The McLaren Artura GT4 racer is a lightweight | Top Gear
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The McLaren Artura GT4 racer is a lightweight

At more than 100kg lighter than the outgoing 570S GT4, the race-spec Artura promises more of everything

Published: 21 Jun 2022

Fresh from discovering that the new, hybrid McLaren Artura is rather good to drive, we’ve been given our first glimpse of the GT4 version that will make its debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this week.

Wears the racing livery well, doesn’t it? Powered by the same twin-turbo V6 petrol engine as the road car, the Artura GT4 isn’t a hybrid. Nope, GT4 rules mean hybrid assistance isn’t allowed. But that’s ok, says McLaren, because the V6 generates ‘more than enough’ output for the Balance-of-Performance-regulated category anyway. Fair enough, then.

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In fact, McLaren boasts that the engine’s compact and lighter construction than the V8 in the outgoing 570S GT4 means it’s more fuel efficient and boasts a better throttle response, as well as being better for weight distribution.

All told the Artura GT4 is more than 100kg lighter than the car it’s replacing, and has a 130kg head start on the car it’s based on thanks to the absence of that hybrid system.

In its place, McLaren has slotted in the fuel cell and ancillary drive system for a lower centre of gravity, which must already be hugging the asphalt on account of its carbon fibre monocoque.

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A seven-speed transmission replaces the road car’s eight-speed (and there’s an actual reverse gear, ‘cos it can’t rely on an EV motor), with shorter ratios and a mechanical limited slip diff contributing to improved performance.

Meanwhile a Bosch system controls the electronics, and the Artura produces more downforce than the car it’s been so heavily benchmarked against, especially at the front end which hosts a bespoke splitter, dive planes and bonnet duct. That rear wing has seven angle settings, too.

The driver’s seat is fixed in position, but a sliding pedal box and adjustable steering wheel will help you find the perfect setup. Elsewhere, wider wheels mean more grip and less deg, reckons McLaren, with damping and brake cooling efficiency also improved.

“The Artura GT4 is the second race car to be built from the ground-up by McLaren Automotive’s Motorsport division,” says Ian Morgan, McLaren’s director of motorsport. “Based on the revolutionary new McLaren Artura, it represents a significant step up from the outgoing 570S GT4, itself a hugely successful competition car which has achieved many race and championship wins with our customer racing teams.

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“With lighter weight, extremely precise handling characteristics and enhanced durability – as well as the packaging and efficiency advantages and all-round serviceability for mechanics of the new V6 powertrain – the Artura GT4 will set new class standards, as we are already seeing from our extensive test and development programme.”

Proper performance figures are yet to be made public, but buyers can register their interest now, apparently. Consider our hands very much raised.

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