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Ferrari F40 vs. McLaren P1 Drag Race Shows What a Difference 25 Years Can Make

It was never going to be close. But an F40 is still pretty fast.

Yes, drag racing a modern hybrid hypercar against something roughly 25 years its senior might very well be an exercise in asking questions you already know the answer to. When you’re given access to a McLaren P1, a Ferrari F40 and an empty runway, though, it’d almost be rude not to. This is exactly what the folks at Lovecars on YouTube, a group that includes Top Gear and Fifth Gear alum Tiff Needell, have done. 

Despite them being worlds apart, both the P1 and F40 use mid-mounted, twin-turbo V8s as well as a whole lot of carbon fiber but that’s pretty much where the similarities stop. The McLaren’s power unit is a 3.8-liter hybrid while the Ferrari uses a 2.9-liter and comes from a time when the Prius was just a twinkle in Toyota’s eye. As a result, the P1 produces 903 horsepower and gets to 62 mph in 2.8 seconds, almost double the ponies and a good amount quicker than the F40’s 471 hp and official zero to 62 time of 4.1 seconds. 

The Ferrari also uses a five-speed manual while the McLaren benefits from a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic. The Italian car’s gated manual might win big emotional points but doesn’t really count for much in the context of a drag race.

With all that in mind, it really shouldn’t be a surprise which car comes out victorious in a head-to-head sprint (or, in the P1’s case here, a light and respectful jog). 

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h/t: Motor1