Page created: May 30, 1999
There have been a few articles in US magazines regarding this
car. In an effort to avoid plagiarism charges, I’ve condensed
the articles to some key points. Think of the articles below
as book reports for your enjoyment. Now, repeat after me:
“It’s good to be the king.”
Road & Track
DECEMBER 1997 (Peter Egan) -- This was an article about the
first McLaren F1 federalized in the US. It included road tests
of this amazing car.
- The car was federalized by a company called Ameritech (not
the phone company). Technically, they are the manufacturer of
this car in the US.
- There are currently (at the time of this article) five F1s
in the United States, with a sixth on the way.
- Ameritech added things like headlights and bumpers, and removed
the rear seats to make it US-legal.
- This was someone’s personal car who let R&T test it.
(Very nice and trusting guy from Texas.)
- Base price: $890,000. Price as tested: $1,131,120.
- The McLaren F1 has no ABS (anti-lock brake system).
- The engine will crank four times before firing the cylinders,
probably to get the oil moving.
- R&T experienced some heating problems while testing and
driving it around. Of course, they were testing in the Arizona
desert. According to the factory, some concessions were made
on low-speed cooling for high-speed performance.
- The tester likened it to a motorcycle, with respect to the
- The F1 has a 260 mph speedometer. (It may not go that fast,
but can you imagine where 55 mph would fall on such a speedometer?)
Road & Track
AUGUST 1998 -- I’d like to talk more about this issue, but
my friend still hasn’t returned my copy to me. You’ll have to
go with what I remember for now.
Road & Track tested the fastest production cars in America
(World’s Fastest Cars xx), with Mario Andretti behind the wheel.
Other cars in the test included the
Ruf CTR 2, Ferrari 456 Maranello, and, well, you know.
- The fastest car in America is... the Ameritech McLaren F1.
Duh. It reached a speed of 217 mph.
- This was the same car as in the December 1997 issue.
- There’s a lot more, but I’m waiting for my friend to return
my issue. Please check back later.
AutoWeek - Million Dollar Service
MAY 10, 1999 (Russell Bulgin) -- This is an interesting article
on the ownership of the F1. For example: where do you
take one for an oil change, or what do you do when you need a
new muffler? This is maybe one of my favorite articles about
They had one main article, and a mini article on getting it
approved for the road in England through a regular government
inspection. In the main article, they interviewed Harold Dermott
from McLaren, an ex-Jaguar engineer.
You need to look at this issue if you really like this car.
There are pictures of F1s all over the factory garage, as well
as close-ups of cool components.
- A regular service visit can cost up to $16,000.
- Service intervals are nine months, and typically cost $3,200
to $4,800, with eighteen-month ones costing more.
- The muffler costs $17,600. Plus labor. It’s apparently made
- The service includes a before and after evaluation on a private
track. What do they do at this evaluation? How about:
- A 12 -minute warm-up period.
- Test brake flap operation at 100 mph.
- Confirm electric windows do not work at 130 mph (they’re
locked out at this speed).
- They polish the lacquered, carbon fiber floor underneath
the car. (Remember, “it’s good to be the king.”)
- Each McLaren has a modem which links the onboard electronic
diagnostic system to the factory. With this system, the factory
can control various items on the car.
- The F1 was clocked last year in a German test track at 240.1
- Production run included 64 road cars and 26 racing versions.
(It is no longer in production.)
- There are three versions: the original F1, a lightweight
F1 GTR, and a long-tail F1.
- There are at least two people that own one of each kind mentioned
above. There is no information of the color of the cars they
- Other owners include actor Rowan Atkinson (“Mr. Bean”),
fashion designer Ralph Lauren, and “musician” Liam
Howlett of Prodigy. The other owners are apparently anonymous.
- The factory believes that the car can last forever, as there’s
nothing that can corrode.