British Power: McLaren Is Now Milking the E-Bike Industry With Their First "Hyperbikes"

McLaren E-Bike 16 photos
Photo: McLaren
There's really no need to point out that e-bikes are big bucks these days, so much so that even McLaren is in on the electrifying action. Heck, only a few hours ago, they announced their freshest lineup of "hyperbikes," a spin on an already existing lineup that brings massive power, speed, and capability. Did I mention the price tag, too?
That's right, people. McLaren, the one and the same considered an epitome of the automotive racing culture, has just unveiled a lineup of e-bikes that are something else entirely, as you'd expect from a crew like McLaren. That said, feast your eyes on the four available models for US clients, and feel free to comment if you've seen anything like this before.

But, the real catch here is the fact that these babies are infused with all the know-how and tech that McLaren has gathered over the years from their experience building cars, so what we're actually looking at are e-bikes that blur the lines of existing limits.

Now, an automotive manufacturer whipping out a branded bicycle is nothing new, but what separates the McLaren venture apart from all others is the fact that they're creating the frame themselves, a feat rarely achieved by such brands and one of the reasons why you need to listen up.

Photo: McLaren
Overall, four versions are available: two Extreme models and two Sport models. However, the 600 variations are the real attraction here simply because they boast a level of capability that is rarely attained in terms of power and range; I haven't had the pleasure of testing these yet.

To help break things down a bit, I'll be discussing the Extreme and Sport and their variations separately. That way, you have a better idea of what each one is all about. This magic starts off with nothing more than the Extreme.

What's so special about this one is the fact that it's a full-suspension monster capable of handling terrain you never even knew you could ride. Oh, and the fact that each frame is crafted from nothing other than carbon fiber and requires over 1,000 hours of handiwork to bring just one frame to life. Be sure to really soak it in as you explore the image gallery.

Photo: McLaren
Another attractive feature of the carbon fiber manipulation going on here is that juicy and completely integrated cockpit. Honestly, this feature looks very moto-like, with an integrated display and a monocoque design that looks a bit out of place, if you ask me. Hey, McLaren had to differ from other manufacturers somehow.

Up next, allow me to point out that McLaren is currently calling their 600 series the "World's Most Powerful Trail-Legal Electric Mountian Bike." This a very bold statement, and one that may even just be there for the flair those words bring; as far as I know, there's no such thing as "trail-legal," but maybe I'm missing something.

Why McLaren is leading with this statement may be due to the fact that these babies are rocking some of the most powerful motors I've run across. For starters, the 600 Series gets its name from the inclusion of a mid-mounted motor running under 600 W, and that's nominal, so the peak is clearly higher, at 852 W. But, it's the torque output of 161 Nm (119 lb-ft) that is really grabbing everyone's attention.

Photo: McLaren
But it's the torque output that's really blowing everyone away. This custom-tuned unit even bears the McLaren logo, so we can take a wild guess and say that they're responsible for this feature too, but that last one, I highly doubt; it takes a lot of know-how and production costs to whip up e-bike motors. I'm waiting on confirmation from McLaren as to who may be behind the motors. With five riding modes, future owners can tune their experience up to 20 mph (32 kph) speeds. There is nothing on the range, just the fact that 14.5 Ah of juice is in place and running under 48 V.

As for the rest of this monster, McLaren has chosen none other than Fox to supply the suspension systems; after all, they, too, are a leader in this industry. In all, 145 mm of rear travel is available, and 160 mm at the front. Drivetrains are rocking SRAM's XX Eagle AXS and four-piston hydraulic brakes. The Extreme 600 is also going for a pocket-shattering - it's a McLaren, after all - $50 shy of $12K (€11,500 at current exchange rates). No comment.

All that brings us to the hardtail this timeless automotive manufacturer has in store, the Sport. Personally, I'm a sucker for a hardtail, and to be honest, the geometry looks nice and solid, with an exquisite blend between the top tube and seat stay, but with a bit of a problem: this sucker is one bulky machine! Just look at it, for god's sake; from the down tube to the seat tube and that massive and reinforced head tube, it all screams, "I'm burly, and you're gonna like it!"

Photo: McLaren
Overall, this version rocks the same motor and battery as the Extreme, with differences showing up only once we scope out the drivetrain; instead of an SRAM XX Eagle, the Sport is equipped with a GX Eagle with 12 speeds. Throw on some massive brakes, a RockShox fork, and a pair of Pirelli rubbers, and you're set to drop $50 short of $9,000 (€8,300).

While most folks like you and me won't be spending this obscene amount of cash on one of these babies, there has to be a place for them somewhere, just not in my garage. This brings me to my next point in this rather dreamy event: being the first of their kind and the first McLaren-born e-bikes we've ever seen, these "hyperbikes" could very well be a bust. Heck, it happened with Apple's M1 processors; the first generation was glitchy as hell! I'd know; this text was written on an M1.

So, what's there to do? Well, you can find a dealership in your area that may have had the brass to pick up a pair of these babies and take them out for a spin or wait for reviews to surface and go from there. Nonetheless, this is a McLaren first, so, you know, hang it up on a wall if it's a bust.
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About the author: Cristian Curmei
Cristian Curmei profile photo

A bit of a nomad at heart (being born in Europe and raised in several places in the USA), Cristian is enamored with travel trailers, campers and bikes. He also tests and writes about urban means of transportation like scooters, mopeds and e-bikes (when he's not busy hosting our video stories and guides).
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