April 21, 2018

McLaren F1 GTR "Longtail" Turns 20, Gets Artistic Photo Shoot

The may be all modern and fancy with its fresh looks and drivetrain, but which was launched more than decades ago gets nearly as much attention nowadays. Introduced in 1992 as the most innovative supercar of its time, the F1 went racing in 1995 and won the in its maiden season. In November 1996, rolled out an upgraded model, which wasn’t as successful as the original GTR on the race track but it’s considered one of the most exotic McLarens ever built. With the “Longtail” exactly 20 years old as of November 2016, McLaren celebrates by releasing a handful of high-res pictures of a Gulf-liveried example.

Developed for the 1997 racing season, the GTR “Longtail” featured a much longer nose and rear section, wider fenders and a bigger rear wing. A complete redesign rather than just an update, the “Longtail” boasted improved aerodynamic downforce in order to compete with prototypes such as the and Unlike the exterior, the interior carried over from the standard GTR, but McLaren added a new steering wheel, gear shifter, and center stack.

More changes were operated under the hood, where a stroke reduction brought the sourced 6.1-liter V-12 down to 6.0 liters in an attempt to prolong its life and improve reliability. The gearbox was also replaced with a new X-trac six-speed sequential transmission with quicker shifts. FIA-spec cars were still limited to the 600-horsepower output imposed by the air restrictor, but cars entered in other series had their engines tweaked to generate as much as 900 horses. For a that tipped the scales at only 2,018 pounds, it was downright amazing.

But, despite its redesigned aerodynamics, the F1 GTR “Longtail” was unable to compete with the new Mercedes-Benz CLK-GTR, which won the FIA GT championship with a comfortable lead. The McLaren teams finished second and third in the standings in what became the F1’s final official season in GT racing. At the 1997 24 Hours of Le Mans, the GTR finished second and third, behind the seemingly unbeatable TWR WSC-95, but ahead of the and several LMP cars. An impressive performance given the circumstances; one that McLaren takes great pride in given that the anniversary photo shoot was made with the Gulf-liveried, No. 41 “Longtail” that finished second at Le Mans in the hands of Jean-Marc Gounon, Pierre-Henri Raphanel and Anders Olofsson.

Continue reading for the full story.


McLaren F1 GTR "Longtail" Turns 20, Gets Artistic Photo Shoot

The may be all modern and fancy with its fresh looks and drivetrain, but which was launched more than decades ago gets nearly as much attention nowadays. Introduced in 1992 as the most innovative supercar of its time, the F1 went racing in 1995 and won the in its maiden season. In November 1996, rolled out an upgraded model, which wasn’t as successful as the original GTR on the race track but it’s considered one of the most exotic McLarens ever built. With the “Longtail” exactly 20 years old as of November 2016, McLaren celebrates by releasing a handful of high-res pictures of a Gulf-liveried example.

Developed for the 1997 racing season, the GTR “Longtail” featured a much longer nose and rear section, wider fenders and a bigger rear wing. A complete redesign rather than just an update, the “Longtail” boasted improved aerodynamic downforce in order to compete with prototypes such as the and Unlike the exterior, the interior carried over from the standard GTR, but McLaren added a new steering wheel, gear shifter, and center stack.

More changes were operated under the hood, where a stroke reduction brought the sourced 6.1-liter V-12 down to 6.0 liters in an attempt to prolong its life and improve reliability. The gearbox was also replaced with a new X-trac six-speed sequential transmission with quicker shifts. FIA-spec cars were still limited to the 600-horsepower output imposed by the air restrictor, but cars entered in other series had their engines tweaked to generate as much as 900 horses. For a that tipped the scales at only 2,018 pounds, it was downright amazing.

But, despite its redesigned aerodynamics, the F1 GTR “Longtail” was unable to compete with the new Mercedes-Benz CLK-GTR, which won the FIA GT championship with a comfortable lead. The McLaren teams finished second and third in the standings in what became the F1’s final official season in GT racing. At the 1997 24 Hours of Le Mans, the GTR finished second and third, behind the seemingly unbeatable TWR WSC-95, but ahead of the and several LMP cars. An impressive performance given the circumstances; one that McLaren takes great pride in given that the anniversary photo shoot was made with the Gulf-liveried, No. 41 “Longtail” that finished second at Le Mans in the hands of Jean-Marc Gounon, Pierre-Henri Raphanel and Anders Olofsson.

Continue reading for the full story.


(image)
McLaren F1 GTR "Longtail" Turns 20, Gets Artistic Photo Shoot

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