With the more affordable 570S, McLaren clearly has the Porsche 911 and Audi A8 squarely in its sights.
By Ghaith Madadha
The McLaren 570S is the first in the British super car maker’s more practical and most useable entry-level Sports Series line. It shares the same lightweight frame, platform and drive-line as Super Series’ 650S. A Little lighter, marginally longer, and more affordable, the 570S represents the car maker’s more back-to-basics approach. It ditches the 650S’ costly and complex hydraulic suspension and active aerodynamics in favor of better steering feel, interior access, ergonomics, visibility, and luggage volume.
The 570S is lightest in its class by around 150kg, and with 0-100km/h acceleration down just 0.2seconds, it is something of a junior supercar bargain. The 2016 Middle East Car of the Year awards’ Best Premium Performance Coupe and overall runner-up, the 570S is expected to help boost McLaren production from 2015’s record 1,600 units to between 4,000 and 4500.
The 570S looks urgent and predatorywith low-slung bonnet, sharp air-splitter, and rising waistline trailing to muscular haunches. Sci-fi like headlights reflect the brand’s emblem and bear resemblance to stable-mates, while rear lights resemble the P1 Ultimate Series hyper car. Without its stable-mate’s active aerodynamics, the 570S uses fixed airflow solutions, including shrink-wrap design, side intakes, front aero blades, integrated spoiler and rear diffuser to manage high speed downforce, stability and aerodynamics, and facilitate engine cooling and heat extraction.
Prodigiously powerful despite being detuned to 568 BHP at a heady 7,400 rpm, the staple twin-turbocharged 3.8-liter V8 engine eagerly revs to an 8,500-rpm redline. The 570S launches vigorously from standstill, sprinting through 0-100 km/h in 3.2 seconds, 0-220 km/h in 9.5seconds, and 0-400 meters in 10.9 seconds at 220km/h. The 570S is stratospherically high-revving for a turbocharged car, and is eager and long-legged, with responsively accurate throttle control.
A443 lb/ft torque plateau at 5,000-6,500 rpm provides muscular mid-range flexibility that coalesces to manic urgency and crisp harmonics as revs reach towards peak power. A familiar 7-speed automated dual-clutch gearbox features three escalating automatic response setting and manual mode through fixed steering column-mounted paddle shifters.
Like all McLarens, the 570S is built on a stiff lightweight carbon-fiber passenger cell mid-engine rear-drive platform with double wishbone suspension. However, conventional adaptive dampers and mechanical anti-roll bars replace McLaren’s sophisticatedly innovative hydraulic system. If ultimate ride fluency is affected, there was little evidence over imperfect, narrow, fast, and winding British B-roads, where lumps, bumps, and cracks were dispatched with supple grace. Best in suspension ‘comfort’ mode on public roads, body control becomes tauter, handling sharper, and ride firmer in ‘sport’ and ‘track’ modes.
Longer and wider with repositioned pillars, un-obstructive floating console and revised design, the 570S’ ergonomics, materials, build, and cabin and storage space are improved on the 650S. Wider butterfly-opening doors and lower and slimmer sills also improve cabin access, especially larger occupants, while highly adjustable optional electric seats are supportive and comfortable. One positions the 570S precisely and confidently through corners with focused and alert driving position, logical controls and instrumentation, big windscreen, airy cabin, great visibility and wing scallops peaking over wheel centers.
Engine: 3.8-liter, mid-mounted, dry sump, twin turbo V8-cylinders
Gearbox: 7-speed automated dual clutch, RWD
Power, BHP (PS) [kW]: 562 (570)  @7400rpm
Torque, lb/ft (Nm): 443 (600) @5000-6500rpm
Top speed: 328km/h
Construction: Carbon fiber monocell, aluminum frames
Width: 2095 mm
Dry weight (distribution): 1313kg (42:58%)
Suspension: Double wishbones, adaptive dampers, anti-roll bars
Brakes, F/R: Carbon ceramic discs, 394/380mm
Tires, F/R: 225/35R19 / 285/35R20