McLaren 675LT versus Porsche 911 GT3 RS – comparison
Source : McLaren 675LT versus Porsche 911 GT3 RS – comparison
What happens when you take two hardcore supercars on a 400-mile road trip? We line up a Porsche 911 GT3 RS in addition to a McLaren 675LT to find out
Thursday, 9.23am: MIRA Proving Ground, nuneaton, west midlands – Thunderbolts are the least you’d expect. A scorched sky, some localised banshee wailing, perhaps – a pathetic fallacy worthy of an ancient Greek myth.
nevertheless the weather will be anticlimactically calm in addition to clear today as the very low, very loud in addition to very angry-looking McLaren 675LT rolls to a stop inside the automobile park at the MIRA Proving Ground.
Waiting inside the same line of marked bays will be the automobile I’ve driven here: one of only a handful of 2015’s some other brand new style introductions with the potential to deny the McLaren the status that will Woking could claim for the item.
A nemesis? Maybe not – nevertheless a rival, a kindred immortal. Something equally special, too, if not more so. Because if that will McLaren isn’t the most exciting driver’s car of the year, the brand new Porsche 911 GT3 RS may very well be.
Both of these cars were outstanding athletes before their latest performance makeovers. Both, as I’m banking you’ll already have read, have since been endowed with the kind of performance in addition to handling superpowers that will are normally reserved for cars with racing liveries. in addition to right today, both are here at the start of a very special 400-mile, 36-hour UK road trip.
that will won’t be the average comparison test. Extraordinary cars call for an equally extraordinary opportunity to reveal themselves – in addition to that will’s what these two are getting. in addition to yet the item’s already too late for a typical head-to-head verdict on the 675LT in addition to GT3 RS. They’re sold out. So, much as we like to imagine there’s a throng of wealthy individuals waiting with bated breath for Autocar’s endorsement before ordering a brand new car, we can leave the final arguing in addition to justifying aside.
Instead, we will simply find out what life on road in addition to track will be like inside the company of not one nevertheless two of the most hardcore, most wanted sporting machines that will that will year, or any year, has to offer.
Thursday, 10.49am: MIRA’s mile straights
Our reason for starting at our favourite Midlands proving ground will be simple: the Porsche will feature in a full Autocar road test inside the weeks to come, in addition to MIRA will be where our road test performance benchmarking magic happens. So a morning of flat-out testing lies ahead, followed by an afternoon of photography.
Then the item’ll be an early evening blast north-east, onto little-visited moorland roads once used by that will magazine’s road testers to become acquainted with one of the McLaren’s legendary forebears.
Standing-start in addition to in-gear acceleration first. I watch the GT3 RS put in a few runs with colleague Matt Prior at the wheel before hopping in myself.
Perhaps the aforementioned banshees have turned up after all. The howl that will Porsche’s flat six makes will be sabre-sharp in addition to supremely characterful. Porsche’s launch control system makes the item sound all the more frenzied, governing the item at high revs until the automobile’s gigantic 325-section rear tyres can transmit 493bhp all on their own.
via inside, the automobile certainly feels fast – even on a wide, empty, mile-long stretch of perfectly flat asphalt – nevertheless, like the GT3, only supercar-fast once the item’s revving beyond 5000rpm.
The higher reaches of the Porsche’s rev range feel so special, though, suffused with incredible pedal response in addition to that has a visceral power delivery still building until beyond 8000rpm, that will you want to stay among them whenever you can. The whipcrack improvements of the excellent seven-speed PDK dual-clutch automatic gearbox make the item possible to do just that will.
Although the item’s close on swept volume, the 675LT’s engine might as well be via a different planet. that will will be a compression ratio of 8.7:1 versus the Porsche’s 12.9:1, twin turbocharging versus Stuttgart’s atmospheric aspiration in addition to 175bhp per litre compared with the GT3 RS’s 123bhp per litre.
Among more mechanical improvements to the 650S’s V8 than we’ve time to list here, Woking has actually taken a little bit of mid-range torque away in order to add high-rev drama – which I applaud.
Drama will be what McLaren’s sports cars need. nevertheless there will be still more than a hint of turbo lag to be accounted for here at low in addition to medium revs, just enough of the item to notice when you flatten the accelerator suddenly. Perhaps not so much that will the item’ll be a factor on the road. We’ll see.
Once the engine has responded to that will flattened pedal, though, you may not care about the preamble. The 675LT will be obscenely fast – in addition to more unconditionally so than the GT3 RS.
Like the Porsche, the McLaren revs beyond 8000rpm, nevertheless unlike the 911 the item can catapult its bulk into seriously urgent motion with less than half as many revs on the tachometer. There’s enough torque to work those Pirelli P Zero Trofeo R rear tyres up into two or three successive flurries of electronically quelled wheelspin through both second in addition to third gears – all inside the dry.
