22 June 2022

McLaren Artura First Impressions

 I was invited to test drive the Artura on 22 Jun. Thanks to McLaren NJ for hosting!

Artura specific comments:

  • Hybrid is very nice, in particular for stop-and-go. However, comfort mode holds EV mode for longer than my taste, leading to an impression of a lethargic car, especially when accelerating past 20mph (first mistake I made during the test drive).
  • Same great hydraulic steering rack with the heft of a 600LT's. Honestly the heft surprised me, as I expected a more "daily drivable" car to bias towards lighter steering.
  • Steering+chassis seems to have filtered the smaller road imperfections, i.e. higher signal-to-noise ratio. This made the ride feel significantly more refined, but less exciting for my taste.
  • V6 sound is tuned towards the lower octaves, as can be heard from various YouTube videos.
  • The sofas are softer than those in the 570 series, but not as plush as those in the GT.
  • The sofas don't go as far forward as expected, i.e. I had to slouch to be able to fully rest my foot on the dead pedal. If I were ordering a car, I would get the Clubsport seats with lumbar: I sat in these in the dummy car and thought they provided me the best seating position of any car that I have tried.
  • The seat controls have been moved to the side of the seat, consistent with the rest of the industry, and a departure from those in previous McLarens. I think new clients will highly welcome this change. See photo below!
  • Braking is indeed purely mechanical. The carbon brakes bite _hard_, as expected.
  • Rearward visibility is good, though not great like in the 720S coupe. I think the rear window is a bit larger than that of the 570S's.
  • Heard motor whine when accelerating at highway speeds, but no turbo whistle (at ~4k rpm).
  • Front lift works a couple seconds faster than that of the 570 series. You still to turn the car on (not just accessory mode), but the engine does not need to turn on to use the lift.
  • Engine still drones when cruising at ~1800rpm in 8th gear (~70mph).
  • I guess the new infotainment and CarPlay is nice.


  • I still prefer the short metal shift paddles to the carbon shift paddles.

tl;dr Artura is too soft and refined for my tastes; my parents would like it. Looking forward to the LT version (and also the GT4 race car)!

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