McLaren Hybrid Tests on the Space Shuttle Runway
The McLaren Speedtail in-becoming. If nothing else, a wonderful image. (Photos: McLaren)
The image above is the McLaren Hyper-GT prototype ‘XP2’, a.k.a., Speedtail. The vehicle, which has just started production at the McLaren Production Center in Woking, UK, has just completed high-speed validation testing at the Johnny Bohmer Proving Grounds at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
“The what?” you might wonder. (We did.)
Turns out that NASA built a runway for the Space Shuttle. It is three miles long and is so flat there is just 0.25-inch difference end-to-end.
And now it can be used for high-speed testing.
In the case of McLaren, test driver Kenny Brack ran the car at up to 250 mph on the track more than 30 times.
The Speedtail, which has a carbon fiber body and is the most aerodynamically efficient McLaren ever built, is a hybrid. A hybrid that produces 1,055 hp and 848 lb-ft.
It has a straight-line acceleration (which is what the runway is all about) of 0 to 186 mph in less than 13 seconds and the aforementioned top speed of 250 mph.
This is a plug-in hybrid except that it doesn’t have a plug: it uses inductive, or wireless, charging for the battery.
Incidentally: there will be just 106 of these vehicles built.
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