McLaren’s upcoming hybrid supercar finally has a name: Artura. The company confirmed the moniker on Monday, and it will be applied to the first vehicle out of Woking using the new McLaren Carbon Lightweight Architecture and High-Performance Hybrid system.
There’s kind of a lot riding on the Artura. Every McLaren product since the MP4-12C in 2011 has used a similar structure and twin-turbo V8 engine. The Artura will be a very different beast, propelled by a twin-turbo V6 and batteries. McLaren promises those batteries will deliver enough electric-only range for “everyday emission-free urban journeys.” That distance should be about 20 miles, according to a report from Autocar.
If history is any indication, the underpinnings and powertrain of the Artura are going to inform those of McLarens for probably the next decade, as the brand looks to electrify its entire lineup. The new name signals a shift from the alphanumeric nomenclature the carmaker uses for most of its roster. Until now, only the marque’s most exclusive models, like the Senna and Speedtail, got highly coveted real names with vowels.
But with a new platform and new sources of power comes a new naming convention. Though I have to say, if anything, today’s announcement makes the Artura’s exterior — which has been seen only camouflaged so far — look all the more underwhelming. We’re on the precipice of a new era of McLaren road cars, and the Artura pretty much just looks like another 720S offshoot, at least from its basic outline. I’ll refrain from passing judgment until we see the thing without all the swirls, but I have to be honest: My hopes aren’t high for a dramatic redesign.
The Artura will arrive at a pivotal time for McLaren which, like so many companies, has been struck hard by the global pandemic. In May, it announced a drastic restructuring plan that involved laying off 1,200 employees. The automaker’s pipeline of vehicles in the works, which stood at 18 two years ago, has unsurprisingly slowed as well, according to MotorAuthority. It’s even put its fabulous headquarters up for sale.
Thus, McLaren is assuredly looking to drum up excitement for the Artura on its debut, which is planned for the first half of next year. At launch, the Artura will replace what the manufacturer had previously called its Sports Series line, derived from the entry-level 570S.