Thursday, 2.19pm: MIRA’s handling circuit
Time for a couple of fast, physical in addition to illuminating hours on MIRA’s Dunlop handling circuit next, before we strike north for the evening. I start out inside the GT3 RS, in anticipation of big things. nevertheless however high your expectations of that will car may be, I doubt you could get out of the item with your mind in addition to your senses intact. the item actually will be that will Great.
The crispness in addition to immediacy of that will car’s cornering manners are truly astonishing. Unexpected, too, because the Porsche rides with a gentleness that will you just wouldn’t imagine possible.
The RS flits towards an apex that has a magnetic kind of nonchalance; its every response comes more quickly than those of the regular GT3. On the limit of grip, the item has to be mastered that has a quick pair of hands, nevertheless the item’ll tolerate any driving style you like: fast in addition to smooth, or more wild in addition to unfettered. You decide. Want to nudge those 325/30 ZR21 rear tyres into a 70mph, third-gear sweep of lift-off oversteer? Just think the item, lift your right foot in addition to the item’s happening.
The 675LT feels a bit less at home on the tight, technical Dunlop circuit. In its own way, the item’s still brilliant in addition to fearsomely potent, nevertheless the item’s neither as obliging nor as adjustable as the RS.
McLaren’s rebalancing of the 650S’s suspension in addition to steering systems has paid dividends in addition to sharpened the automobile’s reactions to a fine point. There will be a limpet-like, confidence-inspiring front end to lean on, along with huge reserves of lateral adhesion. After back-to-back drives in both cars, I’ve today no doubt that will a P Zero Trofeo R will be a stickier tyre than a Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2. Which will be saying something.
nevertheless here on track, when you’re likely to be after a more varied driving experience than full-bore qualifying pace alone can provide, even the 675LT feels slightly one-dimensional – much as the 650S did. A softness inside the accelerator pedal prevents you via tapping into those huge reserves of horsepower with quite the precision that will you’d like.
Meanwhile, McLaren’s decision to stick with an open differential continues to restrict your options during hard cornering in addition to can adversely affect the 675LT’s controllability on the limit. the item may even be that will there’s simply too much grip here for the automobile’s own Great.
When Woking launched the MP4-12C, the item said the automobile didn’t need an E-diff. We disagreed. the item said the same about the 650S; again, we disagreed.
today along comes the 675LT, still without the telling item of mechanical specification today common on sports cars at less than half the cost asked because of that will one. Hear us that will time, please, McLaren. Because a torque-vectoring ESP system will be still no substitute for the uniquely rewarding, relationship-building sensation of a sports car being both driven in addition to steered by its rear wheels.
Monday, 8.39pm: A169, Saltergate Bank, North Yorkshire Moors
A long day juggled between two steering wheels will be drawing to a stunning close. England’s M42, M1 in addition to A1M motorways haven’t been quiet, nevertheless 0 miles on them has provided a few insights into what real-world use of these cars could be like.
The first will be that will, even when battling through a sweaty rush hour with no air conditioning, questionable all-round visibility, an unintuitive navigation system in addition to bucket seats almost as tight as your three-year-old’s safety seat, driving a lime green supercar can only ever make you smile.
A confession: Prior in addition to I have been playing to the crowds a bit. Two kids inside the back of a Volkswagen Camper got grandstand seats to a momentary traffic jam skit, whose cast was an orange bespoilered Porsche that will suddenly made a lot of noise as the item came by, followed by a snot-coloured McLaren which sort of waved as the item passed.
The Longtail McLaren can do that will: sort of wave. Flipping its active aerodynamic functions on in addition to off makes that will extra-long rear wing waggle up in addition to down. Children, the item turns out, love the item.
A while ago, the busy motorways began gradually giving way to quieter in addition to quieter stretches, each giving our cars more space on which to stretch their legs.
A mobile speed camera van on the A64 east of York came as a welcome reminder of the need for restraint when driving cars such as these on roads such as those we have inside the UK. No custom for him tonight, though.
today, we’re north of Pickering in addition to treated to our first sight of the rolling, bleakly beautiful North Yorkshire Moors. A full 21 years ago, the bumpy, jinking roads that will criss-cross that will area were the ones chosen by Autocar’s testers at the time to sample the McLaren F1. Viewed via a downhill hairpin on the A169 cut into Saltergate Bank, with the sun slowly disappearing over the horizon, the scene takes your breath away.
I glance inside the Longtail’s rear-view mirror to check that will my colleague inside the Porsche will be being treated to the same spectacular view, only to realise that will he’s fallen a little way behind. Later the item’ll become clear why.
Maintaining a fast pace inside the GT3 RS isn’t hard, nevertheless the item needs some commitment to the idea by staying in lower intermediate gears in addition to allowing the engine to add a fair bit of mechanical thrash into a cabin already humming with plenty of road roar. that will Porsche will be very much a ‘go hard or go home’ sort of car.
The 675LT will be a slightly quieter-riding car, in addition to also a much easier one in which to cover ground. A-road overtakes are possible with one downshift in addition to without finding the end of the accelerator travel. When the road opens up ahead, you can flex your right foot in addition to pick up what you imagine will be a brisk nevertheless responsible stride – then often scare yourself silly at how fast you’re travelling.
