Chris Goodwin Jumps Ship To Aston Martin After 20-Year Run at McLaren
Chris Goodwin, McLaren’s legendary chief test driver, is jumping ship to Aston Martin. The 50-year old British race car driver is expected to play a key role in the development of Aston Martin’s Valkyrie hypercar after spending the last 20 years helping turn McLaren into the thriving supercar company that it is today.
Pink Floyd’s Drummer Crashes His McLaren F1 GTR
This past weekend, the Goodwood Circuit hosted the 75th Members’ Meeting, which brought (as usual) an impressive lineup of classic and more recent race cars to the iconic British track. Unfortunately, this event also saw a highly collectible car leave the track and slam into an outside wall. I’m talking about a McLaren F1 GTR driven by none other than Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason.
A fan of historic racing and noted classic car collector, Mason took his F1 GTR for a spin on the Goodwood track and things obviously didn’t work that well. Although the video doesn’t provide clues as to how the GTR slammed into the wall, it’s safe to assume that Mason lost control of the powerful race car and went spinning into the green. It doesn’t appear as if he was driving at high speed, but the damage is pretty extensive, with the front bumper, left fender, and left headlamp needing to be replaced now.
This isn’t necessarily an issue since McLaren still provides parts and even takes care of repair process, but bringing the car back to its original state will be pretty expensive. Especially if the suspension and electronics suffered damage too. Okay, so maybe Mason won’t have trouble paying for the repairs, but it’s still painful to see a rare car like this — only 28 were built — take damage. On the other hand, it’s actually good to see that Mason’s F1 GTR gets some track action instead of spending its life in a garage.
Mason, who recently turned 73, is a big classic and race car enthusiast, most known for owning various Ferraris. His collection includes one of the 39 Ferrari GTOs, an Enzo, and a 512S race car, among others.
Back in early February 2015 it was revealed that Rowan Atkinson decided to part with his rare McLaren F1 for £8 million, or about $12.3 million. Four months later and the supercar has found a new home. The F1 was sold to an unnamed British buyer through specialist car dealer Taylor & Crawler. The agency led by former McLaren sales and marketing director David Clark would not reveal the price paid by the new owner, but it is unlikely to be too far short of the asking price given the F1 is regarded as the most collectable vehicle of the past three decades.
The current official record for a McLaren F1 sale stands at $10.5 million and it was set in 2014 by an example previously owned by former IndyCar champion Michael Andretti. Though the sum of this new transaction remains undisclosed, it’s very likely Atkinson’s former supercar is the most expensive F1 ever sold. Also, it would rank among the highest prices ever paid in the U.K. for an automobile.
The Mr. Bean star bought his F1 in 1997 for around £540,000 (about $830,700) and drove it for 41,000 miles.
Atkinson’s F1 is also famous for triggering Britain’s biggest ever insurance claim. In 2011, after crashing the car into a hedge, Atkinson’s insurance company was handed a £910,000 (around $1.4 million) repair bill.
I have a feeling the new owner will be a lot more careful with his $12-million ride.
Continue reading for the full story.
Rowan Atkinson is quite the interesting fellow. A mainly comedic actor who made his name playing characters like Black Adder and Mr. Bean, the genial man has spent much of his spare time and wealth indulging in his real passion of cars. While he has owned dozens of machines over the years from exotic names like Ferrari and Aston Martin, one of his most prized automotive possessions is his McLaren F1. It has been one of his main daily drivers over the years and he has amassed a relatively astronomical 40,000 miles on the clock.
During that time, it has seen countless motorway journeys, many school runs and even a few days at the track. It has also seen the wrong end of an insurance adjuster twice. The first time Atkinson merely wrinkled it a bit, but his second crash nearly tore the car completely in half. Now after 17 years of ownership, — the longest tenure of any car he has owned — Mr. Bean has decided it is time to sell his beloved supercar.
If you are unfamiliar with the F1, you must be on the wrong Website for starters, but allow me to freshen your memory. This was an ultralight, ultrafast carbon-fiber supercar created by McLaren and it redefined the automobile. Powered by a BMW-sourced, V-12 engine that produced 627 horsepower, the F1 was capable of reaching 240 mph, making it the fastest production car in the world. A title it held for more than a decade until the Bugatti Veyron arrived. The car had many technical quirks over others on the market like its three-person seating with the driver mounted center, and the passengers slightly rearward and to each side. It also had an engine bay lined with gold foil, because gold is the best conductor of heat.
Sadly, Rowan Atkinson has finally decided it is time to part with his machine, so in just a few weeks’ time, this incredible supercar — one of only 107 ever built — will have a new owner. That said, if you were hoping the high mileage and multiple collisions would make this thing a bargain, you better think again. As it stands, the car is being offered for no less than $12 million.
Click past the jump to read more about the Rowan Atkinson’s McLaren F1.
