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2019 McLaren Senna is a street-legal race car - image 1

2019 McLaren Senna is a street-legal race car

by Ronan Glon

The Senna makes not the slightest concession in the name of comfort or looks.

McLaren's newest Ultimate Series model honors Ayrton Senna, the Brazilian Formula 1 pilot who won three world championships before dying in an accident during the 1994 edition of the San Marino Grand Prix.

The British company explains it designed the Senna with a single mission in mind: "to be the ultimate McLaren track-concentrated car for the road." To that end, the firm's research and development department made not the slightest concession in the name of comfort, looks, or usability.

McLaren stresses the model isn't a direct successor to the sold-out P1, a fact which becomes immediately evident after a glance at the specifications sheet. While the P1 was a fairly advanced hybrid, the Senna relies exclusively on a V8 engine. The mid-mounted, twin-turbocharged unit makes 789 horsepower and 590 pound-feet of torque, figures which earn it the distinction of being the brand's most powerful internal combustion engine.

The eight-cylinder spins the rear wheels with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Performance specifications aren't available yet, but they should be nothing short of jaw-dropping.

The Senna's carbon fiber chassis and body panels help keep its weight down to just 2,641 pounds. The model also benefits from a full hydraulic suspension with adaptive dampers and what McLaren calls its most advanced braking system yet. The coupe rides on Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R tires developed specifically for it.


McLaren will build just 500 examples of the Senna. Production will begin in the third quarter of next year. Pricing starts at 750,000 British pounds, a sum which converts to about $1 million, and the entire production run is already spoken for.

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