McLaren’s 650S Connects the Super-Car Dots


If you are a fan of the British super car outfit McLaren’s 12C and the P1, then you’ll love the 650s. Built specifically to be slotted between the two, the 650S is exactly what you’d expect: a harmonious blending of the company’s insane P1 and its more pedestrian 12C sibling.

The 650S shares the structure of the MP4-12C, which is McLaren’s entry-level offering, though it has been generously endowed with styling cues from the $1.15 million, 903-horsepower hybrid P1. Those hooked headlights and the delightfully happy face (arguably one of the happiest super car faces) are directly related to the P1; in stature, the 650S shares more with the compact 12C than the elongated super-hybrid.

In the rear, the back end looks entirely torn from the MP4-12C, and from some leaked pictures ahead of the 650S’s Geneva reveal, it looks like the two could be easily mistaken for one another, at least from behind.

In conclusion, regarding the exterior, McLaren played it safe with the design, fusing its two beloved models into a car that, for McLaren fans, is almost guaranteed to please. However, it might be somewhat disappointing to those who were hoping for a more radical approach.


The 650 part, naturally, refers to the horsepower that the engine (presumably the same 3.8-liter twin turbo V8 found in the 12C) will lay down. Autoblog surmises that it will fall at 650 metric horsepower, or 641 horsepower, which, although does fall between the 616 from the 12C and the 903 from the P1, isn’t as middle of the road as one might expect. Nonetheless, we’ll have to wait until Geneva to find out more.

Pricing, not surprisingly, hasn’t been disclosed, but you can expect it come in well under the $1.15 million that the P1 runs for but likely at a premium to the $240,000 or so a new MP4-12C costs. No word yet on a convertible variant, and it’s also unclear as to whether the 12C and the 650S will coexist or if the latter will one day take over the 12C’s place as McLaren’s most affordable option.