McLaren Racing helps power British Army electric 4x4s

March 28, 2024 by

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McLaren Racing is partnering with the Ministry of Defence to share its motorsport expertise to develop armoured electric vehicles for the British armed forces.

  • McLaren Racing is partnering with the Ministry of Defence (MOD)
  • NEOM McLaren Formula E motorsport technology helping to develop electric armoured vehicles for British armed forces
  • MOD says electric vehicles could increase operational effectiveness (high power and torque, plus silent running and reduced thermal properties)

McLaren Racing’s motorsport technology from the likes of its NEOM Extreme E all-electric off-road series race car is helping the Ministry of Defence (MOD) develop armoured electric vehicles for the British armed forces.

The MOD is partnering with McLaren Racing to use its racetrack expertise to develop ‘new solutions for a variety of defence projects’. 

One of the first projects is Project LURCHER – the electrification of military and armoured vehicles to increase ‘operational effectiveness’. 

To announce the partnership, the NEOM McLaren Extreme E race car was at the MOD’s BattleLab co-creation space in Dorset alongside Project LURCHER’s Land Rover Defenders which have been converted to electric power to evaluate the benefits and constraints of electric vehicles for the armed forces.

A Land Rover that has been adapted to be an electric vehicle and a NEOM McLaren Extreme E race car at Battle Lab in Bovington, Dorset. @ MOD Crown Copyright 2024

The MOD says innovation in technology will help increase the range of electric vehicles and could make them more operationally effective thanks to their extra power and torque, silent running, reduced thermal signature and bi-directional charging capabilities. They could also reduce the need to resupply fuel to armoured vehicles during operations, therefore reducing the vulnerability of the armed forces in the field.

A British army Land Rover that has been adapted to be an electric vehicle that could increase operational effectiveness @ MOD Crown Copyright 2024

“The Ministry of Defence will collaborate through McLaren Accelerator to apply motorsport innovation and insights to projects that are jointly selected by Defence and McLaren teams,” said Matt Dennington, Co-Chief Commercial Officer at McLaren Racing.

“This new partnership with the Ministry of Defence provides a great opportunity to stretch and apply our innovation and technological know-how and a high-performance culture with a view to improving operational efficiencies across a wide range of exciting projects,” Matt Dennington added.

A NEOM McLaren Extreme E race car and a Land Rover with Revised Weapons Mounted Installation Kit (RWMIK) that has been adapted to be an electric vehicle at Battle Lab in Bovington, Dorset. @ MOD Crown Copyright 2024

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps commented: “This exciting partnership will see McLaren Racing bring their world-class expertise from the racetrack into a number of defence projects.”

This is not the first time McLaren has applied its motorsport expertise to other applications. It recently partnered with The Great Barrier Reef Foundation and two other organisations as part of its Climate Contribution Programme to provide solutions to the impacts of climate change. The racing team’s engineering skills are helping projects such as accelerating coral reef restoration at a scale and speed not possible before.

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