The McLaren Elva Actually Looks Good With Its Tiny Little Windscreen - story fullscreen Fullscreen

The McLaren Elva Actually Looks Good With Its Tiny Little Windscreen

The McLaren Elva can be had with a proper windscreen

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Speedsters seem to be all the business nowadays, as multiple manufacturers have come up with one. McLaren is one of them and, in 2019, it gave us the McLaren Elva. Just like some of the other car manufacturers that have delved into topless supercars, the people at McLaren have given the Elva many design cues from the 1960s original. One of Elva’s distinctive features is the lack of a windshield – some speedsters have a small one. However, that’s about to change.

The McLaren Elva Actually Looks Good With Its Tiny Little Windscreen Interior
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And Chassis rigidity will even remain the same

The McLaren Elva was introduced in 2019 and had a price tag of $1.9 million. It was inspired by a series of race cars built by Bruce McLaren. The plan was to build 399 of the topless Elva, but only 249 of them ended up being made, due to the lack of interest. The Elva features an Active Air Management System (AARS), which forms an air bubble, effectively playing the role of a windshield, without there being one.

McLaren really wants the Elva to be a successful homage to the 1960s race cars, which is probably why they fitted a proper windshield on it. The remaining 150 cars that were never made, might actually make it, with a windshield, although production may go beyond the 399 cars, given sufficient interest.

The McLaren Elva Actually Looks Good With Its Tiny Little Windscreen Interior
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Now you can order the McLaren Elva with a proper windscreen

The McLaren Elva is the lightest McLaren car ever made, tipping the scales at under 1,300 kg (2,866 pounds). The windshield will add only 20 kg (44 pounds), so it will still be very lightweight. The windshield is also expected to improve the aerodynamics of the car.

The engine will remain the same M840 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8, producing 803 horsepower, mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. The 0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) sprint happens in 2.8 seconds, while 124 mph (200 km/h) is reached in 6.8 seconds. The chassis stiffness will also remain identical to that of the screenless car.

2021 McLaren Elva specifications
Engine 4.0-Liter V-8
Horsepower 803 HP
Torque 590 LB-FT
0 to 62 mph 2.8 seconds
0 to 124 mph 6.8 seconds
Top Speed >200 mph
The McLaren Elva Actually Looks Good With Its Tiny Little Windscreen Exterior
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As a reminder the McLaren Elva’s 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8 produces 803 horsepower
0 to 62 mph (100 km/h) happens in 2.8 seconds, while 124 mph (200 km/h) is reached in 6.8 seconds

The first McLaren Elva with a windshield will reach its proud owner towards the end of this year, after undergoing a personalization procedure at McLaren Special Operations (MS0). A few lucky customers will be able to have the Elva in the iconic Gulf livery, as well.

Dim Angelov
Dim Angelov
Born in 1992, I come from a family of motoring enthusiasts. My passion for cars was awoken at the age of six, when I saw a Lamborghini Diablo SV in a magazine. After high school I earned a master’s degree in marketing and a Master of Arts in Media and Communications. Over the years, I’ve practiced and become skilled in precision driving and to date have test driven more than 250 cars across the globe. Over the years, I’ve picked up basic mechanical knowledge and have even taken part in the restoration of a 1964 Jaguar E-Type and an Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint. Lately, I’ve taken a fancy to automotive photography, and while modern cars are my primary passion, I also have a love for Asian Martial Arts, swimming, war history, craft beer, historical weapons, and car restoration. In time, I plan my own classic car restoration and hope to earn my racing certificate, after which I expect to establish my own racing team.  Read full bio
About the author

Luxury supercar manufacturer McLaren Automotive will shortly commence production of the windscreen version of its Elva roadster. Designed for customers who prefer to have a physical screen rather than the barrier of air provided by the Active Air Management System (AAMS), as well as to meet local legal requirements in some states in the USA, the windscreen variant – which will be among the rarest of McLarens – is revealed today in full for the first time, with images of the prototype car.

“Super-lightweight and extremely powerful, the Elva delivers the ultimate connection between a driver, the road and the elements. Created to celebrate the pure joy of driving, it’s one of the most distinctive – and exclusive – cars we have made. Roofless and without windows, whether you opt for the screenless model with its sophisticated AAMS technology that provides an invisible barrier of air, or the windscreen version with an additional level of enclosure, this is a roadster that rewards owners with the most exhilarating of open-air driving experiences, delivered as only a McLaren can.”
Mike Flewitt, Chief Executive Officer, McLaren Automotive

While having had its own engineering programme to optimise aerodynamic and dynamic performance, the windscreen Elva shares all of the ethos and performance of the original car: neither has a roof, side windows or rear screen, which when combined with a dry lightest weight of less than 1300kg* and a mid-mounted, 815PS, twin-turbocharged 4.0-litre V8 engine, delivers the ultimate in driver exhilaration.

The screenless Elva is McLaren Automotive’s lightest-ever road car and the target for the windscreen version is only 20kg* heavier, even with the inclusion of electronically synchronised rain-sensing wipers, washer jets and sun visors, as well of course as the heated glass windscreen within a carbon fibre surround. The Active Air Management System (AAMS) is deleted as it has no role to play in the windscreen car.

The acceleration of both versions is comparable with that of a McLaren Senna, the screenless model reaching 100km/h from standstill in 2.8 seconds* and covering 0 – 200km/h in 6.8 seconds*. Dynamic performance and vehicle stiffness also remain unchanged from the screenless car, as does the scintillating driving experience. The windscreen, which is a permanent fixture, affords greater protection from the elements but it does not in any way reduce the levels of excitement.

The Elva links McLaren’s heritage to its present and future with a name and style that recalls the McLaren-Elva race cars of the 1960’s. These were amongst the first sportscars designed and raced by Bruce McLaren and the company that he founded, and today’s Elva was created to evoke the spirit of driving enjoyment symbolised by these cars.

Created as an homage to Bruce McLaren’s legendary race cars, heritage liveries like that of the Satin Casa Blue windscreen model prototype pictured have captured the imagination of Elva owners. Demand for bespoke customisation of this kind by McLaren Special Operations (MSO) has produced a series of dramatic and unique cars that stand out even among one of the rarest of McLarens – no more than 149 examples of the Elva will be specified and built to customer order.

The first examples of the windscreen Elva will be delivered to customers towards the end of this year, following personalisation by McLaren Special Operations.

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Press release

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