Can You Believe It’s Been 5 Years Since We First Met The McLaren P1?

Five years have passed since McLaren revealed the P1 as a design study at the 2012 Paris Motor Show and the British supercar maker is celebrating the occasion.

The first model in McLaren’s Ultimate Series and the spiritual successor of the iconic F1, the P1 hypercar set the foundations of the company’s new golden era.

McLaren sold the entire production run of 375 examples even before the first P1 was delivered, with the company claiming that not two P1s were the same as each was custom built to the owner’s specifications.

With aerodynamic performance prioritized, the McLaren P1 came with an advanced aero agenda that helped it produce 600kg (1,323 lbs) of downforce at its electronically limited top speed of 217mph (350km/h).

Features like a F1-style DRS were fitted to change-on-demand the pitch of the rear wing, reducing drag and increasing straight-line speed. The wing could also work as an air-brake. McLaren even added two flaps under the body ahead of the front wheels to increase downforce and aero efficiency.

The first Ultimate Series McLaren was also focused on reducing its mass, with the dry weight of the P1 being just 1,395kg (3.075lbs). The incredibly stiff and lightweight carbon fiber MonoCage is the core of the P1, with all the main body panels also made from the same material. More impressively McLaren opted for not applying the top layer of resin on the interior carbon components, saving this way 1.5kg. The cabin also employed super-thin and super-light glass while there are no carpets or even sound-deadening material.

The hybrid powertrain combined a 727hp twin-turbo 3.8-liter V8 with a lightweight 176hp electric motor, producing in total 903hp. 0-62mph (100km/h) came in 2.8 seconds, with 124mph (200km/h) coming in 6.8 seconds and 186mph (300km/h) in 16.5 seconds. The P1 could even drive on pure electric mode for more than 10km (6.8 miles), in case you want to sneak out at night.

Another highlight is of course the Race mode which lowered the P1 by 50mm and stiffened the spring rates by an astonishing 300 percent, enabling the car to corner at more than 2g.

Happy fifth anniversary you beast, you still are breathtaking.


  • Blade t

    Such a great car….

  • Shtekeris

    And after 5 years this still would be my “ultimate car to own”, I love and always did like everything about it. It’s amazing!

  • ErnieB

    And after 5 years it looks like it came from the year 2050.. amazing

  • Six_Tymes

    I think the P1 is their best design and engineering work they have ever produced. although I am an extreme fan of the legendary F1 also. as far as the other cars they make, i just don’t like them. the P1 on the other hand is absolute perfection when it comes to this design language, the other cars don’t come close in my opinion. The P1 is cohesive, its legendary.

  • smartacus

    First time i saw a McLaren P1
    it was not even in USA (officially).
    I saw it at the Daytona Beach checkpoint
    of the 2014 Gumball 3000 Rally.

    • Auto

      First time I saw a p1: Sadly, not yet.

  • Belthronding Tinuviel

    True hypersport.timeless

  • Auto

    I can’t believe its has been that long from the day I got the issue of Motor Trend in the mail. It said something like this “McLaren P1. Fastest Quarter Mile Car We Have Ever Tested”

  • Honda NSX-R

    It’s a very timeless design.

  • SteersUright

    P1’s best angle is the direct rear view. Otherwise Im not a fan of its looks. Its performance is stunning though.

  • Ary Wisesa

    It’s still as beautiful and amazing as ever. And it will always be…