The newest addition to the family.
McLaren has had quite a busy and productive 2015. In four months, the British automaker has unveiled four new models, the latest of which is the McLaren 540C Coupe. The second model in the new Sports Series brings classic McLaren performance DNA to an everyday driving, more affordable price point.
The newest McLaren made its debut at the Shanghai Motor Show on April 20th and will be on display until the 29th as the most attainable model in the automaker’s lineup. Although it currently sits at the bottom of the totem pole in the McLaren family, the 540C Coupe is still an incredibly dynamic and advanced supercar that isn’t afraid to throw some haymakers.
The same advanced carbon fiber MonoCell II chassis that makes up the 570S forms the starting point for the McLaren 540C Coupe. Everyday usability is a key feature here, where entry and exit is no longer a chore thanks to the MonoCell II’s design. Weight is also kept to a minimum with the dry weight as low as 2,890 lbs. – almost a full 330 lbs. lighter than its competition. That means more fun is on tap.
Positioned behind the cabin is the tried-and-true 3.8-liter, twin-turbocharged V-8 engine that powers the rest of the lineup. In the McLaren 540C Coupe, the boosted, mid-mounted engine churns out 533 horsepower at 7,500 RPM and 398 lb-ft. of torque from 3,500 to 6,500 RPM. All that is sent through the seven-speed SSG gearbox to the rear wheels, erupting in a 0-62 mph acceleration time of 3.5 seconds while 124 mph takes just 10.5 ticks of the clock. Top speed also comes in at an impressive 199 mph.
Visually, the McLaren 540C Coupe is very similar to its 570S Coupe sibling however, the aerodynamics are not as dynamic. The front fascia with its LED daytime running lamps and uniquely-shaped headlights stare ahead while aero blades beneath the bumper redirect air over the front hood for better efficiency. The same dihedral doors with floating character line redirects air into the fender-mounted air intakes that cool the engine. The same flying buttress design is also present and redirects air above the engine compartment, thus generating downforce as hot air escapes. An integrated spoiler and less aggressive diffuser setup with integrated exhaust outlets keep the McLaren 540C Coupe composed at higher speeds.
Beneath the aerodynamic bodywork is a suspension that offers incredible dynamics while keeping a focus on everyday driving – more so than the rest of the McLaren lineup. Front and rear anti-roll bars, a set of Formula 1-style dual wishbones, and independently-adaptive dampers give the McLaren 540C Coupe a composed but comfortable ride quality that can be set to ‘Normal’, ‘Sport’, and ‘Track’ settings. An advanced Formula 1 Brake Steer system applies braking force to the inside rear wheel during a turn to further improve handling. Making contact with the pavement are 19-inch front and 20-inch rear cast wheels wearing Pirelli P Zero tires developed specifically for the McLaren Sport Series cars.
The interior of the McLaren 540C Coupe is also similar to that of the 570S Coupe thanks to the platform upon which it is based. A full leather upholstery including the seats makes for a more comfortable daily driver while organic curves create a more welcoming atmosphere to experience. A floating center console integrates a seven-inch IRIS touchscreen that controls the entire infotainment system including climate controls.
The new McLaren 540C Coupe will carry a price tag of £126,000 in the UK while US pricing will start at $165,000, making it the most attainable model from the brand, yet. The new models are also currently available for order in more than 30 countries around the globe.
McLaren 540C Coupe Specifications
Engine Configuration: V8 Twin Turbo / 3799cc
Horsepower: 540PS (533 bhp) at 7,500 RPM
Torque: 540Nm (398 lb ft.) at 3,500-6,500 RPM
Transmission: 7 Speed SSG
CO2: 258 g/km
Economy: 25.5 mpg (EU combined)
Engine Lubricant: Mobil 1 New Life™ 0W-40
Acceleration 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph): 3.5 seconds
Acceleration 0-200 km/h (0-124 mph): 10.5 seconds
Top Speed: 320 km/h (199 mph)
Power-to-Weight: 412PS per tonne
Dimensions and Weight:
Dry Weight: 1,311 kg (2,890lbs) with lightweight options
Weight Distribution: (f / r) 42 / 58
McLaren 540C Coupe Gallery