TopGear.com07 May 2014

Get ready for the track-only P1

There’s a racing version of the 875bhp hyper-hybrid on the way, McLaren insiders tell TopGear.com

Get ready for McLaren’s track-only P1

McLaren is readying a yet-more-hardcore, track-only version of its P1 hypercar, company insiders have confirmed to TopGear.com.

Last week we brought you news that Ferrari is prepping a racing version of its LaFerrari - perhaps powered by an F1-inspired V6 turbo - but now McLaren looks set to muscle its way into the hypercar pit box.

"We've written to all 375 P1 owners [...] to express their interest in a track-only P1, after some asked us for one," said our McLaren source. "It will be produced in low double-digits [...] only when the run of 375 road cars is complete."

So how will the track-spec P1 differ from the road car? "More power, torque, more body too," our source told us. So that's more power than the frankly tardy 903bhp generated by the road-going P1's twin-turbo 3.8-litre V8 and electric gubbinry, then. Right.

Match that to the obligatory slick tyres and even more devices of downforce, and the track-going P1 has to the potential to show a clean set of exhausts to some pretty serious formula racers. Not, as Jeremy discovered, that the ‘standard' P1 is exactly tardy around a track.

We're also informed the P1 racer will retain the road car's ‘IPAS', which allows the driver to detonate the hybrid's full whack of electric power in a single ‘push to pass' burst.

Unlike the LaFerrari XX, McLaren is unlikely to consider an F1-derived engine for the P1. Not least because, on the current form of Woking's F1 outfit, that might actually represent a step backwards in terms of performance.

Like Pagani's Zonda R, the track-spec P1 is unlikely to fit within the regulations of any existing race series. So where can you drive it? "There'll be a series of McLaren organised track events and driver training," said our man at McLaren. With a potential output somewhere very close to 1000bhp heading through the P1's rear wheels, that driver training may prove very necessary.

Like the idea of a P1 track-car in your garage? Well, unless you've already got a road-going P1 parked in there, you're out of luck. We're told it'll only be offered to existing P1 owners.

So tell us: how would you turn the P1 into a racer? And just how fast do you reckon it'd get around the TG track? Faster than Schumi's FXX?

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