An electric McLaren was to be one of 15 new models in the firm's Track 22 plan of new launches by 2022. However, this won't be the case, company boss Mike Flewitt confirmed to our sister publication Autocar UK.
"With EVs, developing is the right word, and we have an electric mule running around," said Flewitt. "It's more for the attributes than the powertrain itself. How exciting can an EV be? Next to the Senna, it isn't.
"We couldn't deliver an EV today that would meet the excitement of the McLaren brand. We're working on it. As the technology is developed, the performance capacity will come. It's a good five years away. It's a challenge to us to produce the same engagement as with the P1, Senna and 675LT. It's some way off, and it's not in the plan because we don't have the answer at the moment."
Flewitt revealed that, currently for an EV to have the same performance as the P1, it would have to weigh two tonnes.
He was more positive on hybrid development, though, and repeated his claim that 50 percent of McLarens would be hybrids by 2022 and, "to play it safe", that all would be in 10 years' time. "It's on track," he said.
Hybrids are much easier to integrate into the design of a car's powertrain, he added, allowing them to become an integral part of the engine and powertrain rather than bolt-on devices, as they were previously.
"The downsides are weight and cost, but the upsides are reduced emissions and the ability to access zero-emission zones in cities," said Flewitt. "It's a better driving experience with a hybrid. We can do it with a hybrid but not with an EV."
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