McLaren has revealed the first details of the new McLaren 650S GT3, which will compete in international GT3 championships beginning in 2015.
The British manufacturer took the wraps of its second-generation GT3 racer at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, which will succeed the McLaren MP4-12C GT3 after three seasons.
The car is based on the new McLaren 650S and is built around the same carbon fibre chassis and features an “aggressive and menacing” front. Lightweight carbon fiber and composite body panels will result in better cooling, enhanced aerodynamics and have reduced in weight reduction of those parts.
McLaren GT has confirmed testing of the new 650S GT3 will continue this summer with production of customer cars set to commence in the autumn of this year. The new car will be priced at $562,000 plus tax.
The introduction of the new 650S GT3 does not mean the end of the road for the MP4-12C GT3 as McLaren GT has confirmed the existing GT3 cars will also be able to benefit from updates and enhancements offered by the 650S GT3, due to the use of the shared chassis structure and engine.
McLaren GT expects that around 15 cars will be produced and delivered in time for the start of the 2015 season, 20 years after McLaren last won at Le Mans.
“The 650S GT3 is a natural progression of an already successful racer, but we have looked at all the different areas where we could possibly make even the slightest incremental improvement,” said Andrew Kirkaldy, Managing Director, of McLaren GT.
“The revised aerodynamic profile looks much more purposeful, and we have managed to incorporate increased levels of cooling without any detriment to performance.
“A big step forward has also been made in terms of servicing the car, which can be the difference between a race win and finishing off the podium, and the cost of running a car at a competitive level, and this becomes more important the longer and more demanding the event.”
“By simplifying maintenance and repair processes, and cutting down the time and costs involved, the 650S GT3 will be even more competitive at the longer endurance events with time required in the pitlane reduced to a minimum,” Kirkaldy added
“The 12C GT3 was the first iteration of a GT car from McLaren, and was, and still is competing and winning on a regular basis,” Chris Goodwin, Chief Test Driver at McLaren Automotive said.
“The 650S GT3 is now our second generation model, and it is up against more established rivals, many of which are on to the third, or in some cases, fourth. Just as we face in the road car market. Despite this, McLaren is still the brand to beat.”