McLaren’s next supercar will have Top Gun technology

McLaren is one of the biggest brands in the motoring world, known for having built some of the fastest cars. Lockheed Martin is one of the most important companies in the aerospace and military industry. And now, they have joined forces through a collaboration that more than one has dreamed of: together They are going to create a new way of designing the future supercars of the British firm.

While McLaren is developing, under the leadership of Michael Leiters, a new line of models and even its first SUV, the British brand has signed a collaboration agreement with Lockheed Martin and, specifically, with Skunk Works: the Advanced Development Programs of the American company.

technology collaboration

Skunk Works was born in the 1940s and has a long history of secret projects. His are the F-22 Raptor, the F-35 Lightning II, the F-117 Stealth Fighter, the U-2 spy plane or the SR-71 Blackbird. And if none of this sounds like you, it is possible that you do recognize the plane that appears, next to the McLaren Artura, in the photos. That’s him Darkstar, the conceptual hypersonic jet designed by Skunk Works for the movie ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ who appears in the opening scenes.


What exactly does this collaboration entail? Design only? Also technology? McLaren has not given many details: a mystery that, ironically, coincides with the multitude of secret projects managed by Skunk Works throughout these decades. The British brand talks about “technological collaboration” so it is likely that the result of this association will focus more on optimizing the development processes of the vehicles than on anything that McLaren customers can see in their models.

simulation software

Darren Goddard, Technical Director of McLaren, recalled that they have always pushed “the limits looking for new innovative and disruptive solutions to manufacture the best supercars.” From his words it appears that they have turned to Lockheed Martin and Skunk Works to provide a more futuristic approach to design of the next generation of its vehicles.

However, the most interesting thing for Mclaren will be access to Lockheed Martin’s pioneering simulation software. The objective is to adapt it to be able to apply it to supercars and, specifically, to high-speed engines. This would allow parameters to be set more accurately and quickly than with traditional design methods. McLaren scientists and engineers will work alongside their Skunk Works counterparts to test and explore how this cutting-edge technology could be applied commercially in the motorsport world.

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Taking into account that, in 1976, the SR-71 Blackbird broke the absolute top speed record with 3,529.56 km/h, It is interesting to imagine what the supercar that will be born from its alliance with McLaren could be like.

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