Horacio Pagani has the kind of problem we can only dream of having. The founder of Pagani was recently spotted out and about in a McLaren P1 MSO, an incredibly exclusive supercar that I can’t possibly purchase unless I win the lottery. It must be tough having to make a choice between driving a P1 and his very own Huayra.
But such is the life of a man who is embedded deep in the industry’s supercar circle. We’re not going to make an issue out of that. Besides, he probably has a reason for doing so, not the least of which could be to test out the P1 and use it to help better his own lineup. That’s happened before in the business and it will likely happen again.
Who knows what his real intentions are. What we do know is that Horacio Pagani is an awesome man with an impeccable taste in supercars. The P1 MSO he’s driving also looks incredible, especially the exterior panels decked out in chrome to go with the orange trim on the hood and the red leather interior.
Click past the jump to read more about the McLaren P1.
Rowan Atkinson’s name is tied to yet another car crash with a McLaren F1. This time, though, he wasn’t the one who crashed the supercar, but was actually one of the first to help the guy who did. Atkinson was driving his F1 in a convoy of fellow F1 owners driving along Tuscany when a man identified as a rich American businessman lost control of his F1 and crashed it into a tree before flipping over.
Knowing a thing or two about crashing the F1, Mr. Bean sprung into action, helping out the injured driver as medical personnel headed to the scene. Bystanders spotted the British actor picking up pieces of wreckage from the McLaren, all while presumably having flashbacks to his own crash three years ago.
Fortunately, the driver didn’t sustain any serious injuries and is reportedly in good condition after being airlifted to a hospital in Pisa. The same, though, can’t be said for the F1, which looks like a mangled heap that’ll probably give insurance companies nightmares for a long time. Hopefully the rig survives to live another day, as McLaren built only 64 road-ready F1 units.
For the record, this F1 is chassis No. 72. This particular red-and-white paint scheme is actually part of a pair of bespoke McLarens, as there is a matching McLaren 12C out there too. McLaren dubbed this matching pair "Project 8."
Click past the jump to read more about McLaren F1
With only 64 standard street versions built, the McLaren F1 is one of the rarest supercars around. And since the company stopped building them about 16 years ago, those looking to add an F1 to their garage need to search for months, if not years, to find one for sale and spend millions of dollars to take it home.
One of these jewels changed owners for no less than $5.5 million a couple of years ago, a record for the astounding F1. However, a more recent sale saw one of these supercars fetch nearly double the amount, with a British F1 nut paying £6.2 million or $10.5 million at current exchange rates.
The amount is more than staggering, but there are a couple of reasons for why the anonymous Brit paid the price of nearly ten P1s to get a 20-year-old car. First of all, the model depicted in the photo above is one of the only two F1s finished in red. Secondly, this example, bearing chassis No. 28, was initially delivered to Michael Andretti, former IndyCar champion, owner of Andretti Autosport and son of renowned Formula One and Le Mans ace Mario Andretti.
The former racing driver reportedly owned the F1 for about two years before selling it to a Japanese collector. The vehicle eventually returned to the U.S. and spent ten years in California prior to being sold to its new British owner. According to Western Morning News, the firm commissioned to find an F1 for the British enthusiast spent no less than six months trying to source one.
Click past the jump to read more about the McLaren F1.
Even after years of being around, the McLaren F1 still deserves the respect of being one of the first modern-day supercars to grace us with its presence.
Everything about the F1 inspires conversation, but this time around, we leave noted auto enthusiast Jay Leno to give us the lowdown on one of the F1’s most important features: its engine.
Professor Leno has his own F1 and it needed a new fuel pump, which made it pretty easy to access its 6.0-liter V-12 engine because, believe it or not, you have to yank out this powerplant to access the pump. In so doing, Leno gives us the lowdown on what makes this particular engine well suited to satisfy the rage of the McLaren supercar and allow it produce all of its 618 horsepower.
Considering that the F1 first made headway 20 years ago, you can make a definite case that the 618 horsepower it produces without any turbochargers is still a benchmark few other vehicles can be proud to say they’ve met these days.
That’s saying a lot, adding only to the mystique of the F1 and its capabilities as a track-capable supercar capable of hitting 62 mph in just over 3 seconds, while hitting a top speed of just a shade under 250 mph - back in 1998.
And to Jay Leno’s credit, his willingness to show us the inner guts of the McLaren F1’s engine is something that’s well appreciated.
Click past the jump to read about the McLaren F1
There are a handful of cars that cost over $1 million. However, for repairs for a car to hit seven figures, well, that’s unheard of…
Not anymore, apparently.
Rowan Atkinson’s McLaren F1, which was destroyed during an accident that occurred back in August 2011, is now up and running again. Now, repairing a totally mangled supercar of the stature of the McLaren F1 takes a pretty long time, as McLaren engineers will attest after spending more than a year restoring the car to run again. With that much time spent on just putting the car back together, costs for the repair eventually ran up to the tune of £910,000 ($1.44 million).
