This carbon-clad McLaren Senna looks incredible

28th February 2018
Bob Murray

If you like carbon-fibre you’ll love this. It’s McLaren’s new Ultimate Series car according to Woking’s special ops department, and it’s all set to wow showgoers at next week’s Geneva Motor Show.


The McLaren Senna was only unveiled in December but already McLaren Special Operations have been at work on the £750,000 211mph road-legal track car. And no prizes for guessing what the colour scheme is…

The bespoke project by MSO combines visual carbon-fibre body with yellow sills and wings and flashes of green on the brake callipers, for an overdose of carbon – and colours redolent of the famous helmet of the eponymous three-times World Champion, itself modelled on the colours of the Brazilian flag.

It is in this dramatic form that the Senna will take its bow at the Geneva Motor Show on 6 March, to be joined on the stand by the Victory Grey Senna already seen.


With a £300,000 price tag for the MSO work alone, making this a £1.05m machine, the bespoke transformation doesn’t come cheaply. While all 500 of the standard Sennas to be made have both carbon chassis and bodies, the ‘Carbon Theme’ MSO one-off eschews paint and goes naked. The Visual Carbon Fibre set comprises 67 body parts that takes 1000 hours to produce – McLaren says a whole standard Senna takes 300 hours to hand-assemble.

The Solar Yellow highlights – sill outers, rear wing, front aero blades – are said to account for 250 hours of MSO work alone. The colour scheme is completed by Laurel Green brake callipers and, inside, the same green for the door struts. The cabin is trimmed in Carbon Black Alcantara and S (for Senna) logos feature both inside and out.

And those tasty wheels? They are new seven-spokers comprising forged alloy centres with carbon-fibre rims and which at 7.5kg are per cent lighter than the standard wheels. MSO says they will be available to order as a retailer-fit option for all Sennas. 


The end result is a million pound McLaren with rather more visual impact than the flat red car which first previewed the Senna last December. That looked purposeful but in a very functional way. 

But then as McLaren says, the Senna is its purest expression yet of form follows function – with the function, in this case, to be the fastest road-legal McLaren ever around any given circuit. With its simple rear-drive, non-hybrid 789bhp V8, few concessions to road use and lightweight – four large men lighter than a McLaren P1 – the Senna is Woking’s performance hero to battle coming new road racers from Aston and Mercedes.

The McLaren is said to accelerate from 0-124mph in 6.8 seconds and when travelling at 155mph have the weight of the average cow (800kg) mashing it into the tarmac. 

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