McLaren Just Built a Three-Seat 720S to Preview its Successor to the P1
The F1’s innovative interior makes a comeback in this crazy muleby Ciprian Florea, on
While the McLaren P1 was a fantastic supercar in just about any department, many die-hard fans felt that it missed an essential feature: the three-seat layout of the iconic F1. McLaren apparently took note of this complaint and confirmed that its next hypercar will have three seats and the driver will sit in the middle, just like in a Formula One car. Described as a hyper GT and often referred to as the BP23 or the P15, McLaren’s new flagship is still a mystery as far as design and drivetrain go. But the Brits just unveiled an early version of its cockpit in a modified version of the 720S.
Earlier today McLaren posted a photo on Facebook showing a 720S supercar wrapped in swirly, black and white camouflage. Nothing out of the ordinary if you ignore the wrap, but things become a bit unusual when you look at the windscreen and notice the driver and the steering wheel placed in the middle of the cockpit. Another image, this time from the inside, shows the mule being driven on a race track, once again with the driver sitting in the rather unusual position for a road-legal vehicle. Although McLaren didn’t have much to say about it, it’s pretty obvious that we’re being given a sneak peek of the upcoming supercar’s interior.
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The F1 Finally Makes a Comeback
The three-seat cockpit that drove every supercar enthusiast mad is finally returning to a production model
Granted, the F1 will remain unique, and no modern supercar will be able to replace it, but the spectacular three-seat cockpit that drove every supercar enthusiast mad is finally returning to a production model.
The chopped-up 720S looks completely different from the inside. The dashboard appears to have come from a full-fledged race car, with the steering wheel flanked by rectangular elements that hold loads of buttons and switches. It looks as if random parts have been put together and the flat instrument cluster atop the dash doesn’t do much to change that feeling but, this is a prototype after all, and it should be treated just like that.
As in the F1, there are two more seats placed on each side of the driver
Of course, the most spectacular feature is the center-mounted driver seat. As in the F1, there are two more seats placed on each side of the driver, which turns this awkward 720S into a three-seat. Also, like in the F1, the passenger seats are mounted further back and are significantly smaller. Another thing to notice is the two large displays hanging from the ceiling at each corner of the windshield. Whether these are actual production parts or just a system design for track testing is still a mystery, but they look pretty cool.
Nothing else can be extracted from these photos, but we now know for a fact that development of the upcoming McLaren supercar is going well and it might not be long until we see the P15 testing on public roads.
Read our speculative review on the 2020 McLaren P15.
Read our full review on the 2018 McLaren 720S.
Read our full review on the 1993 McLaren F1.