When you unlock the doors to your new McLaren 720S, the engine bay will illuminate in searing blood red as part of the welcome greeting. If that’s not enough motivation to sink more than a quarter million dollars into the latest street foe for the Ford GT and Ferrari 488, then perhaps the 710-horsepower twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 will excite your pocketbook.
McLaren released a little more information on the M480T engine when the automaker unveiled the 720S at the Geneva Auto Show on Tuesday. The 720S replaces the 650S, which was powered by the award-winning M838T 3.8-liter V8. McLaren says the new engine is based on the previous architecture but will feature 41 percent new parts, including crankshaft, cylinder heads, pistons, turbochargers and exhaust.
Some questions were still left unanswered about the new engine. The previous 3.8-liter sported a flat-plane crank and didn’t have direct injection. Most likely the 180-degree crankshaft will carry over but there hasn’t been any mention in the world press so far if McLaren stepped up to DI for the new engine.
The M480T is rated at 720PS or 710 horsepower at 7,500 rpm. Peak torque is 770 Nm or 568 lb-ft at 5,500 rpm. Redline is listed at 8,500 rpm. Zero-to-sixty performance is estimated at 2.8 seconds. According to press reports, the driver will have a choice of two exhaust notes with the car. Throttle response is expected to improve with the use of ultra-low inertia, twin-scroll turbochargers.