Engineering

McLaren Tech Club reveals the secret behind the Senna GTR’s wing

The latest episode of the McLaren Tech Club covers the wing of the Senna GTR.

Photo courtesy of McLaren

Ayrton Senna was a monster on the track, hitting the apex and flying down the backstretch in ways that made crowds the world over fall in love with his capability. The McLaren Senna, a track-horned road car was designed in the spirit of Senna, the man.

The next-level variant of the McLaren, the Senna GTR, takes that athleticism a step further with a car, "designed to deliver the most extreme, raw and engaging driving experience possible," according to the super luxury automaker. They call the vehicle "mind-bendingly fast", which makes it a perfect fit for a track day.

2020 McLaren Senna GTRThe wing on the Senna GTR provides 1,000 kg of downforce.Photo courtesy of McLaren

In the second episode of the McLaren Tech Club series, the company's principle designer Esteban Palazzo discussed the carbon fiber wing on the Senna GTR and why it makes the car so good.

When designing the car, McLaren engineers set out to give the car 1,000 kg (2205 pounds) of downforce at maximum deployment. That's 25 percent more downforce than the traditional Senna. The heralded McLaren P1 offered just 640 kg of downforce at 150 mph.

How did they do it? They substantially reworked the exterior surfaces of the car, giving it a huge front splitter, integrated rear-wing endplates, and a new diffuser. Oh yeah, and that huge wing.

That helps the car stick to the track when it's busy achieving the fastest McLaren lap times outside Formula 1.

The beating heart of the McLaren Senna GTR is a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 engine that achieves approximately 813 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque. Its carbon fiber body weighs just 2619 pounds and rides on a motorsports chassis.

The total engineering package is designed to deliver a raw racing experience. It's beyond engaging. The well-engineered wing helps you ride the line between control and out of control and, quite possibly, life and death.

Watch the McLaren Tech Club interview with Palazzo here:

McLaren Tech Club - Episode 2 - McLaren Senna GTRwww.youtube.com

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The IIHS may increase the speeds it uses to test advanced driver aids.

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently announced that it is considering changing the speeds it uses to test vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention systems. The agency currently tests the systems at 12 and 25 mph, but says that the speeds don't accurately represent the types of crashes the safety tech is meant to prevent.

Front crash preventionwww.youtube.com

Automatic emergency braking (AEB) is designed to notify of a possible collision and help respond with automatic application of braking. Just like a human using the brake pedal, it can stop the car, but higher speeds make it difficult to stop in time. The new tests would be conducted at 35 to 45 mph, which is the range where a large number of rear-end crashes occur. As Automotive News noted, an IIHS study showed 43 percent of rear-end crashes occur at speeds of 45 mph or less, so it's important to have a test that shows how well the tech performs at those levels.

A whopping 85 percent of 2022 vehicles earned a "Superior" rating in the current testing regime, so the IIHS will remove it from 2023 testing and Top Safety Pick award evaluations. Their view is that, since the majority of vehicles meet the criteria, it's no longer an accurate way of evaluating performance. In its place, the agency introduced a night test for automatic emergency braking systems that will begin next year.

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The new Type R set a Suzuka Circuit lap record.

Honda

The new Honda Civic somehow improves on the formula laid out by its numerous predecessors and does so with style, refinement, and value. The Civic Si built on that foundation with a potent turbocharged engine and solid handling, but Honda's not done with the Civic. The automaker just teased the new Civic Type R, and it set records at Japan's Suzuka Circuit during a recent testing session.

The All-New 2023 Type R Achieves Track Record at Suzukawww.youtube.com

The Type R lapped Suzuka Circuit in 2 minutes, 23.120 seconds, a record-breaking lap for a front-wheel drive car. The video features neat telemetry information on-screen during the lap as well, but the real excitement comes later when full specs are revealed.

Honda's been understandably mum on details on the new Type R's powertrain and performance numbers, but the car is expected to carry the same powertrain with its predecessor. The 300-horsepower turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine made that car a force to be reckoned with, so the 2023 Civic Type R will likely continue carrying that torch.

Honda Civic Type RHonda will fully reveal the car this summer. Honda

Honda will reveal the car in all its glory this summer. As for pricing, the previous car started around $38,000, so the new model should be around there to start. That, of course, is before dealers mark it up and other lucky buyers snap them up for insane resale on an auction site.

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