in 2017 with the 720S Coupé. Combining to maximise downforce, minimise drag, enhance powertrain cooling and optimise aerodynamic performance, these shapes produce an overall appearance akin to a futuristic sculpture, formed by the air that flows over, under, around and through it. A new, electrically actuated Retractable Hard Top (RHT) is integrated into the design, as are new buttresses.
Like all McLaren cars, the new 720S Spider has a carbon fibre structure at its core, in this case designated Monocage II-S. The Monocage II-S is a development of the Coupé ’s Monocage II, without the central ‘spine’ running front to rear above the cabin. The rearmost section of the upper structure is also unique to the Spider, to accommodate the Retractable Hard Top; additionally, the header rail across the top of the windscreen has been revised, to integrate the central latching mechanism.
To accommodate the Retractable Hard Top, the Monocage II-S features a new carbon fibre upper structure engineered to sit as close as possible to the air charge coolers and intake plenum. This maximises luggage space; there is 58 litres of stowage available under the tonneau cover with the roof raised.
The 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged McLaren V8 engine that powers the 720S Spider is unchanged from the Coupé. Mid-mounted for exceptional handling, it produces 720PS and 770Nm. Acceleration allows the supercar to reach 100km/h in 2.9 seconds and 200km/h in just 7.9 seconds. Where conditions allow, the 720S Spider will continue accelerating to a Coupé-matching top speed of 341km/h with the roof raised. Even with the roof lowered, maximum speed remains extraordinary at 325km/h.
The 720S Spider has the same ‘eye sockets’ cut deep into the front fenders and double-skinned dihedral doors immediately obvious on the Coupé.
The Retractable Hard Top (RHT) of the 720S Spider is a completely new design, with a one-piece, carbon fibre roof panel as standard. The hardtop maintains the distinctive silhouette and aerodynamic purity of the 720S Coupé and provides a full carbon fibre upper structure when the roof is closed. The folding mechanism for McLaren’s new RHT is electrically driven with the retractable hard top lowered or raised in just 11 seconds.
A centrally-mounted 8.0-inch high-resolution Central Infotainment Screen remains the primary hub for the vehicle’s functions. The interface displays audio, media, navigation, climate control and other convenience features, with all the key applications shown on a vertical carousel as well as being available via quick-access ‘hard’ keys below the screen.
The dual-zone climate control and air conditioning system has been recalibrated for the 720S Spider and is able to detect if the RHT position changes from raised to lowered or vice versa. The temperature and airflow is automatically adjusted, warming or cooling occupants according to the ambient settings already selected by increasing airflow into the cabin and moving more air to the footwell or upper cabin areas.
The active rear spoiler, which automatically activates to either decrease drag or increase downforce and also acts as an airbrake to enhance vehicle balance under heavy braking, can rise at lower speeds and to a higher position overall in the Spider application, optimising downforce and balance to ensure that performance and driver engagement is on par with the 720S Coupé. And while the rear spoiler is identical on both Coupé and Spider, the deployment mapping is bespoke to each bodystyle, the aero settings differing depending on whether the Retractable Hard Top is raised or lowered and the vehicle electronics being automatically aware of which condition it is in.
As with the Coupé, a Spider driver can choose between three Handling modes – Comfort, Sport, or Track – each focused on a different driving experience according to personal preference and conditions.
The new 720S Spider is available in the same three specifications as the Coupé, with Performance and Luxury trims extending above the standard model. Two new exterior colours – Belize Blue and Aztec Gold – have been introduced for the new Spider among a palette of 23, one of which is Supernova Silver, a Heritage colour that was first available on the McLaren 12C.
The new 720S Spider, which is available to order now from £237,000.