McLaren’s Super Series

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The Super Series testing under wraps

Beyond the realms of possibility for most people on the planet, the upcoming second-generation McLaren Super Series is getting a new engine in the form of a tasty 4.0L twin-turbocharged V8. Though McLaren aren’t confirming the concrete details until the launch of the model at the Geneva Motor Show next month, they do say that acceleration to 200km/h will take 7.8 seconds, and 10.3 seconds to complete a standing quarter mile. For reference, the Ford GT will take 10.8s to complete the quarter mile, and 10.6s for the Ferrari 488. In other words, it’s going to be quite fast.

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There’s a (second) new McLaren in town

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In the wake of the McLaren P1, the supercar the world just can’t get enough of, comes yet another beast from the British automaker – the McLaren 650S. Named for its power output (650PS in metric power), this will undoubtedly be a truly exhilerating car. Mid-engined, its top speed will be 331kph, with 0-60 times of just 3.1 seconds. The 3.8L V8 turbo engine churns out a most impressive 641 bhp, regulated through a 7 speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox.

Things can get a little confusing, quickly. It’s a little like an updated 12C, yet in the McLaren line-up, it joins the range alongside the 12C – though higher in the pecking order – and the fabulous P1. Wherever it takes its design cues from, it really is a beautiful car. McLaren say the car’s design 05_mclaren_650s_coupewas inspired by the sold-out P1, and on the front, the P1’s influence is obvious. Aerodynamics is the name of the game here, and an integrated front splitter increases downforce while unique door blades just behind the front wheels also contribute to front end grip and balance. The bodywork is functional as well as beautiful; aerodynamic performance is the same as the 12C yet the air is worked more efficiently – at 150mph downforce levels are increased by 24 per cent, according to the company.

At the back the McLaren Airbrake (originally fitted to the 12C and 12C Spider) can be found, deploying whenever the car senses extra downforce might just come in handy. Beneath this the three-piece bumper, which isn’t too different from the GT3 version of the McLaren 12C, rounds out the car nicely.

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Wiping out the wiper

Though this may be more of an issue for those unfortunates with OCD, the fact is that windscreen wipers can often be as much of a nightmare as a lifesaver.

Pictured: Not fun
Pictured: Not fun

Most of us will have been there at one stage of another; watching the wipers drag themselves across your windscreen with an unmerciful screech, dragging dirt, dust and flies backwards and forwards across the glass, leaving those horrid streaks in their wake. While this complaint may sound a little pedantic, I assure you, it certainly isn’t.

Thankfully, there may be a solution, courtesy of Science, and super car maker, McLaren. The auto company are currently working on top secret plans to make the windscreen wiper a thing of the past. Believed to be an adaptation of technology currently used on fighter jets (is there any other way of making something seem awesome?), the design will apparently involve the creation of what could and will henceforth be described as a force field of sorts (it gets better and better) across your windscreen using high frequency sound waves, meaning things like water and insects won’t be able to rest on the glass.

McLaren have said that the new system could make cars more fuel efficient with weight savings, though any savings could probably be doubled if you drove in shorts rather than trousers, or left your bag at home. The new ‘force field’ system could be in place on McLaren vehicles by 2015, and it’s thought that if it’s successful, mainstream adoption will quickly follow, as if any car design updates involving the mere mention of force fields could be anything other than hugely successful.

Now, onto the final frontier of automotive design perfection – covering that blasted gap between the visor and the rear view mirror.