The McLaren F1 is a car that needs no introduction, yet its significance to the history of the automobile in general warrants a brief overview. We stumbled on this cool video recently that tells a good story that most people don’t know. It is a little grainy, but well worth suffering through.
The McLaren F1 was built and designed on a blank sheet of paper by a team led by Gordon Murray and Ron Dennis, who were looking to make zero compromises in the pursuit of automotive perfection. In doing so, they managed to write themselves into the annals of motoring history. On March 31, 1998, a McLaren F1 (chassis XP5) achieved a top speed of 240.14 mph at the Ehra-Lessien Proving Ground in Germany, setting a record for road going production cars that would stand for nearly seven years, smashing the previous record held by a Jaguar XJ220 by almost 30 mph. To this day, the McLaren F1 still holds the record as the fastest naturally aspirated production car.
Even though it was purposely built to be the world’s finest road car, the F1’s performance was unrivaled on the track, and a McLaren F1 took 1st overall in the 1995 24 Hours of Le Mans.
To those at McLaren, and in the opinion of many car enthusiasts worldwide, the F1 is the ultimate road car. Some would further argue that it is the greatest automobile ever built.