The most powerful, aerodynamic Super Series to date!

The McLaren Super Series debuted in 2014, when the British manufacturer unveiled the 650S at the Geneva Motor Show. Developed to replace the 12C, the 650S was the first vehicle from McLaren’s new family of sports cars, which went on to include the milder, China-only 625C, the 650S Spider, a GT3-spec race car, and several special editions. In 2015, McLaren introduced the 675LT, a more powerful version of the 650S with a longer, modified body that paid homage to the McLaren F1 "Long Tail."

Come 2016, and the British firm is set to launch yet another version of the Super Series. Named the 688HS (reportedly for High Sport), it’s the most hardcore iteration of the 650S, and even though it has yet to be confirmed, it’s been rumored for quite a few months. Previously shown in digital renderings, the 688HS has just been unveiled in the metal by the folks from the McLaren Life forums, who got their hands on a photo of the car taken inside the McLaren factory.

The image confirms that the 688HS is the most aggressive Super Series model created so far and that McLaren still has a few tricks up its sleeve now that the P1 supercar is out of production. There’s no word as to when this new sports car will make its global debut, but given that the vehicle appears to be complete, the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance or the Paris Motor Show seem like a smart bet. Until then, let’s have a closer look at what we already know about the 688HS. And don’t forget to come back for updates over the next few weeks.

Continue reading to learn more about the McLaren 688HS.

  • 2017 McLaren MSO HS
  • Year:
    2017
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    V8
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    678 (Est.)
  • Displacement:
    3.8 L
  • 0-60 time:
    2.8 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    203 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    500000 (Est.)
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • Purpose:
  • body style:

Exterior

Although the leaked picture shows only the front of the car, it confirms that the renderings that surfaced the Web a few months ago were accurate. All told, the 688HS is not extreme just under the hood, but on the outside as well, with its race-inspired features making the bonkers 675LT seem mundane.

All told, the 688HS is not extreme just under the hood, but on the outside as well

Although the new sports car retains all the trademark cues seen on the 650S, the front fascia received a larger splitter and a pair of canards on each side of the bumper. The latter are also backed by a vertical fin, which helps channel the air toward the rear of the vehicle. Although the trunk lid remained standard, the front fenders received additional vents atop the wheels, a feature borrowed from the race-spec 650S GT3.

The side panels and side skirts appear to be identical to the 675LT’s, but things change dramatically around back, where the 688HS sports a new diffuser, added side vents, and a massive wing among other nips and tucks. The engine hood is also inspired from the world of motorsport, while a new roof scoop feeds more air into the engine.

Interior

2017 McLaren MSO HS
- image 691306

The interior of the 688HS is still a mystery with no photos to run by, but it’s safe to assume that it will be based on the 675LT. Look for the same simple dashboard with wraparound design that extends into the door panel armrests, the motorsport-inspired center console with few buttons and knobs, and the instrument cluster with the large rev counter in the middle. The steering wheel should also be similar and sport a flat bottom, carbon-fiber spokes, and Alcantara for enhanced grip. The race-spec, bolstered seats made from carbon-fiber should round off the car’s track-ready cabin.

Also expect features such as the air conditioning to be removed as standard for additional weight savings. However, McLaren might allow customers to have it a no extra cost, just like the 675LT. The "688HS" logo should be present on the headrests and in the tachometer, while McLaren should offer numerous customization features that include various upholstery colors and contrast stitching.

Drivetrain

2017 McLaren MSO HS
- image 691304

There is no doubt that the 688HS will be motivated by McLaren’s award-winning, twin-turbo, 3.8-liter, V-8, but output will be higher than any other Super Series vehicle to date. As the name suggests, the V-8 will deliver 688 PS, which converts to 678 horsepower. That’s 13 PS or 12 horsepower more than the 675LT. Torque is not yet available, but it should increase from the 675LT’s 515 pound-feet to at least 520 pound-feet.

Expect 0-to-60 mph to drop from 2.9 to 2.8 seconds and 0-to-124 mph to come in 7.7 instead of 7.9 ticks.

Given the extra power and downforce that comes with the beefed-up aero kit, the 688HS should be quicker than the 675LT. Expect 0-to-60 mph to drop from 2.9 to 2.8 seconds and 0-to-124 mph to come in 7.7 instead of 7.9 ticks. Top speed, on the other hand, is likely to decrease due to the increased downforce. While the 675LT tops out at 205, the 688HS will probably reach its limit at around 203 mph.

Power will probably hit the ground through the same seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox, but other drivetrain components will be either new or updated. This should include turbochargers, cylinder heads, exhaust manifolds, camshafts, connecting rods, and even an upgraded fuel system.

Prices

There’s no information about pricing and availability, but it’s safe to assume that the 688HS will become the most expensive Super Series to date. With the 675LT priced from $349,500, the 688HS will most likely fetch close to $500,000. Production should also be very limited, likely to no more than 200 units.

Competition

Porsche 911 GT3 RS

2016 Porsche 911 GT3 RS High Resolution Exterior
- image 620005

When it comes to hardcore Porsche performance, the 911 GT3 RS is the sports car to add to your garage. With new louvers, a larger splitter, bigger intakes, and an enormous fixed wing, the RS is a significant improvement over the already fantastic 911 GT3. Inside are carbon-fiber buckets similar to those in the 918 Spyder and customers can also opt for the Club Sport Package for a bolt-in roll cage, six-point harnesses, and a fire extinguisher. The GT3 RS gets its juice from a non-turbo, 4.0-liter, flat-six rated at 500 horsepower and 339 pound-feet of torque. Sprinting from 0 to 60 mph takes only 3.3 seconds. Pricing starts at just $175,900, making it significantly cheaper than the McLaren, but the options list is long and comes with expensive items.

Learn more about the Porsche 911 GT3 RS here.

Ferrari 488 GTB Scuderia

2018 Ferrari 488 Pista Exterior Exclusive Renderings Computer Renderings and Photoshop
- image 636192

Although not yet in dealerships, the 488 GTB Scuderia will arrive just in time for the 688HS. Developed to replace the awesome 458 Speciale, the Scuderia will use the GTB’s brand-new, twin-turbo, 3.9-liter V-8, but will benefit from more than the standard 660 horsepower and 600 pound-feet of twist. Word has it that output will increase to around 700 horses, which should translate to a 0-to-60 time of around 2.8 seconds and a top speed pushing 210 mph. The 488 Scuderia could also be the first mid-engine Ferrari to get a rear-wheel steering system. Expect pricing to start from around $320,000.

Find out more about the Ferrari 488 GTB Scuderia here.

Conclusion

2017 McLaren MSO HS
- image 691305

Just when you thought that McLaren was done with the Super Series after the 675LT, bam, the Brits are rolling out a more powerful, more aerodynamic version of the sports car. Not only does it go to show that McLaren has plenty of resources to play with, but it also speaks volumes of its ambition to create as many bespoke supercars as possible. Needless to say, McLaren wasn’t kidding about its plans to expand and it appears that Ferrari and Porsche have plenty of reasons to worry about. With the P1 now out of production, the 688HS will become McLaren’s quickest and most powerful weapon. I can’t help but wonder what’s next...

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    • * Likely very limited and rare
    • * Very expensive relative to competition

Source: McLarenLife

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