Engineering and Designing Features behind the McLaren P1
|   Friday, May 31, 2013
McLaren has set up new benchmarks for the premium car makers when it comes to designing hyper cars, with the Hybrid P1. The P1 is expected to hit showrooms by the end of 2013 and engineers at McLaren say that they had just one priority while designing this vehicle – it was to become the best driver's car on road. Some of the rivals to the P1 are the Porsche 918 Spyder and the LaFerrari. However, these vehicles have a tough standard to compete against.


The 3.8 liter turbo charged engine powering the P1 has set up a new standard for the company and this is 90 percent innovation and new. Even though the engine is based on the one used in the MP 4 Series vehicles, changes have been made to the fuel cylinder, crank train, block design, cylinder heads, turbo charger and the transmission system.

The turbo charger operates at close to 980 degree Celsius, while the exhaust temperature is as high as 900 degree Celsius. The electric boosting technology on the P1 was initially dubbed KERS – as in Formula One – but the name was promptly changed to IPAS (Instant Power Assist System) as the working parameters and capability of the systems are fairly different.

The electric motor in the P1 weighs close to 26 kg while power displacement is almost double that of a KERS motor. KERS displace 81 BHP while the IPAS is capable of displacing close to 176 BHP. The battery system in IPAS features six distinct modules while weighing 96 kg while each battery features 56 cells. To ensure the maximum amount of charge through a battery at all times, the cells can transfer power amongst themselves.

The P1 is capable of running on electric power till 99 MPH and has a combined driving range of 6.5 Miles. McLaren has devised the battery to run for roughly a decade but it is heavily based on the usage. The battery has the ability to displace 176 BHP for nearly 20 minutes although this depends on the operator's driving style and the battery charge.

The battery network on the P1 can be charged directly via the excess energy in the engine or has the ability to draw power directly through a conventional power source. The P1 is capable of emancipating equivalent performances on road as well on a race track and this ensures that the vehicle is fit for cruising as well as for the occasional burst of high speed enthusiasm. Power from the brakes however is not regained and this decision was taken exclusively by the engineers at McLaren.

The rear wing on the P1 can bend till a maximum of 29 degrees and this helps the vehicle corner at high speeds even on standard road legal tires. Down force of close to 600 kg is obtained on the P1 and this vehicle achieves it close to 160 MPH. McLaren has inserted a drag resistant system on the P1 and this helps the car battle the opposing wind forces effectively.
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