Torque’s resident dentist inspects the gadgets in his fast but temporary “office”.
While the F1 has a naturally aspirated 6.1-litre V12 motor producing 610hp, the Senna has a twin-turbocharged 4-litre V8 that churns out a massive 789hp at 7250rpm.
The engine shares the same block as the 720S V8, but all the components surrounding or attached to it have been uprated to handle the extra power, torque and waste heat.
The McLaren F1 was designed for outright speed and it tops out at 391km/h. It makes the Senna’s maximum velocity of 335km/h look a bit unimpressive.
However, the Senna sprints from rest to 100km/h in 2.8 seconds, and does zero to 200km/h in 6.8 seconds. That is nothing short of amazing.
The Senna’s raison d’etre is not about setting a top speed record, even if the 789hp says that it should. Actually, it is designed to be the quickest track-day car, bar none.
On most circuits, even Formula 1 racecars have difficulty exceeding 320km/h. As such, 335km/h should be enough, even for a track like the Nurburgring.
Having decided on a reasonable speed ceiling for the Senna, the engineers could condense all that firepower within that envelope, rather than dilute it in the quest to achieve 400km/h.
The seven forward ratios of the Senna’s dual-clutch gearbox are closely stacked in such a way that top speed is only achieved in seventh gear at near-maximum revs.
The accelerative potential of every gear is maximised with no consideration for fuel efficiency, just pure unadulterated acceleration.
Up to 60 percent of the downforce is generated by the design of the car’s underbelly, while the rest is down to the front splitter and the huge rear wing.
Because said wing is hung (and not propped up as is the usual practice), the airflow is 30 percent cleaner on the underside of the wing. This side is more important than the topside, because it is responsible for generating the downforce.
The hung spoiler has an active secondary louvred wing across the primary wing’s trailing edge to capitalise on the rapid airflow coming off the spoiler’s top surface. This trims drag while accelerating and increases it during braking.
Prior to piloting the Senna, we drove four laps in a 720S under the guidance of a professional driver.
THE SENNA IS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING MORE THAN 2G UNDER HARD BRAKING.