Supercar and hypercar maker McLaren Automotive has announced it is collaborating with Lockheed Martin Skunk Works, the renowned creator of advanced aerospace vehicles for the U.S. military and intelligence services, to assess what it terms “a futuristic design methodology.”
McLaren says the project “will focus on deploying a new Skunk Works’ design system, developed for the world of aviation, into the realms of high-performance, cutting-edge automotive supercar design.”
The Skunk Works software sets the parameters for high-speed systems more accurately and swiftly than traditional design methods. McLaren scientists and engineers will work alongside their counterparts at Skunk Works to test and explore how this cutting-edge technology could be employed commercially in the automotive design world.
“McLaren is a pioneering company that has always pushed boundaries and sought out new innovative and disruptive solutions to making the ultimate supercars. Working alongside an iconic company such as Lockheed Martin Skunk Works, renowned for their visionary focus on the future, is a natural fit,” said Darren Goddard, Chief Technical Officer, McLaren Automotive. “We hope this is the start of a longer and deeper collaboration that will benefit our customers in the long term.”
To commemorate the launch of their technology collaboration, both companies showcased some of their latest projects at Skunk Works headquarters in California’s High Desert. Alongside the conceptual Darkstar hypersonic aircraft – star of the blockbuster “Top Gun: Maverick” movie – was a McLaren Artura hybrid supercar (pictured, top).
McLaren’s first series-production High-Performance Hybrid (HPH) supercar, the Artura is the brand’s first model built on the all-new McLaren Carbon Lightweight Architecture (MCLA) which is uniquely optimized for HPH powertrains and features an all-new twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 gasoline engine with an E-motor.