Have we reached the limit in what road cars can achieve?

Do we really need anything more than the McLaren 765LT?

31w ago

Ever since the automobile first came out back in around 1886, there has been a constant battle between countries and manufacturers to see who can produce the best, fastest, most luxurious and most capable car in the entire world.

Cars are much like the space race in that respect, everyone wants to reach these top speeds and goals first and they will do anything they can to get there but have we reached a stage where it has become too much?

I wrote an article last year with the title: Here's why you don't need more than 500 horsepower and this is almost an extension of that piece, if you will. By looking at and reading the media and press surrounding cars these days it is clear to see that today's technology is so advanced and is reaching a stage, in my opinion, where we simply don't need anymore.

Take the McLaren 765LT for example. This is the brand new car to be added to McLaren's Super series of machines and from what I've read, it is absolutely bonkers to drive. If you don't believe me, go and watch the videos and read the reviews because from what I can tell, it is the most capable car of the year.

And this begs the question, have we reached the limit in what road cars can achieve and do we actually want or need any more car than this? I mean, even look back at the cars over the last few years such as the McLaren 720s, Bugatti Veyron, Ferrari 458 Speciale, Porsche 918 Spyder and so on.

These are all incredibly capable cars and I am sure are great fun to drive but surely we have to reach a point where we peak. Even Bugatti themselves said they are no longer going for top speeds any more. Once they had achieved the 300mph, they said it was time to back off and focus on other things. Because, not only is it dangerous as the tyres can't handle those sorts of speeds but isn't it also...well...pointless?

There are very few places you can exceed 300 mph, let alone 200 mph or even 100 mph. Chasing top speeds simply isn't what we should be aiming for anymore, especially not for a road car.

Okay, I've gone on a bit of a tangent there but let me get back to my original question. Like I've said before, the perfect car is a bog-standard Porsche 911 Carrera/Carrera S. I don't care what you say but it just is a fact.

Yes, the new Turbo S is a ballistic German animal but deep down it is a little boy from Stuttgart named Hanz who doesn't require more than 500 horses and is perfectly happy whisking around mountain roads in the south of France.

I'm not entirely sure how I managed to get from McLaren's new flagship supercar to talking about a small German boy with an equestrian fetish, but there you have it. Stop chasing top speeds and enjoy the cars we already have. Even a battered old Peugeot 205 GTI would be more fun on a country road than any Ferrari from the last 20 years. There, I said it.

What do you think?

Have we reached a dead end when it comes to seeking car performance?

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Comments (15)

  • no, and it's gonna get worse (or better, depending who you ask) with EVs because achieving mind-blowing performance figures is actually easier with electric cars. It's relatively easy to make an EV that does 0-60 in 1 second, maybe not today or tomorrow but it's definitely around the corner, but the question we should be asking ourselves is "are we sure we want that?" Because it's not pleasant. And it's not useful. Cars are already faster than they need be, in my opinion, and I'm not talking about road rules, I'm talking about usability and fun. And the top speed frenzy is red harring. There's no point achieving a 200 mph top speed if you need the entire length of the M4 to get to 200

      7 months ago
    • I agree. Whatever you think of evs (whether they are powered by hydrogen or batteries) they are the future and itis necessary that the automotive industry needs to become more environmentally (as well as pretty much all other industries)...

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        7 months ago
    • I believe there is still a long way to go. Not in increasing the absolute numbers, but bringing the price of those numbers down. This, however, is dependent on the demand. There is a certain type of person who will never buy an AMG63/GT350/NSX...

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        7 months ago
  • anything more than these will have to be robot type-car, so yeah we have reached the limit.

      7 months ago
  • Cars have been heading in the wrong direction for years. Bigger, heavier, more powerful, more capable, more unusable, less fun. That’s been the trajectory. It’s a shame that ICEV’s final days have been an opportunity wasted.

      7 months ago
  • Not so much we have reached the limits of what is capable for a machine. We HAVE reached the limits of what normal drivers can achieve behind the wheel. We are definitely nearing the end of ICE. It's the horsepower heyday and the end. Enjoy while you can because it's all EV from here.

      7 months ago
    • the ICE has 20-25yrs at the most after that I am pretty sure that it will cease to exist but that said I have not given up on petrol and probably never will!

        7 months ago
  • Maybe........YES!

      7 months ago