Last year, during the press conference at the launch of the 570GT, McLaren’s people talked about their future products, among which they promised “a surprise” - and none of the journos attending the event managed to guess what it would be.
As it turns out, it was the Senna hypercar that was revealed on December 9. A big surprise, indeed, as no one saw that one coming, but not necessarily a good one.
When it was launched, the otherwise very competent MP4-12C received lots of flak for its uninspired looks. McLaren’s designers obviously listened and their subsequent models were much more special.
Which brings us to its latest hypercar that’s named after the late Ayrton Senna, who many consider as the greatest Formula 1 driver of all times.
Now, beauty may be in the eye of the beholder, but to this editor’s eyes, the Senna is the ugliest thing to ever come out of Woking. There’s no doubt that it’ll be amazing to drive, but perhaps, when they were penning it, they took the “form follows function” dictum at heart a tad too much.
Thus, the end result might produce tons of downforce and boast blistering performance, but its looks are so incongruous even a mother would have trouble calling it beautiful.
I have no doubt that every scoop, air intake and what-have-you serves a purpose and that it will be a blast to drive, especially on a track. I also think that McLaren’s own P1, for example, looks way better, and I’m baffled why they would grace this particular car with Senna’s name. Of all the monikers they could come up with, they chose that of the most iconic F1 driver for what, to my eyes at least, is just plain ugly.
Checking out the comments section, I discovered that I am not alone, as a great number of our readers agree, with some comparing it with VeilSide’s kit for the RX-7 or the Gumbert Apollo.
At least they gave it a decent, hypercar-worthy, interior. Still, even if it breaks the ‘Ring record or beats all of its hypercar rivals in comparison tests, there’s no way around the fact that something named after Senna deserved a much better design.
As for a lesson in how a company does justice to Ayrton's name, just check out Ducati's superbikes that not only go like stink, but look delicious, too.