Speedtail offered with 18 carat gold badges

Badges? You want badges? McLaren will do them in gold. And platinum

If your pockets are sufficiently deep to find £2.1m for a hyper GT car, there’s a good chance you might also be a fan – or at least very familiar – with all things gold. McLaren reckons so anyway, as it’s offering each of the 106 buyers for its new Ultimate Series car the option of having 18-carat white gold badges. They replace the standard fit, peasant-spec aluminium alternatives, and are produced by Vaughtons, a gold specialist that has made, among other things, Olympic gold medals and the FA Cup.

McLaren’s logo is laser-etched into the gold before being surrounded by carbon fibre inserts that have been made using the brand’s own thin ply technology, which keeps weight to an absolute minimum. The front badge is smaller than the rear one, so it weighs just 100 grams.

The use of gold in the Speedtail’s badge has been linked to the use of gold in the F1’s engine bay. That’s a rather tenuous link, isn’t it, because the F1, which is the Speedtail’s three-seat spiritual forebear, used gold to keep temperatures under control. In the Speedtail it’s there, for, erm, bling. Plus, if gold’s not enough, McLaren will produce an even more expensive platinum version of the badge for you instead.

What about if metal’s not your thing? Or you’re fearful of badge robbers looking for their next medallion centre piece? McLaren can also stick on a transfer of its logo instead, a la Porsche GT. Any guesses as to how many buyers will opt for this option? We suspect not many.

Whatever the material of the badges adorning your Speedtail, there’s no question that it will be insanely fast. With an anticipated 1000hp produced by a hybrid 4.0-litre V8 powertain, Speedtail will be the fastest McLaren yet produced, with an officially confirmed top speed of “more than 243mph”. Woking won’t budge on an exact number yet because it’s saving that for its reveal event, which will take place in London and be broadcast online at 1pm on October 26th. We’ll have the full story then.

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