The Murray T.50s may preview a future Le Mans-ready version

Legendary automotive designer Gordon Murray promised that his latest supercar, the T.50, will deliver the best driving experience ever. Powered by a bespoke V-12 capable of revving at over 12,000 rpm that sends all the power to the back axle via a manual transmission, the T.50 is a proposition that’s almost impossible to rebuke and that’s before anyone’s got the chance to drive it.

Consider also just how light the car is given it had to go through all the tests modern cars go through to be approved for the road and that’s when the potential of the T.50s shines through. Why? Because the T.50s is a T.50 that lacks all the stuff that makes the latter street-legal and on top, you get more go-fast bits to make the package that more likely to turn your brain into toothpaste.

Murray T.50s or your one-stop-shop for instant stardom at track days

The Murray Automotive T.50, which we’ve covered extensively here at TopSpeed.com, isn’t out yet. In fact, we’re a couple of years away from the first cars being delivered yet the company behind it is already cooking up an even hotter version. We’ve talked again and again about the two decades Murray spent in the world of racing - more to the point, in F1 - and we’ve also addressed Murray’s previous foray into supercar building that ended with the rather good F1. By ’rather good’ we, of course, mean good enough to win Le Mans on its first attempt as a thinly disguised road car.

Back in October of 2019, we reported that Murray is keen to see the car race at Le Mans, a different stance than the one the designer had back in the McLaren F1 days when it was customer interest that pushed Murray back in the wind tunnel to develop the race-bred F1 GTR.

While we don’t know when the T.50 will land at Le Mans, we know for a fact that the company has been in discussions with the ACO, organizer of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and is evaluating either a GTE or a Le Mans Hypercar version.

Both Koenigsegg and Brabham have taken an interest in the ACO’s replacement for the current LMP1 regulations although the emergence of the Le Mans Daytona Hybrid class (that should debut in 2022) has shuffled the cards a bit with most interested parties now shifting towards the cheaper LMDH platform that will be balanced to run at the same pace as the Hypercars in a common class.

Introducing the T.50s: A racing-focused version of the T.50 supercar that will be even lighter, faster, and more powerful. https://www.instagram.com/p/CErieuyl3ug/?igshid=jht4gs0srwnm

Posted by Gordon Murray Automotive on Thursday, September 3, 2020

Regardless of when or, indeed, if we see the Murray T.50 in a sanctioned race series, we’re now certain that we’ll see some on the race tracks and we’re not talking about the 100 street-legal T.50 examples.

That's because Murray Automotive has just upped the ante even more by revealing the T.50s

The T.50s features a revised aerodynamic package complete with a new splitter, side skirts, and a slightly augmented diffuser in accordance with the delta-shaped rear wing that is connected to an LMP-esque spine that starts at the edge of the roof scoop. At 1,962 pounds dry it is a whopping 207 pounds lighter than the already ultra-light T.50 that was designed to weigh under a ton.

At speed, the car generates 3,306 pounds or downforce or 170% of its dry weight.

The Cosworth-built 3.9-liter, naturally aspirated V-12 still revs all the way to 12,100 rpm but the unit has been prepped for the abuse of track usage with redeveloped camshafts and cylinder heads in place of the already ultra-efficient ’standard’ ones. The fan in the back is obviously still functional and cooperates as in the road car with the splitter, sleek underbelly, and active diffuser and rear flaps to create downforce or, if needed, reduce drag. The fixed rear wing - something Murray didn’t want to see on the road car, hence the use of the fan - is similar in shape to the one on the Brabham-BMW BT52, Nelson Piquet’s title-winning car from 1983 which is another Murray design.

"With an unwavering focus on performance, and free from road-going legislation and maintenance considerations, the T50s will achieve astonishing performance on track, demonstrating the full extent of the car’s capabilities," Murray said. "We’ve thrown everything at pushing this car beyond the levels of anything that’s been done before – it’s a celebration of British engineering and our team’s extensive motorsport experience."

Inside, there are only two seats remaining: the driver’s seat in the middle and another on the side for a passenger as the third seat’s been deleted (as well as sound-deadening materials and other bits and pieces) to save weight. Also gone is the manual transmission which has been replaced by an all-new six-speed Instantaneous Gearchange System (IGS) pre-selector ’box from Xtrac. The paddles for this transmission replace the paddles for the indicators, lights, and wipers found on the road car.

Helping the car stop from what will certainly be an impressive rate of speed are six-piston Brembo ceramic brakes in the front and four-piston units in the back respectively, all semi-hidden behind bigger magnesium rims. Murray says the re-designed brake ducts make 3Gs of braking force possible again and again. But before each of the 25 T.50s examples hit the track, their owners will go through the thrill of seeing how they get made.

"I’d like each of the 25 cars to be completely unique from set-up to paint finish. There will be nothing like the experience of driving this car,” Murray stated. He also added that each customer will be able to set up his seat and pedals to his liking and will also have an engineer come to his aid on matters regarding the car’s setup. This will be needed if Murray’s plans to see the car compete in a brand-new SRO-blessed class called GT1 (under the GT Sports Club banner) come to fruition. The GT Sports Club is an amateur-focused series running in parallel with the GT World Challenge Europe that currently features older GT3 cars and GT2 machinery. If the T.50s will run as a ’GT1’ car it will be the first GT1 car in almost a decade as the last generation of GT1 cars was retired at the end of 2011. Those, of course, were less unusual race cars lacking moving aero parts but were about as powerful as the T.50s developing somewhere in the region of 650-700 horsepower.

The T50s will be formally unveiled towards the end of 2020 with more details expected to come next year.

What we do know, however, is how much one will cost: $4.1 million. And about 50% of the 25-car batch has already been spoken for. Yes, we too thought there was talk of a global recession hitting the world fairly soon...

Further reading

2020 Murray T.50

The Murray T.50 Fixes Everything That Gordon Murray Didn’t Like About The McLaren F1

The Murray T.50 Versus The Current Crop Of Hypercars

The Secrets of The Murray T.50’s Fan

Source: Motor Sport Magazine

Michael Fira
Associate Editor and Motorsport Expert - fira@topspeed.com
Mihai Fira started out writing about long-distance racing like the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans. As the years went by, his area of interest grew wider and wider and he ever branched beyond the usual confines of an automotive writer. However, his heart is still close to anything car-related and he's most at home retelling the story of some long-since-forgotten moment from the history of auto racing. He'll also take time to explain why the cars of the '60s and '70s are more fascinating than anything on the road today.  Read More
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