McLaren punctuates its 50th anniversary with its latest achievement for the P1 supercar as it achieves a sub-seven minute lap time on the Nürburgring circuit. The 20.8-kilometer long circuit is one of the world’s most challenging circuits dubbed by Sir Jackie Stewart as ‘The Green Hell’. The achievement is the final development objective for the now sold out model.
The McLaren P1 was driven by McLaren Test Driver Chris Goodwin with an average speed in excess of 178 km/h through more than 150 corners, 300 meters of elevation changes and cornering forces of up to 2g. However, McLaren did not reveal what the exact laptime it achieved on the track.
"The track is like the rollercoaster from hell. However, the car feels balanced and poised throughout, and inspires you to push on with the levels of grip and all-round ability," explains Goodwin.
The production-spec Supernova Silver McLaren P1 codenamed ‘X2PR’ was fitted with standard Pirelli-developed road tires exclusive to the supercar. To prove the car’s road-to-race ability, it was driven 390 miles from Woking, England to the Nürburgring ahead of this final development test phase. On arrival at the track, ‘Race’ mode extended the active rear wing by 300mm, dropped the ride height by 50mm and saw the RaceActive Chassis Control suspension system stiffen by 300 percent – turning the P1 into a fully-focused track car at the push of a button.
"Driving the McLaren P1 at this pace, on this circuit, is the most impressive driving experience I've ever had in any road or race McLaren, on any road or track in the world," concludes Goodwin.
For the team at McLaren, good is simply not good enough. This mentality has seen the McLaren name on the top step of the podiums in Formula 1, Indianapolis 500, Can Am and at the 24 Hours of Le Mans – an achievement no other team can lay claim to. In Formula 1 alone, the team has won a quarter of all Grands Prix ever held, claiming 155 pole positions and 182 victories.
This list of achievements highlights the team’s desire to succeed, and the constant push for improvement. This mentality resonates through the entire McLaren Group, and achieving the sub-seven minute target time was just another objective on the list that the team within Automotive were determined to beat.