Is McLaren Working on a Secret Electric Supercar?

Report suggests future battery-powered sports car would slot between 675LT and P1.

McLaren electric supercar

McLaren is hard at work on an all-electric supercar that would slot into the range between the limited-edition P1 and the slightly-less-limited 675LT, according to a rumor so tasty we couldn't help but pass it along.

The news comes via Auto Express, who claims to have spoken to an anonymous McLaren insider about the electric supercar.

"We have started work on a pure EV to sit in the Ultimate Series," the source told the British car magazine, using the company's internal term for supercar-caliber vehicles.

McLaren has set lofty goals for the car, according to the report. The electric supercar will reportedly accelerate faster than the 666-hp 675LT; it may be able to break the 200 mph barrier, and should be able to cook off its fair share of hot laps, too. “An electric McLaren would need to manage 30 minutes on track with a 30 minute break before heading back out again," the insider said. (This claim would seem to require both an extremely high-voltage charging system and some borderline-revolutionary battery technology, but we'll let it slide for the moment.)

“No one buys a McLaren because they need one. We know that,” the source said. “So we need to make an EV that’s as exciting as a 675LT."

But while this electric McLaren will be a member of the carmaker's Ultimate Series, it won't be the direct replacement for the P1. While the new electric supercar could show up by the end of the decade, the insider claimed the P1's true successor wouldn't show up until the carmaker had taken "another step in technology." That, he (or she) claimed, meant it wouldn't arrive until 2023 at the earliest.

Surprising as this rumor seems at first blush, it's not the first word of a potential electric car to come out of McLaren. At the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year, McLaren mentioned it was already working on an electric powertrain "for evaluation in a possible future-generation Ultimate Series car." If this latest report is true, it seems Macca has decided to edit the word possible clean out of that sentence.