Here is a bluffers guide to driving a McLaren 570 GT (or any other Mclaren for that matter!).
- The wing doors need less space to open than a conventional door – although one needs to open them fully to gain access (there’s no half way point).
- Be careful in a low-roof multi-storey as there have been cases of the doors hitting the roof.
- Set aside some time to understand the infotainment system. It’s not as intuitive as it could be but otherwise functions well.
- The heating controls and heated seats are accessed via the system too.
- The car has a USB port well-hidden in the centre arm-rest.
- Finally, the electric seat adjustment buttons are among the silliest I’ve ever used.
It’s said to be the most road-biased McLaren to date but don’t go thinking the 570 GT is anything less than a supercar.
Like a thoroughbred Lamborghini, Porsche or Aston Martin, the ‘softer’ cabin materials and lush trim can’t hide the fact this GT is capable of 204mph and 0-60mph in under four seconds.
It also has that supercar ability to male you feel like you are travelling at 50mph when the speedo is registering 75mph.
That twin turbo V8 is barely audible in the cabin at low speed – then rips into life when you find an open road long enough to enjoy the power it can serve up.
The 570 GT is impressive to look at and drive. It’s also spoiling for fight whenever the opportunity arrises..
It’s difficult to criticise the 570 GT. It’s not perfect but I can’t think of a more usable ‘everyday’ supercar.
What’s especially wonderful about the McLaren is that it is easy to drive. Just as the Golf GTI makes every driver feel like a hero, the McLaren instils confidence.
I still have issues with the infotainment system, which isn’t as intuitive as it could be – and windscreen wipers that take an age to activate.
Otherwise it’s a car you want to be in all the time. If you’re ever lucky enough to drive one, savour every minute….
I’ve just returned from a two-week tour of New Zealand – organised by McLaren it was for owners from around to world to gather and celebrate the life of company founder Bruce McLaren.
They came from as far afield as Hong Kong and California, enjoying some of the best roads in the Southern hemisphere.
There were plenty of models on offer but I became unreasonably attached to the 570 GT. It may weigh some 35kg more than the standard 570S but that’s because McLaren has added some rather lovely extra standard equipment.
That includes a leather trimmed load area and a glass roof. Perhaps more importantly, McLaren has retuned the suspension to offer a more comfort-orientated set-up for GT adventures.
Even the quieter exhaust system makes for more enjoyable long distance travelling – and that opening rear screen also increases luggage capacity by 90 litres to what is already available under the bonnet.
I think I’ve finally found a car I want more than an Aston Martin Vantage V12 S…
June 7 I didn’t appreciate how loud the 650S could be – until I watched it disappear down the driveway.
Even with the roof open, or the rear screen lowered, you don’t get the full blast of the McLaren exhausts like those stood behind it.
No wonder I’ve attracted so much attention. It makes the acoustic exhaust systems of Porsche, Bentley and even Maserati sound weedy by comparison.
Obviously, I’ll miss the McLaren but I should say this. It’s such an outrageous spectacle that I wonder what place it has on our roads.
After driving the 650S for five days I realised there are very few places you can enjoy half the power and performance it has on tap.
For that reason, I think it belongs on the racetrack and not on a British A road…
It’s difficult trying to convey how fast the McLaren accelerates. I’ve driven the brilliant Nissan GT-R and all manner of exotica but the 650S is the first machine that leaves me in absolutely no doubt I could lose my driving license very quickly.
Because the windscreen is so large and the McLaren sits low on the road, it initially feels faster than the speedo read-out. Then I’ve become used to that and discovered guess what – the 650S is ridiculously fast.
At one stage yesterday, I actually had to double check the speedo wasn’t giving me a reading in kilometres. Nope, I really was still accelerating away at 95mph without fireworks from the engine.
Imagining travelling at light speed rather than mph. Other cars just become annoying blips on the radar – nothing stops the relentless surge of the 650S…
So, could you really live with a McLaren 650S as a daily drive? I mean, you might like to think you could but really – seven days a week?
Provided you don’t get paranoid about people pointing an iPhone at you on every corner, then possibly yes.
It’s comfortable enough – although getting in isn’t pretty – and the 650S comes with a couple of bonus features.
The first is a proper-sized boot under that front bonnet. It’s huge and large enough to hide the body of the McLaren dealer you’ve just stolen it from.
It also has a stalk on the steering column that allows the suspension to raise the car for uneven ground and creeping over speed bumps.
Obviously there’s no glove box, it’s pretty noise in the cabin and that large windscreen makes the cockpit warm in bright sunlight.
But yes, where do I sign?