McLaren Tests Its Cars On A Space Shuttle Landing Runway

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Reached speeds of 403km/h

The McLaren Speedtail will be delivered to customers next year – and it’s being hailed as the fastest from the brand ever. To make sure it lives up to the hype, McLaren decided to do some last-minute testing at the Johnny Bohmer Proving Grounds at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, driving the car along a space shuttle landing runway. Everything seems fine, as the Speedtail achieved 403km/h (250mph) on more than 30 runs.

McLaren’s chief test driver, Kenny Brack, was responsible for driving the car, and for reaching the incredible speeds. Multiple tests had been carried out at facilities all over the world, with the first of the 106 Speedtails being hand-assembled at the McLaren Production Centre in the UK to be delivered in February.

At almost 5.2 metres long, the carbon-fibre-bodied three-seat Speedtail is the most aerodynamically drag-efficient McLaren ever, and a showcase for the brand’s lightweight expertise. Its petrol-electric hybrid powertrain delivers the greatest power and torque of any McLaren too. The batteries self-charge as the car is driven, with no plug-in element.

McLaren’s CEO, Mike Flewitt, said, “It’s fitting that the Speedtail’s high-speed test programme concluded with multiple maximum-speed runs at a location strongly associated with pushing the boundaries of extreme performance and engineering excellence. The Speedtail is a truly extraordinary car that epitomises McLaren’s pioneering spirit and perfectly illustrates our determination to continue to set new benchmarks for supercar and hypercar performance.”

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