Home > Auto > News > Watch: Open-top McLaren creates 'air bubble' for wind protection at high speeds

There is a certain addiction to swept-back hair for speed aficionados cruising down long winding roads in their ultra performance sports cars on a bright sunny day. Innumerable movie scenes have helped make it even more iconic even if the reality may have its own set of very real problems. For starters, the drag force on the upper body can be quite unnerving and this is where windshields come in. But what if there is no windshield at all?

Say hello to McLaren Elva, a British supercar with all the performance features speed enthusiasts would adore but minus that critical windshield that is a common sight in almost every vehicle of today.

So how does a sports car without a windshield save occupants from, well, wind?

In a McLaren fan page on Facebook, the company has explained the science used to ensure that no windshield is no problem at all. The company claims that the Eva has been designed in such a way that its aerodynamic body allows the wind stream to pass through the sides of the vehicle more effectively than in most other cars. This ensures that minimal wind flows over the car and onto passengers. There are also air vents on the hood of the car that further help create an 'air bubble' of sorts for the passengers.

Photo grab from video posted on Youtube by McLaren Automotive.
Photo grab from video posted on Youtube by McLaren Automotive.

Additionally, there is a deflector which rises about 5.9 inches at high speeds to further cocoon the passengers and prevent wind from disturbing the drive.

And the drive can be quite delightful.

Under the hood, the McLaren Elva gets a twin-turbocharged 4-litre V8 motor with peak power of 804 horses. The car claims to go from zero to 62 mph in a little under 3.2 seconds. That the car breaks wind at such speeds is a marvel in itself but that it does so without a windshield and yet occupants are hardly ruffled is indeed an ode to McLaren engineering.

Only 399 units of the Elva will be manufactured by McLaren. And it is reportedly priced at an extravagent $1.6 million.