McLaren Boss Shoots Down Rumor About A 'New F1'

Render credit Autocar, used with permission
Render credit Autocar, used with permission

Over the week, British car magazine Autocar reported that the beloved McLaren F1 would be reborn in 2018 as the “hyper-GT” with a price of well over $2.6 million. But if you’ve already started saving your pennies, slow down a bit—according to reports, McLaren’s CEO shut down that rumor.

The denial of a new three-seater supercar from McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt came at a financial-results meeting for the company, according to both Car and Driver and the Top Gear website. The rumored F1 successor was said to feature a central driving position just like the original, and the Autocar story even said how many of the cars would be made—64, just like the original fleet of F1s.

But as much as the company loved the car, Flewitt said McLaren is “not going to make another one.”


The original Autocar story featured multiple renderings of what the now-denied F1 successor could look like. But without noticing the small “Autocar” markings in the photos, it would take readers until the very last paragraph to find out that the renderings were “speculative.” Its sources remained anonymous, but said the car would have a modified version of the manufacturer’s staple 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 engine. That would make for more than 700 horsepower and a top speed of over 200 mph.

Here’s what Car and Driver quotes Flewitt as saying about the original story, which never specifically referred to the speculated car as an F1 “successor”—rather, the “new F1” that would be “built in homage” to the original:

“I’m really not going to comment on that article,” said Flewitt, after jokingly suggesting that he would replace McLaren’s design department with Autocar’s rendering artists.

But when pressed, he admitted that customers do frequently request a modern take on the F1.

“You get asked all the time,” he said. “I regularly get asked for three seats and a V-12 and a manual gearbox. I just don’t think there’s a real business case to do one of those.”

The renderings were good—though the website wasn’t totally upfront about them—and the report was hopeful, but there won’t be another McLaren F1 in the next two years. There won’t be another F1 ever, if Flewitt’s vision remains.

Some things just can’t be replicated.

Staff writer, Jalopnik

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I regularly get asked for three seats and a V-12 and a manual gearbox. I just don’t think there’s a real business case to do one of those.

That is an interesting perspective. I suppose he believes these people won’t follow through on their requests? I presume that the circles in which he travels are more than wealthy enough to purchase such a car. Considering that every other well-known boutique sports car manufacturer seems to reliably sell out of their limited-edition specialty vehicles before they’re even built, I wonder what about the proposal makes it unprofitable.