The Concours d’Elegance at Pebble Beach is always full of surprises and the McLaren X-1 Concept certainly qualifies as one. Built for an obviously wealthy and anonymous buyer, the X-1 Concept is a singular creation that utilizes the carbon monocell from the eminently capable McLaren MP4-12C and showcases what money and imagination unfettered can accomplish.

Inspiration for the design of the X-1 came from the 1961 Facel Vega, the 1953 Chrysler D’Elegance Ghia, the 1959 Buick Electra, the 1939 Mercedes-Benz 540K, and the 1971 Citroën SM. A design competition was subsequently held and McLaren’s own Hong Yeo won. Nearly three years later, the design was completed and the painstaking process of custom building the X-1 began. Nearly every aspect of the car is custom, apart from the base monocell structure, the beastly twin-turbo V8 engine and major mechanical components. The unique body panels are carbon and finished in gloss piano black, while some remain visible with a laquered carbon-fiber weave. All exposed metalwork is machined aluminum with a nickel finish. The interior is richly appointed in an appropriately contrasting Harissa Red McLaren Nappa leather, carbon fiber and aluminum.

The most unique aspect of the car is found in the retractable carbon fiber panels that cover the rear wheels, providing a futuristic approach to a stylistic element of yesteryear. Expect this custom job to drive like a true supercar, despite the increased dimensions. It remains light, fast and will surely be the envy of every filthy rich McLaren customer-to-be, who (upon reading this) will no doubt jump on their phones to dial in their own custom job to McLaren Spec Ops.

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