Supercars are starting to feature the latest hi-tech advances, such as electric-engine options, wireless connectivity, apps to open the doors and self-driving capabilities.
In the past, the appeal of a supercar used to be relatively straightforward: racetrack-ready handling, a growling engine, aggressive styling and an exotic name. As customers demand more than just acceleration, the time-honored formula of the past is being tested and changed.
BMW and Mercedes-Benz aim to design the best highway steering assist. This is considered as an important step toward self-driving cars.
Porsche and McLaren are open to autonomous features. Just a few years ago this new attitude would have seemed unthinkable for sports brands focused on the thrill of the road.
According to Auto News, a good example of a modern supercar is Chiron from Bugatti. The car comes with specs that were absent from the Veyron, its predecessor. For instance, as the car's speed increases, the infotainment system fades to invisibility on the cockpit screens.
Another example is the $1.24 million P1 hybrid from McLaren Automotive. The same publication reports that McLaren's CEO Mike Flewitt explained in the company is looking for ways to make an electric engine vibrate.
Mr. Flewitt declared that McLaren produces entertainment rather than transportation. In order to be relevant and exciting in the future, they need to answer some important questions and find new ways to position on the market.
Across the supercar sector, attitudes are shifting rapidly. After the statement made in September by Porsche with its Mission E concept car, all-electric models are starting to enter the sports car segment.
As it invests in 15 new models, McLaren will include hybrid technology in half its models by 2022. Its first P1 hybrid went on sale in 2013. The sports car manufacturer is starting work on an electric-car concept that will be a follow-on for the P1.
According to Live Science, the 2016 New York International Auto Show has shown exciting displays of expensive and exotic cars defying the imagination with high technology and high speed. Hybrids are more mainstream thanks to new lightweight gas-electric supercars and self-driving cars are closer to reality.