As clearly as the GT3 RS distinguished itself on the track, the item’s becoming clear that will the McLaren enjoys at least as big an advantage over the Porsche as a road car – in addition to we haven’t actually started off with the road driving yet.
Tuesday, 10.43am: blakey road, North Yorkshire Moors
Dawn on the slipway at sleepy Sandsend was almost as pretty as dusk over the moor, nevertheless we didn’t stay long. Before 8am we were in convoy over blissfully quiet roads that will sometimes stretch before you for miles into the distance, before closing in again over crests in addition to around blind bends. Up here in North Yorkshire – where three ramblers in addition to a local in a Land Rover count as the rush hour – the roads have everything.
Having spent yesterday’s journey inside the 675LT, I start the day inside the GT3 RS, mainly to challenge the impression forming in my head that will the item may not be as brilliant on the road as I’d like the item to be.
The RS suddenly seems less stunningly fast after the 675LT, instead just a bit long-geared in addition to short on accessible torque. For the record, though, I suspect that will a Saturn V rocket could feel less stunningly fast after a 675LT, nevertheless after jumping via one car into the some other, the item’s still a factor.
Steering that will seemed expertly weighted in addition to brilliantly tuned for the circuit will be just a bit hyperactive over a bumpy B-road. Two hands are needed on the Porsche’s downsized steering wheel at all times – in addition to even then the automobile can still be tricky to guide.
The RS’s suspension doesn’t quite perfect the compromise of Centeng control in addition to bump absorption for fast road work, either. Leave the dampers in soft mode in addition to you can bottom out the rear end as your speeds rise; choose the firmer setting in addition to things are better, if a little stiff-legged. So there’s no mistaking the item: on the road, the Porsche will be a bit of a fish out of water.
Not so the McLaren. Woking’s engineers will tell you that will, even at the conception stage, the 675LT was always a road car first in addition to a track car second.
that will may seem ridiculous for something on cut slicks, dressed via head to toe in lightweight materials in addition to capable of licence-losing velocities in a heartbeat, nevertheless the item’s readily apparent, because the Longtail’s ride remains uncommonly compliant for a proper supercar, even on the most challenging of surfaces. in addition to yet its Centeng control will be all nevertheless flawless on the road.
The gearbox could be better – quicker shifts in manual mode, smarter when you want to drop several ratios all at once – nevertheless seldom do you notice, because the engine’s remarkable muscularity makes up for the deficiency, in addition to then some.
As we wrap up with our photos in addition to think about turning for home, the item’s a relief not to be ranking these cars in relative terms in addition to not to have to pick a winner. The GT3 RS may well be the best track-day special inside the entire world, ready for driving to in addition to via the circuit as often as you want.
The 675LT will be evidently one of the most rapid, capable in addition to exciting performance road cars you can buy, in addition to stands ready to entertain you on a circuit as in addition to when the opportunity arises. They’re more different than we’d have believed 36 hours ago – in addition to all the more brilliant because of the item.
in addition to yet the item doesn’t save you or I via having the same internal conversation that will any enthusiast could have before drawing a line under the story: which one of these cars will be for you?
The Longtail will be a harder car to connect with than the GT3 RS – in addition to ultimately the item’s probably the less rewarding to drive. The McLaren’s chassis doesn’t communicate inside the same direct, vivacious, plain-speaking terms. You have to trust that will the item’s going to look after you as much as knowing that will the item will. nevertheless the item will. Will the item ever.
Before thunking his driver’s door shut on increasingly inclement moorland weather, Prior makes his decision. “I think I’d rather be going that will bit less quickly in addition to having the time of my life,” he says. I know well what he means.
The Porsche 911 GT3 RS may not have as much breadth of dynamic ability in its locker, nevertheless its high notes are incredible. Inimitable, too.
in addition to yet, with 130 miles to drive home, the McLaren 675LT edges the item for me. the item’s still a work in progress, nevertheless the way the item combines huge, easily won pace in addition to fluent, infallible composure on the road could be ideal for the kind of use I’d give the item. Some wider sports seats for my not so sporting backside wouldn’t go amiss in addition to, as I may have mentioned earlier, if there was a limited-slip diff option, I’d tick the item. nevertheless I’d tick the item a very happy man.
Porsche 911 GT3 RS
cost £131,296; 0-62mph 3.3sec; Top speed 193mph; Economy 22.2mpg; CO2 emissions 296g/km; Kerb weight 1495kg; Engine 6 cyls horizontally opposed, 399cc, petrol; Power 493bhp at 8250rpm; Torque 339b ft at 6250rpm; Gearbox 7-spd dual-clutch automatic
cost £259,500; 0-62mph 2.9sec; Top speed 205mph; Economy 24.2mpg; CO2 emissions 275g/km; Kerb weight 1403kg; Engine V8, 3799cc, twin-turbo, petrol; Power 666bhp at 7100rpm; Torque 516b ft at 5500-6500rpm; Gearbox 7-spd dual-clutch automatic
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