After putting the McLaren F1 through its test procedure, Autocar magazine suggested that this was “very possibly the fastest production road car the world will ever see”.
In fact it wasn’t. True, the F1 accelerated from 0-60mph in 3.2 seconds (all in first gear) and from 0-100mph in 9.2, and although there wasn’t enough tarmac available to take the car to its maximum speed this was estimated as being over 230mph. These are astonishing figures, but other cars that can do better have been built since.
Even so, the F1 remains one of the most dramatically high-performance standard road cars ever devised. Almost nothing else can touch it.
You can’t buy a new one, though, and you haven’t been able to for a long time. 2018 is the 20th anniversary not of the F1 being launched, but of production coming to an end. Two years after the F1 was withdrawn from the market, you could still order a brand new classic-shape Mini. Everyday cars have moved on a lot further than ones like the McLaren.