Is this the hypercar McLaren has been rumored to work on?

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Remember the Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo concept that came out of McLaren’s fling with PlayStation back in 2017? Get ready to meet a toned-down production version of it soon, because someone’s been naughty enough to leak two pictures of the upcoming McLaren BC-03, a limited-edition hypercar that looks a lot like the Gran Turismo Sport-bound prototype.

Rumors about the upcoming limited-edition McLaren hypercar have been floating on the internet for around a year without too many details to back them up. A recent leak, however, chases the fog away on this otherwise very hot topic. Bear with us for this one.

When is the McLaren BC-03 coming out

Well, that’s a hard one. However, since the cat’s out of the bag and the two pictures leaked on Instagram have reached pretty much every corner of the automotive world, it’s safe to think that McLaren might debut the BC-03 a tad earlier than planned. Then again, the carmaker might as well stick to its initial plans and present the BC-03 at the set date. After all, a little hype can’t do any harm.

Back in October 2018, PistonHeads published a report saying that McLaren’s future hypercar will use the Vision GT’s blueprint. The same article mentioned that R&D would fall on the lap of McLaren’s very own MSO division and that once completed, the hypercar would crank out 1,150 horsepower. Baptized BC-03 (that’s Bespoke Commission 03), the hypercar would present itself as a track-focused machine with a carbon-fiber body.

Someone Leaked the Limited-Edition McLaren BC-03 And We Want More of It!
- image 864302

Now, let’s get back to what we actually know. Back when it introduced the Ultimate Vision GT, McLaren specified that it will “virtually” use a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V-8 to spin the rear wheels. Gamers would then get 1,150 horsepower and 1,275 Newton-meters (940 pound-feet) of torque to play with, as well as a curb weight of just 1,000 kilograms (2,204 pounds). With that in mind, take a look at the said leaked photos. Can you see the McLaren Senna in disguise, nicely complemented by design cues taken from the McLaren Ultimate Vision GT? We know we do, which takes us to the next question.

Did McLaren develop the BC-03 hypercar on the same platform as the Senna?

We can’t offer a definitive answer, but that’s certainly an avenue worth taken into account. Just think about it: Bugatti did the same when it concocted the Centodieci, basically using the Chiron as a starting point. And since McLaren has the mighty Senna sitting nicely in its stable, using these underpinnings for an even more extreme hypercar makes all the sense in the world. Also, don’t forget that the Ultimate Vision GT was envisioned with a 4.0-liter V-8 engine in the first place.

Coincidentally or not, the McLaren Senna happens to use such a powerplant, yet it “only” churns out 789 horsepower and 800 Newton-meters (590 pound-feet) of twist. We imagine McLaren won’t have too much trouble in boosting these figures to 1,150 horsepower and 940 pound-feet, especially with electrification at its disposal and knowing that the Ultimate Vision GT was in fact, a hybrid.

McLaren Senna specifications
Power 800 PS, 789 hp
Torque 800 Nm, 590 lb-ft
Top speed 335 km/h, 208 mph
0-100 km/h 2.8 s
Engine M840TR
Engine capacity 3,994 cc
Type 90-degree V-8
Turbo tech twin scroll, electrically-actuated turbochargers
Max RPM 8,500 rpm
Valvetrain 32 valve, DOHC, VVT
Someone Leaked the Limited-Edition McLaren BC-03 And We Want More of It!
- image 864307

Weight could also go down compared to the Senna, although 1,000 kilos (2,204 pounds) is a very optimistic figure. For the sake of comparison, the McLaren Senna tips the scales at 1,198 kilograms (2,641 pounds), so the carmaker would have to pull out a serious magic trick (or two) to shed off around 200 kilos (400+ pounds) off the hypercar’s hips.

CNET’s Roadshow contacted McLaren, but the carmaker’s answer was that it “works on a variety of unique customer projects at any given time and we don’t comment on these projects or speculation about them.” So there’s nothing coming from McLaren until an official announcement, which means we’ll just have to show patience until the BC-03 is unveiled. When will that happen? Hard to pin down a date, but it could be by the end of the year. We’ll just have to wait and see.

Further reading

2017 McLaren Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo Concept High Resolution Exterior
- image 732846

Read our full review on the 2017 McLaren Ultimate Vision Gran Turismo Concept.

Tudor Rus
Tudor Rus
Assistant Content Manager - Automotive Expert -
Tudor’s first encounter with cars took place when he was only a child. Back then, his father brought home a Trabant 601 Kombi and a few years later, a Wartburg 353. At that time, he was too young to know how they worked and way too young to drive them, but he could see one thing – each of them had a different ethos and their own unique personality. As time went on, he started seeing that in other cars as well, and his love for the automobile was born.  Read full bio
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