New Model News

The new McLaren Elva is an extreme roadster that oozes sex appeal

McLaren has introduced a new car, its lightest to date, the Elva.

Photo courtesy of McLaren Automotive

The Elva is McLaren Automotive's new Ultimate Series roadster. It's an open-cockpit two-seater based on 1960s design with 804 horsepower. Bite your lip accordingly.

The Elva name originates with the Bruce McLaren-designed M1A and McLaren-Elva M1A, M1B, and M1C of the 1960s, which were produced as consumer variants of the Group 7 McLaren race cars.

McLaren Elva 2020 2019 front The front of the car is very McLaren with a deep nose and minimal badging.Photo courtesy of McLaren Automotive

"McLaren continues to push the boundaries of supercar and hypercar development in pursuit of outstanding and unparalleled driving experiences for our customers, and the McLaren Elva epitomizes that pioneering spirit," said Mike Flewitt, CEO, McLaren Automotive. "The McLaren-Elva M1A [Mk1] and its successors are in many ways the true spiritual forerunners of today's McLarens – superlight, mid-engined cars with the highest levels of performance and dynamic excellence. It's fitting that the new McLaren Ultimate Series roadster – a uniquely modern car that delivers the ultimate connection between driver, car and the elements and with that new heights of driving pleasure on road or track – acknowledges our rich heritage with the Elva name."

The Elva retains many of McLaren's signature exterior and interior design lines. It has a low nose with animalistic McLaren badging. There are also pronounced front fender peaks and at the rear are carbon fiber rear fenders that flow into the lines of two rear buttresses that deploy to activate a roll-over protection system.

McLaren Elva 2020 2019 side tires wheels A fixed windshield can be added in some markets.Photo courtesy of McLaren Automotive

McLaren built this car to blur lines. The automaker is touting the car's "unparalleled driver engagement" and takes the stance that the absence of a roof, windscreen, and windows ensure an "incredibly immersive and enthralling experience." Cue the lambswool-lined racing goggles. A fixed windshield is also available.

The automaker has designed the Active Air Management System to deploy when the car is traveling at moderate and high speed. The technology changes the airflow of the car to keep the cockpit calm rather than the traditional rough rumble you get when you put down a soft top.

"Our mission with the McLaren Elva was to create an open-cockpit, two-seat roadster that delivers the most elemental of driving experiences," said Rob Melville, Design Director, McLaren Automotive. "Formula 1-inspired shrink-wrapped volumes create a technical sculpture that is as striking as it is remarkable, the exterior flowing into the interior in a stunning example of a new and unique McLaren 'blurred boundaries' design principle that has allowed us to seamlessly bring the outside in to further enhance driver engagement while remaining true to our philosophy of making no compromises."

McLaren Elva 2020 2019 side tires wheels roof The roofless model is a provocative design.Photo courtesy of McLaren Automotive

It gets its power from a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter McLaren V8 that is paired with a seven-speed automatic transmission. The car gets from zero to 62 mph in under three seconds. Its zero to 124 mph time is quicker than the McLaren Senna at just 6.7 seconds.

Pushing on the accelerator brings the car to life. Its Inconel and titanium quad exhaust professes a befitting throaty growl as the engine obliges.

The car has a linked-hydraulic active suspension and electro-hydrauling steering, which delivers the heightened level of feedback performance car drivers want.

This is the lightest road car that McLaren has ever built. It features a bespoke carbon fiber chassis and body, carbon fiber seats, and sintered carbon ceramic brakes.

McLaren Elva 2020 2019 back rear There is very little storage space in the Elva, but that's okay.Photo courtesy of McLaren Automotive

It rides standard on 10-spoke ultra-lightweight wheels that are shoed with Pirelli P Zero tires. Five-spoke super-lightweight forged alloy wheels and Pirelli P Zero Corsa tires are available. A vehicle lift system comes standard.

The interior is properly appointed with composite materials and the right amount of modern technology. The car's design makes the driver and passenger feel as if they're in a cocoon. McLaren has integrated the controls for the Active Dynamics system into the instrument cluster and equipped the car with drive mode switches near the gearshift paddles.

It does not comes standard with an audio system but customers can add a bespoke one at no additional cost. A 24-carat gold engine bay heat shield and 18-carat white gold or platinum badges with a TFT inlay are also available.

McLaren Elva 2020 2019 interior cockpit cabin The interior of the Elva is finished in high-quality premium materials designed to withstand the elements.Photo courtesy of McLaren Automotive

A six-point racing harness is available.

There is storage space below the car's rear tonneau cover, which is secured with soft-close latches.

McLaren is selling just 399 Elva models, which start at $1.69 million each. The final price of each car depends on the customer's level of personalization by McLaren Special Operations.

Customer deliveries of the McLaren Elva are scheduled to begin near the end of 2020.

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The new supercar is part throwback, part modern marvel.

Photo courtesy of Gordon Murray Automotive

Think of the common script for the modern supercar. Among other things, they must be reasonably uncomfortable to sit in, pass the effects of every bump in the road on to the driver, and have anxiety-inducing levels of torque that make it a chore to drive in traffic. The Gordon Murray Automotive T.50 has been designed to flip that script.

The limited edition model - just 100 will be made - promises to be the “most driver-centric supercar to be built”. It will still have a high-revving engine, lightweight and aerodynamic design, and dihedral doors like the typical supercar, but it will also be so much more.

Gordon Murray Automotive T.50 The supercar has a carbon fiber body and chassis.Photo courtesy of Gordon Murray Automotive

”Just 100 customers will share my vision, a car created to improve on the F1 formula in every conceivable way,” said Murray. “With 30 years of technological and systems advancement, now, the time is right to design the greatest analogue driver's car. I believe no other company could deliver what we will bring to market in 2022, producing this British supercar will be my proudest moment."

