Driven: 2022 McLaren Artura Is Crazy Fast, and Sips Fuel
What about the Artura’s steering, handling and braking?
One of the Artura’s undoubted high points is the steering. The company retained a hydraulically assisted system because it offers more feel of the tires. We agree. A light nose weight also allows more feel because the level of assistance needed is less.
So your hands can read the road like your fingertips are down there. The dips and crests, the nature of the surface itself, and most of all the proportion of available tire grip that you have used: All that info and sensation is fed back in abundance. It makes the car super-engaging even at normal road speeds and imparts huge confidence when you’re at max track-speed effort.
The handling balance is neutral, with a proportional ability to rotate into a bend with a lift of the throttle. It’s not snappy. Traction is strong and you can select multiple levels of traction control, with increasingly lurid doses of oversteer. But again, it’s comparatively controllable rather than knife-edge.
The Artura’s standard-fit carbon-ceramic brake discs are clamped by six-piston monobloc calipers at the front and four-piston at the rear. The resulting stopping power is immense, while the rear suspension geometry keeps the car reassuringly stable. That said, the pedal isn’t all that sharp at the beginning of its travel. That makes it easy to be smooth at urban speed, but some extra initial bite would make things feel more vivid in quick driving.
The Artura doesn’t have McLaren’s clever hydraulically cross-linked roll-control system, relying instead on conventional stabilizer bars. But it does have adaptive damping. Suspension control is just terrific at all times, and as with the powertrain you can cycle between damper modes: Comfort, Sport and Track.
In electric mode, by the way, accelerating from 0 up to about 30 mph is quite brisk, but beyond that it gets pretty sluggish as the motor can only sustain peak power for a few seconds. To drive on rural roads or highways on pure electric would be a waste of battery. Save it for when you’re in town.