After we all acclaimed the recent launch of the McLaren Senna supercar, the Woking-based manufacturer readies another supercar: the McLaren 600LT.

The quickest, most powerful and most track-focused – yet road legal – Sports Series McLaren will make its dynamic world debut July 12 at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed. The arrival of the new 600LT, which is built to excel on roads and race circuits alike, marks the beginning of the next chapter in the McLaren ‘Longtail’ (LT) story.

With the engine management system of the 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V8 recalibrated and less back pressure from a top-exit exhaust system that is even shorter and more extreme than that of the McLaren Senna allowing the engine to breathe more freely, the 600LT can call on peak power of 592bhp at 7,500rpm and a maximum torque output of 457lb ft at 5,500-6,500 rpm. 

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These outputs deliver great levels of performance: 0-62mph takes just 2.9 seconds, matching the acceleration of the revered McLaren 675LT Super Series model (0-60mph in just 2.8 seconds). 0-124mph is achieved in a remarkable 8.2 seconds and the 600LT can continue gathering speed to a top speed of 204mph.

Inspired by the renowned McLaren 675LT models and their iconic ‘Longtail’ McLaren F1 GTR racing predecessor, the new addition to the LT family has all the physical hallmarks of a true McLaren ‘Longtail’, including an extended front splitter, lengthened rear diffuser, fixed rear wing and elongated silhouette – in this case by 2.9in compared to a McLaren 570S Coupé. 

The bodywork optimises aerodynamic performance, working in conjunction with the flat carbon fibre floor of the 600LT to produce the 220.5lbs of downforce at 155mph that generates more grip and greater high-speed stability and is a significant contributor to the car’s excellence on a track.

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Extensive use of carbon fibre – including for the monocoque chassis that is some 25 percent stiffer than a comparable aluminium chassis and for the new aerodynamic features– together with lightweight materials throughout the track-focused cockpit, helps the McLaren 600LT to achieve a lightest dry weight of 2,749lbs and equivalent power-to-weight ratio of 474bhp/ton. With the optional Super-Lightweight Carbon Fibre Racing Seats developed for the McLaren Senna fitted, the 600LT weighs 220.5lbs less than a 570S Coupe.

The adoption of the braking system from the McLaren Super Series, which features lightweight aluminium calipers and stiffer carbon ceramic discs, reduces weight by 8.8lbs, working in conjunction with an all-new brake booster developed using learnings from the McLaren Senna, the result is responsive and progressive pedal feel during braking and a 124mph to standstill distance of 383.9ft – just 3.3ft more than a McLaren P1.

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Production of the 600LT Coupé will begin in October 2018 and last for around 12 months, with build slots scheduled around existing Sports and Super Series models, as well as the sold-out Senna, Senna GTR and BP23.  Availability will be strictly limited, the specialist carbon fibre body panels that require specialist tooling just one of the reasons that the new ‘Longtail’ will be rarer than its Sports Series brethren.  Available to order from McLaren retailers, the 600LT Coupé is priced from $240,000 (US), which includes a Pure McLaren Road Owner Track Day at a race circuit, with expert driving tuition.