Porsche 918 Spyder Beats McLaren P1 at Laguna Seca Track, Ferrari Chickens Out

Published: Mon Mar 09, 2015 by Marko P.  |  Categories: McLaren, Porsche  |  Source: Motor Trend

The McLaren P1 and Porsche 918 Spyder went head-to-head at the legendary Laguna Seca race track, while Ferrari (again) refused to grand permission to use a customer's LaFerrari. Read the full article at

Given that Ferrari is known to provide factory-modified test cars to enable them to perform better in comparisons, Motor Trend was apparently keen on using a LaFerrari from a regular customer.

"Competition requires showing up. We sought a LaFerrari to join the P1 and the 918. McLaren sent tech support, Porsche a 918, but Ferrari refused to grant permission for hot laps and data acquisition to the LaFerrari owner we had lined up," said Motor Trend in its article.

Both the P1 and the 918 were driven by Motor Trend's race-car driver, Randy Pobst, who noted that the Porsche is well-balanced and almost feels like a rear-wheel drive car. The McLaren P1, meanwhile, is the wilder of the two and has enough power to spin its sticky Pirelli Trofeo R tires even in third gear.

In the end, the 918 Spyder was quicker around the Laguna Sega with a time of 1:29.89. That was eight tenths faster than what the P1 could manage, a 1:30.71.

"The P1 ABS was old-school obvious in its application and felt as though it lengthened brake zones considerably. I kept overrunning the turn-in points in it. This was the primary area where it can be improved, a quicker cycling, smarter, track-ready ABS control system like in real race cars," said Randy Pobst.

In November 2014, evo magazine tested both cars at the Anglesey Circuit in the UK. The P1 beat the 918 there by two tenths of a second.

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