McLaren Artura Spider Loses Roof, Gains 19 HP And A Peel-Out Mode


McLaren’s Artura didn’t have the easiest of introductions to market. And though the Brit supercar firm did get a handle on its tendency to catch fire, it still had a few niggles. Common criticisms from reviewers included moans about the anaemic-sounding V6 hybrid engine and the meagre electric driving range. Some buyers would also have been put off by the fact that it was only available as a coupe.

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There was never any doubt that McLaren was going to answer that last gripe by making an Artura Spider. But it’s maybe more of a surprise to find that the firm has used the Spider launch as a platform to introduce a bunch of other changes that will go into every MY25 Artura.

McLaren says the Artura’s carbon and aluminium structure is so stiff that the Spider’s 137 lbs (62 kg) weight penalty over the coupe is accounted for almost entirely by the folding hardtop mechanism, with very little additional work required. And even with that extra ballast on board the curb weight stands at 3,252 lbs (1,475 kg), which is pretty light for the class – a Ferrari 296 GTS comes in at 3,395 lbs (1,540 kg). The McLaren’s roof is also snappier than the Ferrari’s, requiring 11 seconds to retract, versus 14 for the Italian car.

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Helping partially offset the Spider’s weight gain compared with the original Artrura coupe is a 19 hp (19 PS) boost for the 3.0-liter V6 that comes courtesy of a new ECU map. That takes the ICE unit’s output to 596 hp (605 PS), to which is added the 94 hp (95 PS) produced by the electric motor stashed inside the dual-clutch transmission. In total the Artura Spider – and every other MY25 Artura, because the mods are being rolled out to coupes, too – now pumps out 690 hp (700 PS) and 531 lb-ft (720 Nm) of torque.

Related: Latest McLaren Artura Recall Is Over A Fire Risk From Bad Fuel Pipe

Zero to 62 mph (100 kmh) takes 3.0 seconds and the quarter mile is ticked off in 10.8 seconds, the first number being identical to the pre-power boost coupe’s (the post-upgrade hardtop could be faster) and the second one only a tenth longer. McLaren says here’s no change to the electronically limited 205 mph (330 kmh) top speed.

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But there have been changes made to alter how exciting the MY25 Arturas sound on the way to that vmax. The exhaust system has new valves, a tuned resonator and conical tailpipes which are all claimed to help create a ‘cleaner’ sound between the mid-range and the rev limit. Buyers wanting more drama can select an optional sports exhaust that uses a symposer, which is essentially a tube channeling sound waves into the cabin.

Other MY25 upgrades include improvements to the suspension and transmission to make both respond more quickly, revised ABS calibration and a small range boost in electric mode from 19 miles (31 km) to 21 miles (33 km). But Spider roof aside, the 2025 feature likely to get the most YouTube and TikTok watch minutes is the ‘Spinning Wheel Pull-Away’ mode. Supercars usually look really lame when pulling away hard from a dead-stop unless you’ve got launch control activated, and that can often be a pain to set up. But with what McLaren should really have called ‘Peel-Out Mode’ engaged you can simply boot the right pedal and exit in a screechy cloud of smoked Pirelli P Zeros. That’s a fun idea from a company who was once so buttoned-up it wouldn’t even let owners switch the ESP off.

The Artura Spider costs $281,008/£221,500, which means it’s around $25k more expensive than the coupe. But assuming that if you can afford one you can afford the other, it’s hard to see why you wouldn’t take the Spider when it offers almost everything the coupe offers with the roof in place, but with sun-kissed fun times only ever a button push and 11 seconds away.

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