McLaren's expertise in carbon fibre structures - every road car built by the British manufacturer since the McLaren F1 in 1993 has had a carbon fibre chassis - underpins the construction of the new 720S; the architecture of the car is based around a new carbon fibre 'tub' and upper structure, the McLaren Monocage II. This technology delivers extreme strength and rigidity in a lightweight structure - the ideal base for any supercar. A range of aluminium alloys are also used extensively in the chassis, as well as for some body panels.
Beauty and technology in harmony The new McLaren 720S represents a dramatic step-change in McLaren Super Series' design language. Poised, compact, proportions are defined by the elegant sweep of the teardrop glasshouse, while the layered, 'shrink-wrapped' bodywork creates a futuristic, highly technical appearance. Radical innovation defines the design of the new McLaren 720S. The lean, sculpted body shape creates an instantly recognisable silhouette. Lightweight aluminium and composite bodywork wrap tautly around the contours of the carbon fibre Monocage II structure for a form with dramatic intent and striking beauty in equal measure. McLaren engineers have capitalised on the inherent structural integrity of the carbon fibre Monocage II structure to deliver unusually slim windscreen pillars and glazed C-pillars that taper from the roof in a distinctive teardrop motif. The canopy-like design also provides a feeling of 360-degree vision for occupants that is unrivalled in the supercar class, allowing light to flood into the cabin and setting a new benchmark for visibility. The aggressively contoured front bumper takes its inspiration from the McLaren P1TM. Visually dramatic, digital LED headlights are integrated within 'eye-sockets' that feature an aero duct to channel air to the low-temperature radiators and cut deep into the front fenders to produce a distinctly predatory gaze. The unit is divided into two portions by sequential indicators that sweep across a thin LED light strip, with LED headlights positioned above and the aero-duct below.
The new McLaren 720S is equipped with Static Adaptive Headlights, a pioneering technology that optimises headlight performance by changing the directional light intensity based on steering input. Of the 17 LEDs in each headlight, five provide the base, static beam pattern and the remaining 12 light according to the direction the front of the car is moving in, giving the effect of the beam 'bending' and better illuminating that area of road. Operating from standstill to maximum speed, the McLaren Static Adaptive Headlight technology gives a driver better visibility through corners, increasing comfort and safety. Other road users also benefit from being seen earlier and in greater clarity than would otherwise be the case. The Static Adaptive Headlight system also improves straight-ahead long range visibility by raising the beam pattern by half a degree - whether on dipped-or main beam - when the new 720S reaches 110km/h (68mph), increasing 'forward punch' and focusing a driver's attention further on the road ahead.
The top of the V8 engine in the new McLaren 720S is 120 mm lower than in the first generation of McLaren Super Series models, with the reduction in plenum height enabling improved rear visibility and luggage storage space. The rear of the new 720S is 145mm lower overall than a 650S, the drag-reducing, aggressive tapering of the teardrop canopy towards the rear wing enabled by lowered radiator header tank, rearward repositioning of structural airboxes and the introduction of a double CHMSL (central high-mounted stop light).
Exceptional new 720PS 4.0 V8 engine An incredibly potent and highly efficient new 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine powers the McLaren 720S. Codenamed M840T and mid-mounted for exceptionally pure handling, the McLaren-designed, twin-turbocharged engine produces 720PS and 770Nm - huge gains of 70PS and 92Nm respectively over the 3.8-litre engine in the predecessor 650S Super Series cars, achieved with a capacity increase of only 195cc. With the significantly greater power and torque - and further aided by the decrease in vehicle weight -the new 4.0-litre engine gives the McLaren 720S a thrilling power-to-weight ratio of 561PS-per-tonne in its lightest dry weight form. This comfortably exceeds the still-impressive 485PS-per-tonne output of the 650S and gives the new 720S best-in-segment power-to-weight performance. Crushing acceleration of 0-60mph in just 2.8 seconds, 0-100km/h (0-62mph) in 2.9 seconds and 0-200km/h (0-124mph) in 7.8 seconds puts the new McLaren 720S in pole position in the supercar performance league. On the way to a maximum speed of 341km/h (212mph), the standing quarter mile sprint is dispatched in 10.3 seconds. Despite the dramatic gains in accelerative performance, fuel efficiency and CO2 emissions have also improved in comparison to the McLaren 650S, respectively by 1.0 litre/100km in the combined cycle and 26g/km under the NEDC. The new M840T has a 41% component-change compared with the 3.8-litre M838T V8 engine, which continues in McLaren Sports Series models. All major components were assessed for potential enhancement and a significant number have been substantially upgraded. New, lighter pistons and connecting rods, and a stiffer, lighter crankshaft contribute to enhanced responsiveness from an engine with bore unchanged and piston-stroke increased by 3.6mm. The turbochargers and intercoolers are completely new. Specified with lightweight turbines capable of 160,000rpm, the ultra-low inertia, twin-scroll turbochargers are evidence of the determination of McLaren engineers to increase responsiveness as well as outright power. The wastegates and dump valve are electronically controlled to actively manage the build-up of power and torque from low rpm, contributing to improved engine efficiency and emissions control. New Port Fuel Injection doubles the number of injectors from eight to 16, the twin-injector solution improving fuel nebulisation and delivering improved combustion and lower emissions.
Normal service intervals for the new McLaren 720S are one year or 20,000 km (12,400miles), whichever occurs first. New vehicles will be covered by McLaren's Vehicle Warranty, which covers the vehicle for three years from purchase without mileage limitation. Paint surface is warranted for three years; visible cosmetic corrosion for five years and perforation corrosion of the vehicle body for 10 years. The new McLaren 720S is also eligible to be covered by the McLaren Extended Warranty; available from time of first purchase in 12 or 24 month periods until the vehicle is 10 years old, the warranty makes it possible to cover a 720S for up to 12 years.