That figure is even more remarkable considering that it’s three times as expensive as any other repair claim that has been documented in the UK. Just a hunch: Mr. Atkinson’s insurance company will no doubt raise his insurance rates after this deal – whether they paid for it or not.
Granted, it’s a McLaren F1. But still, $1 million for repairing a car is just absurd.
Note: Photo above is not Rowan Atkinson’s restored McLaren F1
Jay Leno is known for his incredible car collection and his latest addition includes a $230,000 McLaren MP4-12C which he chose to unveil at the Supercar Sunday show, held at Westfield Promenade Mall 6100 Topanga Canyon Boulevard Woodland Hills. Luckily, and not surprisingly, someone was on hand to videotape the unveiling.
Leno took all precautions necessary in the development of his MP4-12C, even heading over to the McLaren Test Center in Britain a few months ago to pay a visit. He also had the chance to test the car before actually buying it. So, apparently there are a few advantages to being a huge car collector and late night talk show host.
Leno’s McLaren is painted in a very cool orange and is powered by a 3.8-liter twin-turbo V8 weighing only 439 lbs. The engine produces 592hp at 7,000rpm and 443 lb-ft. of torque between 3,000 and 7,000rpm. It can hit a top speed of 205 mph.
Gordon Murray is an iconic designer in the auto industry because of his previous work with the equally legendary McLaren F1. As a man that has long built a reputation as one of the best designers in the industry, Murray’s latest project involves the design of a car that’s arguably more famous than even the McLaren F1: the Batmobile.
Featuring aerodynamics that were inspired by Formula One, the two-seater Batmobile was designed and built for a different purpose than what we’d hope. No, we’re not going to see this car patrol our cities from criminals, nor are we going to see it on the silver screen anytime soon. Instead, this particular Batmobile will grace the stage in the Broadway musical, BATMAN Live.
In addition to the F1-sourced aerodynamic built, this Batmobile also comes with an eco-friendly hydrogen fuel cell powertrain and, in true Caped Crusader fashion, it also has plenty of gadgets and gizmos that would make Adam West proud. Murray made all the sketches and design details of the car, but was not responsible for the actual build of the Batmobile. That task was left to a London-based independent fabrication shop.
While we were surprised to find out Gordon Murray’s involvement in such a project, we’d be the last people to ever question the master’s work, especially if it involves the Dark Knight’s ride.
UPDATE 07/25/11: We don’t know if this is a foreboding of things to come, but Gordon Murray’s assault-on-the-senses, eco-friendly Batmobile crashed before the opening of the Batman Live World Arena Tour in the UK last week. No word on how the whole accident happened, but it’s definitely not the kind of start the organizers of the five-year traveling event wanted to have. Fortunately, a replacement car was immediately flown in and arrived just before the event kicks off tomorrow.
Check out the Batmobile’s official unveiling in London after the jump.
The man with the bluest jeans is at it again. Seriously, Jay, get some new clothes and let us take our turn in your fabulous rides!. Anyway, Jay Leno made his way to the Pebble Beach Concours last weekend and, not surprisingly, was able to get behind the wheel of the new McLaren MP4-12C sports car. He didn’t actually get to drive the car, but he was still able to provide a few more details on it. And, apparently, he thinks highly of the beautiful car.
The MP4-12C made its debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed just last month where it attacked the Supercar Run with its twin-turbo 3.8-liter V8 engine producing around 600 horsepower and 433 lb-ft of torque. The engine is coupled to a McLaren seven speed Seamless Shift dual clutch gearbox (SSG). It sprints from 0 to 60 mph in less than 3.5 seconds and can hit a top speed of more than 200mph. The car goes from 0 to 124mph in under 10 sec and then back to 0 in under 5 sec. The quarter mile is made in around 11 sec.
The many perks of being Jay Leno makes for a very long list, and for us pistonheads of lesser stature, we probably would kill just to spend one day in that man’s shoes. The connections and access that Jay Leno has in the auto industry is something a lot of us can only dream about.
Recently, America’s number one car freak was given a walking tour of McLaren’s factory in Woking, England where he was shown a number of things we only see in our imaginations. For starters, McLaren Managing Director Anthony Sheriff takes Leno inside the company’s inner grounds to show him the carbon fiber central tub that is being used in the company’s new supercar, the MP4-12C. After that, Leno was taken inside a small room where he was shown a three-dimensional CAD rendering of the supercar and then was given a first-hand look at the McLaren P11. Leno even was given a chance to get behind the wheel of the car to examine its interior.
While the company didn’t show the MP4-12C in all its glory, the mere fact that he was given a private tour of the facility – including a number of restricted areas that only McLaren employees are allowed to go to – makes us all want to cry in envy.