McLaren has launched its second model in the new Sports Series at the Shanghai Motor Show. The most attainable McLaren yet, the 540C Coupe joins the recently revealed 570S Coupe in the Sports Series as the brand brings its race derived DNA to a new audience and segment. These introductions bring the number of new McLarens launched in 2015 to four as the brand continues its rapid growth.
The 540C Coupe is a pure McLaren, and a pure sports car, sharing its DNA with the models in the Super Series and Ultimate Series, including a lightweight carbon fibre chassis and race-derived technologies. It is fitted with a mid-mounted 3.8-litre twin turbocharged V8 engine which has been developed to be responsive and thrilling, even at low engine speeds. As its name suggests, the Sports Series dedicated application of the award-winning McLaren power unit generates 532bhp at 7,500 rpm and 540Nm of torque at 3,500-6,500 rpm.
At the heart of the 540C, as with the 570S, is the unique carbon fibre MonoCell II chassis which has been newly designed with a greater focus on day-to-day usability, offering improved ingress to and egress from the cabin, along with class-leading occupant protection and safety. A dry weight of as low as 1,311kg is achieved as a result of this lightweight structure and the use of aluminium body panels. This figure sees the 540C almost 150kg lighter than its closest competitor.
Power is delivered through the rear wheels via a seven-speed seamless shift gearbox (SSG) which, aided by the low weight of the 540C, sees the 0 to 100km/hr sprint completed in 3.5 seconds, 0 to 200km/hr, and on to a top speed of 320km/hr.
The 540C Coupe is fitted with distinctive new cast alloy wheels, available with silver or stealth finish, 19-inch at the front and 20-inch at the rear. These are fitted with Pirelli P Zero tyres as standard, which have been developed specifically for the Sports Series to offer high levels of performance in all conditions, with progressive levels of grip and a focus on comfort. The 540C retains the Formula 1-derived Brake Steer system, designed to aid cornering through the application of braking force to the inside rear wheel. This enables later braking into corners, and earlier application of power on exit.
The interior of the Sports Series has been created with a focus on space and ergonomics, offering great outward visibility and interior space for occupants and their belongings. Organic curves carried inside from the exterior design bring delicate tension without aggression to ensure the cabin remains a welcoming environment.
Inside the cabin, the 540C Coupe is luxuriously appointed with leather upholstery to the seats, dashboard and lower doors as standard. The 'floating' centre console features a seven-inch IRIS touchscreen, which controls all elements of the infotainment system. The air conditioning controls are also incorporated, as first seen on the McLaren P1, minimising switchgear in the cabin. The touchscreen also controls the standard DAB digital radio, as well as satellite navigation, Bluetooth telephony and media streaming, voice activation and the audio media player. The IRIS system also includes the electronic owner's manual.
The McLaren 540C Coupe is the second model to join the Sports Series, and sits alongside the 570S Coupe. Both models are available to order from the dedicated global McLaren retail network, operating in every major automotive market, in more than 30 countries.
Source : MotorOctane