Chopping the top off a modern car robs it of structural rigidity — the stiffness that allows it to go into corners at speed and that protects occupants in an accident. Plus the addition of a fabric or metal folding roof and its raising and lowering mechanism then adds extra weight to the car so it’s slower in a straight line too.
However, with the 570S Spider, unveiled Wednesday ahead of its first official public appearance at the Goodwood Festival of Speed on June 29, McLaren claims that its managed to build a convertible that’s as good as the coupé. “This is a convertible without compromise,” said company CEO, Mike Flewitt. “Its mid-engined layout and carbon fiber MonoCell II chassis guarantee the same thrilling dynamic performance and exceptional driver involvement enjoyed in a 570S Coupé.”
So, the car can accelerate from 0-100km/h in 3.2 seconds (just like the coupé) and on to a top speed of 204mph (328km/h). In fact, in terms of performance data, the only time the Spider will fall behind the coupé is when racing with the roof down. Then the top speed is capped at 196mph (315km/h).
To ensure cornering and stopping is also on par with the coupé, McLaren has given the car a rear wing that stands 12mm taller to make up for the aerodynamic shortfall created when the roof is down.
And even though the car has 562bhp on tap, thanks to its phenomenal electronic suspension setup plus the company’s brake steer technology that can stop the inside wheel from turning when cornering for added grip and stability, it’s potentially an everyday driver.
A semi-practical supercar would bring the McLaren into the same category as the Porsche 911 Turbo cabriolet and in that respect, if judged on performance figures, power-to-weight ratio and cost, the McLaren will come up trumps. The company has issued a guide price, in pounds sterling of £164,750 ($211,000) before optional extras or bespoke treatments.
“The McLaren 570S Spider is the most attainable McLaren Spider to date and adds yet another dimension to the McLaren Sports Series family,” said Flewitt.