The car gets its name from company namesake Professor Gordon Murray. It is the 50th model, either road or track, that Murray has designed over his 50-year career.

Murray has designed the car to be free of wings, skirts, and vents. It’s look is clean, if not a bit streamlined, showing restraint that doesn't encumber performance. There is a cold-air ram induction that sits directly above the driver’s head.

The car weighs just 986kg (2,173 pounds), around one-third less than the traditional supercar. It’s body panels and chassis are made of carbon fiber. A carbon tub monocoque provides stiffness and torsional rigidity. The car’s glazing is 28 percent thinner than typical glass delivering valuable weight savings.

A rear-mounted 400mm fan helps the model achieve the “most effective aerodynamics ever seen on a road car”. It works in tandem with active rear spoilers and diffusers to increase downforce by up to 100 percent, depending on drive mode. The car has six available aero modes: Auto, High Downforce, Streamline (creates a virtual longtail), Braking, Test, V-Max Boost (raises output of engine).

Gordon Murray Automotive T.50

Photo courtesy of Gordon Murray Automtoive

The road car bit is important. Murray has designed the model to be equally as good there as on the track - a unique balance for a supercar. The model was created to be “alive” at traditional road speeds, not just high-rev track days.

The visceral experience of driving takes center stage with the car’s electronic stability protection and traction control able to be completely turned off.

At the heart of the car is a bespoke 3.9-liter V12 engine that revs to 12,100rpm. The engine is paired with a bespoke lightweight Xtrac six-speed manual transmission with an “H’ gearchange motion and regulated by a feather-light titanium pedal. Each element is crafted by a British company.

In fact, all major components are British-sourced and the model is assembled in the U.K.

The engine isn't designed to hit speed or power targets, but rather deliver the best experience for the driver. It’s the most dense naturally aspirated road car engine ever as well as the most responsive. The V12 delivers 592 horsepower and 344 pound-feet of torque.

According to a press release from the company, “Murray detests carbon or plastic engine covers so, upon raising the twin gullwing openings that span the rear half of the car, the Cosworth GMA V12 engine sits proudly on display with its cam covers, primary exhaust manifolds and inlet trumpets all taking centre stage.”

Murray has given the car a Direct Path Induction Sound, the system pioneered in the McLaren F1, to channel the sound of the throttle-induced induction growl into the cabin. The car’s carbon fiber roof panels act as an amplifier.

Gordon Murray Automotive T.50 The model’s interior blends old and newPhoto courtesy of Gordon Murray Automotive

Inside, the model has a central, jet fighter-like driving position. It's buttons and knobs are also inspired by flight and feature aerospace-grade primary and secondary controls arranged in an "ergonomic bubble" around the driver. They're analog, a refreshing change from the gas at screens and animated displays in everything from supercars to SUVs.

There's a premium audio system that features 10 speakers and Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, and Bluetooth connectivity.

There is enough seating for three adults and the company assures that ingress and egress are easy. All this in a model with about the same footprint as a Porsche Boxster.

The price tag is a hefty £2.36 million (before taxes) - that's over $3 million USD.

As part of the buying process, each T.50 customer has the opportunity to meet Murray to discuss their car and personalize it inside and out. Part of this process includes a seat, steering wheel, and pedals fitting session that will ensure the T.50 is ergonomically perfect for each client.

Customer versions of the T.50 will be built beginning in January 2022.

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The Infiniti QX55 is the company’s new crossover.

Photo courtesy of Infiniti Motors

The Infiniti QX55 was supposed to have already been seen by the public, but COVID-19 derailed the company's plans for a reveal at the New York International Auto Show. Today they're releasing the first official image of the new SUV and confirming that the model will be a 2022 model year vehicle as opposed to its original 2021 date.

AutomotiveMap has already seen the vehicle in full as part of an event last year.

In the image, just the backside of the crossover's body is shown. Even there, design lines inspired by the FX model that has long since been retired by the brand are evident.

2022 Infiniti QX55 Last year, the company teased the QX55 with a rendered image of its profile. Photo courtesy of Infiniti Motors

The model's coupe-like rear stands out as being on trend with designs of modern European SUVs with wing-like taillights reminiscent of the Q60 sports coupe flanking the rear door. Atop the rear windshield is a black design element, possibly showcasing that a two-tone paint scheme will be offered.

The picture also reveals that the model will have a rear windshield wiper, wheels, tires, and cladding (phew).

When AutomotiveMap first saw the model last year, Mike Colleran, then Vice Chairman and Global Division Vice President, Marketing and Sales Operations for Infiniti Motor Company, was quick to point out that the model has FX model bloodlines but isn't a direct FX successor.

Though it's not shown in the new photo, when the full vehicle is revealed, its lineage will be instantly apparent to brand enthusiasts that will see where a bulging hood and sleek lines that make the QX55 look as much like a throwback as it does a fast forward. Its face is commanding, but not as upright as what is seen on Infiniti's larger SUVs, including the 2020 Infiniti QX80 and the redesigned 2021 Infiniti QX60. It has its own unique grille that hasn't been seen on any other Infiniti yet.

Beyond its looks, Infiniti confirms that the QX55 will feature “innovative technologies designed to empower, engage, and connect luxury customers to the road ahead".

The automaker, a luxury arm of Nissan, will reveal the model to the public via social media on November 11 at 5:55 p.m. PST. The crossover will arrive on U.S. shores in the spring of 2021 and then be available in other regions across the globe.

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