McLaren F1 may be resurrected as a three-seat, 700-hp GT car

Don't expect any gold foil, though.

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Nearly 25 years ago, the McLaren F1 was unrivaled on the streets. A screaming BMW V12 pushed that three-seat car to a record-breaking 243 mph. The F1 was faster, more expensive, and more exclusive than any other production car of the era. Even today, few cars have eclipsed it. Now, McLaren is rumored to be working on a successor to what some consider the greatest road car ever built.

According to Autocar, McLaren Special Operations, or MSO, is working on building the fastest GT car in the world. The car will draw influence and some cues from the original F1, but it won't be an exact recreation or retro-styled version of that car. The goal is to build the fastest vehicle in the world with three or more seats. It won't be P1 fast, but it also isn't meant to be.

The MSO division works on bespoke vehicles for customers. It deals with custom designs, from unique paint colors to one-off models. Autocar reports that a number of customers have requested something a little softer and more luxurious than what McLaren currently offers, and some have asked after a three-setup like the on the original F1. While McLaren's current offerings are fast, they lack some of the more premium touches of some competitors.

Since returning to the road-car business, McLaren has been met with both critical and commercial success. All of its vehicles use a shared carbon-fiber crash structure, modified slightly for each vehicle. All are powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8, tuned differently for each vehicle. All of their current cars have traditional a two-seat layout.

The new F1 will make use the same 3.8-liter V8, without the hybrid system of the P1, cranking out more than 700 horsepower. That would make it McLaren's second most powerful vehicle. MSO has reportedly been tasked with adapting McLaren's basic carbon-fiber monocage/monocoque for use on a three-seater, with the driver placed directly in the middle. The suspension would be a shared McLaren system, though set a little softer than in other models.

The interior, Autocar claims, will be unique to this car. Dihedral doors, bespoke switchgear, and a custom set of luggage will all be present. Every car is expected to be tailored to each owner's preferences.

It's not clear when the vehicle would go on sale, though Autocar believes it will be before the end of the decade. Supercars take years to design, and McLaren has an ambitious plan for its future. While an F1 successor may be just a rumor, it seems to make sense in light of the company's plans. While original cars go for tens of millions of dollars, expect this new one to cost around $2 million, with sales possibly capped at 64 units to match the number of original F1 road cars.

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