New McLaren Artura Spider ushers in sharper performance and dynamics

Published Feb 27, 2024


Exactly three years ago McLaren ripped the covers off its first hybrid supercar, the Artura, and now there’s finally an open top version.

The new Spider model also ushers in a host of improvements to the drivetrain and chassis which will also benefit the Coupe model.

For these “model year 2025” cars the 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol engine and electric motor now produce a combined 515kW, an improvement of 15kW that’s concentrated in the 4,000rpm to 8,500rpm rev range.

Maximum torque remains at 720Nm although its delivery is said to be optimised by small improvements to the electronic mapping. McLaren says this engine calibration will be made available free of charge to existing Artura owners, depending on the market and specific homologation requirements.

McLaren says the Artura Spider is the lightest vehicle in its class and thanks to the design of the McLaren Carbon Lightweight Architecture, to which minimal modifications were needed to retain rigidity without the roof, the open top weighs just 62kg more than its Coupe sibling.

The electrically-operated retractable hard top roof mechanism actually accounts for the majority of the weight difference. The roof itself is made from carbon fibre, but buyers can instead opt for an electrochromic glass panel that can brighten the cabin or block more than 99% of sunlight at the touch of a button.

In spite of any weight differences, the Spider matches its tin-top sibling’s three-second 0-100km/h time, while its 8.4 second 0-200km/h sprint is just 0.1 second shy, to put its performance potential into perspective.

But it’s not just the engine that McLaren’s engineers have tinkered with.

The eight-speed SSG transmission, for instance, has a revised calibration and a new pre-fill feature that's said to deliver 25% faster gear shifts.

Furthermore the response rates of the Proactive Damping Control suspension system have been increased by up to 90%, improving reaction to driver input and changes in the road surface.

Inside the MY25 Artura you’ll find a dual-screen HD infotainment system but, ludicrously for a vehicle at this level, the newly available wireless phone charging pad is an optional extra. The standard sound system is a five-speaker McLaren unit, but customers can opt to pay extra for a 12-speaker premium Bowers & Wilkins system.

On the gadget front, Lane Departure Warning and Road Sign Recognition are now fitted as standard, while Blind Spot Monitoring and Cross-Traffic Detection are newly available.

IOL Motoring