When it comes to rare modern supercars, the McLaren F1 is as rare and expensive as they get, with the UK carmaker building only 106 units between 1992 and 1998. Only a fraction of these were converted into GTR competition versions, with the last McLaren F1 racing car being the 1997 F1 GTR “Longtail”, named after its extended rear bodywork.
The Longtail featured the same carbon-fiber monocoque as the road-going F1, but the McLaren team designed a new nose and extended tail section, along with a wider rear wing, to maximize downforce and increase the car’s high-speed cornering abilities.
The car was equipped with a revised S70/3 6.0-liter V12 engine mated to a new six-speed Xtrac sequential gearbox. Suspension and electrical system updates, carbon fiber disc brakes and new 18-inch magnesium wheels were added to the mix, with the 1997 car being lighter than its predecessor was.
Chassis number 021R was built for the BMW Motorsport Team and competed in the 1997 FIA GT Championship, ending second overall in the hands of JJ Lehto and Steve Soper with two race wins. It was the most successful of the 10 McLaren F1 GTR Longtail chassis.
In 2002, the car underwent a complete restoration at the McLaren factory.
By Dan Mihalascu