British supercar maker McLaren will be going beyond its P1 plug-in hybrid in green offerings.
As part of its business plan through 2022, more than half its cars will be hybrids, said CEO Mike Flewitt. The British brand known for demonstrating on the Formula One circuit, is now developing a “completely new powertrain architecture,” which is “specifically designed for a hybridized application,” Flewitt said.
McLaren sold 1,654 vehicles worldwide last year, and it is looking to grow that to as much as 5,000 in the near future, he said. It’s a very select audience, with the McLaren lineup being quite pricey. The P1 plug-in hybrid sells for more than $1 million.
McLaren’s plan coincides with that of other high-end luxury performance carmakers facing global emissions regulations and upscale car buyers interested in the new technologies. One of these is another British carmaker, Bentley, which will be rolling out a plug-in version of its new Bentayga SUV to market sometime in late 2017 or early 2018. Aston Martin now has a joint venture with Chinese EV start-up LeEco.
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The key driver for green technologies is to meet emissions targets, Hewitt said. “The only real solution is a hybrid powertrain,” he said.” What’s very important is that it won’t just be a hybrid variant, it will be fully integrated. It needs to add to the experience.”
Adding to the experience will come to play when competing against high-performance carmakers like Bentley and Aston Martin, with tire-spinning torque being one of them.
“We need to invest a lot of money to be able to produce cars that are competitive against some pretty high-powered competition,” Flewitt said.