While most of the automotive industry works to embrace and develop electric vehicles, not every automaker is in a hurry to jump on that bandwagon. Take boutique supercar maker McLaren. While companies like Lamborghini have announced their death of their gas-powered V12s, McLaren has decided that the company will be working on the next generation of hybrid ICE engines.
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Through a multi-year partnership with French engine supplier Ricardo, McLaren is working on a new generation hybrid V6 and V8 engines. McLaren says these new engines will find themselves in the next generation of the company’s supercars, which will include some as-yet-unnamed current models. This agreement will see another investment in McLaren’s Shoreham facility with 100 more engineers and technicians being brought on to make the powertrains.
Ricardo and McLaren first partnered up in 2011 with the 12C. That car was powered by a 3.8 liter twin turbo V8 developed in house between the two companies. In the 12 years since, McLaren says over 34,000 engines have been produced by the two companies.
While it’s not known what car (or cars) this engine is going in, we do know that McLaren is working on a next-gen flagship supercar that this hybrid engine will supposedly be used in. As for why the company isn’t developing an EV super car or powertrain, it would seem McLaren’s CEO doesn’t think they’re particularly exciting in supercars.
Speaking at the FT Future of the Car Summit, The Telegraph reports McLaren CEO Michael Leiters doesn’t think EV tech is advanced enough yet to deliver the driving performance McLaren expects due to the weight of the batteries.
“Today, battery technology is not yet mature. If you go sporty, if you want to enjoy yourself at the weekend, if you go on a racetrack, it’s not yet the right technology,” he said.
While it’s great to see the company will be one of the few left in the world still making V8 ICE engines for the foreseeable future, it looks as if fans wanting a McLaren EV won’t be seeing one anytime soon.
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