The LM is based on the McLaren F1 GTR and built on the standard F1 chassis, with modifications necessary for the modified GTR to be a road legal car—but without the engine intake restrictions that racing regulations impose on the GTR racing car.
McLaren designed the standard F1 as an ultimate road car, in the sense that it strives to be comfortable and usable in everyday conditions despite being a potent sports car. However, the LM edition is a lower and stiffer, track-oriented vehicle, with a stripped down, bare interior, and solid aluminium bushings in place of the rubber bushings in the suspension system and without the Ground Plane Shear Centre system on the standard F1.
Of the production run of six, five F1 LMs were sold and the sixth, the Papaya orange prototype F1 LM, ‘XP1 LM’, was retained by McLaren and used as the platform for the continued development of the F1 chassis. Owners of the other five LMs include Ralph LAUREN (LM3) and Yoshio TSUZUKI (LM2). The other THREE are owned by the household of His Majesty, The Sultan of Brunei (LM1, LM4 AND LM5).
This car,’XP1 LM’, is reportedly worth $25 million, and was promised by then McLaren CEO, Ron Dennis to his driver Lewis Hamilton if he should win two Formula One World Championship titles. Subsequently however, Lewis Hamilton left McLaren with his single World Championship title to drive for the rival Mercedes Formula 1 team in 2013 and the car still remains in possession of McLaren.
The F1 LMs can be identified by their Papaya orange paint. The F1 LM’s were painted in this colour in memory and tribute to Bruce McLaren, whose race colour was Papaya orange. It has been discovered however, that contrary to the official word from McLaren at the time, only four (including the prototype) of the LMs were originally painted ‘Papaya’ orange, with two of the three delivered to The Sultan of Brunei being painted black (with “graphics”)?
The F1 LM is considered the fastest incarnation of the McLaren F1 road-cars through the gears and in overall track performance. It has a tested 0-60 mph (97 km/h) time of 3.9 seconds due to huge wheelspin at the start, 0-100 mph (161 km/h) in 6.7 seconds and was once the holder of many world records, including the 0-100-0 mph record it completed in 11.5 seconds (over a distance of 828 feet or 252 metres) when driven by Andy Wallace at the disused airbase RAF Alconbury in Cambridgeshire.
0–60 mph (97 km/h): 3.9 seconds
0–100 mph (160 km/h): 6.7 seconds
225 mph (362 km/h) – which is less than the standard version due to added aerodynamic drag.