Aspirations are for those who hope to make it big; the 2020 McLaren 570 is for those who actually do. Make no mistake, this mid-engine sports car isn’t just meant to cruise the boulevard or attract gawkers everywhere it goes. No. All three models–the sporty 570S, the more comfortable 570GT, and the topless 570S Spider—have driver engagement engrained into their DNA. Each feature a soulful 562-hp twin-turbo V-8 that provides amazing acceleration and wails like a heavy-metal band. Combine that with the sharp-edged cornering of an Olympic figure skater and the grip of a vise and you essentially have the highlights of driving any of these magnificent McLarens. There’s a big difference between a supercar pretender and a supercar contender—the 2020 570 clan is the latter.
What’s New for 2020?
Pricing and Which One to Buy
- 570S coupe: $192,000 (est.)
- 570GT: $204,500 (est.)
- 570S Spider: $212,000 (est.)
The odds of a real-life McLaren shopper using our recommendation to influence their buying decision is about as likely as we are to actually be shopping for a 570, with its starting price right around $200,000. Still, that doesn’t make us any less likely to suggest how we’d outfit our ideal version of the fantastic mid-engine sports cars. Since we wouldn’t be regularly pushing the limits at the racetrack, we prefer the open-air experience that only the convertible 570S Spider provides. It also happens to be the most expensive version, but that won’t stop us from getting spendy when spec’ing it. We’d choose one of the wilder paint colors to ensure optimal ostentation and add the Track pack for enhanced performance. It includes lightweight wheels, a sport-tuned exhaust, copious carbon-fiber addenda inside and out, and a telemetry system to track your lap times. We’d also splurge on the Luxury pack that adds heated, power-adjustable front seats, an adjustable steering column, and a 12-speaker Bowers & Wilkins audio system. Finally, we’d add the vehicle lift to help avoid ground-clearance issues. Of course, McLaren offers numerous bespoke options that allow owners to truly personalize their purchase.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The 562-hp twin-turbo 3.8-liter V-8 that lives in the middle of the 570S runs as if it comes from a company that competes in Formula 1—which it does. Paired with a quick-shifting dual-clutch automatic transmission, in our testing, it launched the lightweight 570S with such brute force that the muscles in our neck had a tough time coping with it. From inside the car, the sound is intoxicating, begging you to floor the accelerator first and ask questions later. It’s also a car that’s magnificently one-sided, skewed so far toward annihilating back roads at insane velocities that it inspires both awe and terror when driven as its makers intend. We love it for that brilliance and purity of purpose, but other cars in this class offer a more refined and more comfortable driving experience. Few vehicles in the world, however, can match the 570S for sheer driver engagement. Its tactile steering, a chassis that feels alive, and its bottomless well of power kept us wanting more time with it on our favorite roads. The 570S will never be particularly cozy or convenient, so drivers must weigh the transcendent driving experience against daily utility before buying. Out on the road, the 570S’s brakes remain unfazed no matter how hard they are used, although the car dances when they are squeezed with full force at high speeds. For the right customer, this hint of instability only adds to the thrill.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
You don’t purchase a supercar for fuel efficiency, but it’s a bonus if your rocket sled doesn’t guzzle gas like a Starbucks addict swills triple-shot pumpkin-spice whatevers. While the EPA only provides estimates for the 570S coupe, the version we tested at a steady 75 mph on our 200-mile highway fuel-economy test route actually returned 24 mpg, beating its 23-mpg highway rating.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
The McLaren’s cabin is more an ode to carbon fiber than a living space, and while driver and passenger have roughly the same amount of room as in similar vehicles, the narrow seats, low seating position, and wide doorsill make it difficult to get comfortable. Dual-zone automatic climate control, leather seating, and an available faux-suede headliner give the 570 an upscale feel. Still, the effects of weight reduction are obvious, and other amenities are sparse. The paradox of a supercar such as this is that it begs to be driven on the open road, but it’s a lousy car to take on a trip. Cargo space and storage are almost nonexistent, so you’ll have to pack little else than a pair of flip-flops.
Infotainment and Connectivity
Its infotainment system packs an ample list of features, but its touchscreen responds slowly to user inputs and makes operation of the climate-control and sound systems more complicated than it should be. While we preferred to look out the windscreen rather than at its convoluted touchscreen, the system was serviceable nonetheless.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
None of the 570 models have been crash-tested by U.S. agencies, and all are devoid of driver-assistance technology. Adding driver-aid systems would only add weight to these flyweight fighters, so we would sooner stick to the high-performance diet.
Warranty and Maintenance Coverage
Among its supercar rivals, McLaren has the worst warranty coverage. Its corrosion protection is the only plan that is not the shortest, but even that is at the bottom of the list.
- Limited warranty covers 3 years and unlimited miles
- Powertrain warranty covers 3 years and unlimited miles
- No complimentary scheduled maintenance