Car Torque: McLaren numbers crunched
McLaren has released the vital statistics of its new supercar, the P1, leading up to its official launch at the Geneva Motor Show, which starts on March 5.
With a 3.8-litre twin-turbo V8 engine and an electric motor providing an instant power boost when required, the P1 can hit 100km/h in under three seconds, 200km/h in under seven seconds and 300km/h in less than 17 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 350km/h.
Aside from a wealth of Formula One-derived technology, the P1 can also play green machine when required. It can be powered solely by the electric motor at speeds of up to 50km/h, with a range of 20km.
HYUNDAI’S HARD SELL
Hyundai has become the first carmaker in the world to begin assembly-line production of zero-emissions hydrogen-powered cars.
The ix35 Fuel Cell – produced at the Ulsan plant in Korea and based on the maker’s ix35 crossover wagon – is destined for fleet use only. The first run of 15 cars are going to the Municipality of Copenhagen, while another two are destined for Skane, Sweden.
Its assembly line production but hardly mass-production: Hyundai will build 1000 ix35 Fuel Cell vehicles by 2015, with the majority going to European countries. The European Union has a long-term strategy for hydrogen power and has a programme to build a network of filling stations.
In a fuel cell car, hydrogen is converted into electricity through a chemical reaction. The only emission is water.
NEW LIFE WITH NINE GEARS
Not so long ago, six gears was considered pretty swish for an automatic gearbox. Then Mercedes-Benz came along and said no, seven is the optimum number. A little later, Lexus added another to make eight.
Now, Land Rover has revealed a new nine-speed transmission it has developed in partnership with specialist maker ZF. The company claims the ‘9HP’ brings about significant improvements in fuel economy, lower ratios help off-road ability and an adaptive shift protocol remembers the style of different drivers.
The transmission is designed specifically for transverse-engined vehicles – such as the Range Rover Evoque – and is lighter than the current six-speed currently used by Land Rover.
ZF is also the maker of the eight-speed gearbox already used in the new Range Rover and just added to the Land Rover Discovery.