Lewis Hamilton misses out on world's best company car
Lewis Hamilton has missed out on possible the world's best company car after announcing he would be leaving McLaren's Formula One team to join Mercedes.
The news comes a day after the natural successor to the legendary McLaren F1 was announced in the form of the P1 hypercar.
Nestled under a white cloth tepee for much of the opening day of the Paris Motor Show and flanked by the fearsome McLaren MP4-12C, the new McLaren P1 was revealed to crowds late on yesterday.
When the MP4-12C, complete with a 592bhp 3.8-litre V8 engine and a 0-60mph time of 3.3 seconds, is overshadowed, it is time to take notice.
The McLaren P1, described as the 'ultimate sports car' by the British car maker, is a concept car straight from the race track.
And even tucked away in a back room alongside fellow Brit-based car makers Jaguar and Land Rover, the McLaren P1 was always going to steal the show.
It is similar in design to the MP4-12C but with a smaller front end, a distinctive rear wing to improve downforce and a drag reduction system (DRS) lifted straight from the Formula One car Hamilton has abandoned from next season.
McLaren has used its track expertise to tailor the P1 in astonishing detail. This includes aerodynamic wheel-arches, 'snorkel' roof intake and even door shape.
As expected, the P1 uses a carbon fibre monocoque and a mid-engine design that harks back to the McLaren F1 of the 1990s, a car that is an icon in every sense of the word.
According to Design Director Frank Stephenson: "I wanted it to look like a Le Mans racer with that low body, long rear deck and open mesh rear styling to put the mechanicals on view and to help cooling.
"Plus there is the most aggressive rear diffuser ever seen on a road car. Like everything on the McLaren P1, it's there for a good reason."
The lightweight, technologically-advanced McLaren P1 is a car straight from the minds of racing designers and performance is expected to be incredible.
Exact figures have not been announced for the range-topper, but the concept will enter production next year in limited numbers to celebrate the car maker's anniversary.
However, one person who will not be getting behind the wheel is Lewis Hamilton, whose departure from the Formula One team means he will not be using the stunning hypercar as his business drive after previously taking delivery of an MP4-12C when it arrived.
Perhaps he'll settle for the world's fastest electric car instead...
Written by Stephen Hurrell