It’s been known in the automotive industry for probably close to two decades that in order to succeed, you need to make SUVs. Some manufacturers held off creating such a model for as long as they could, but now most have given in and are finally making their own, which given current industry trends is usually electric.

McLaren is the last car brand that you would expect to be making an SUV, since it traces its roots back to Formula 1 and the McLaren F1, neither of which have anything to do with going off-road. Yet given the fact that even more prestigious sports car brands like Ferrari or Aston Martin have jumped on the SUV bandwagon, it would today not be out of the question to see one come out of Woking.

Of the three sports car brands mentioned above, Lotus is really not wasting time and it has already shown the production version of the vehicle they think the market really wants - the Eletre electric SUV, which could best be described as a battery-powered Lamborghini Urus rival.

Gallery: McLaren Extreme E electric off-roader

McLaren CEO Mike Flewitt made it clear in late 2020 that the company he ran was not interested in building SUVs, pointing to the fact that it is too early in the brand’s history to really create a credible entrant in the segment. His view was that McLaren still needed to establish itself more as a maker of sports and supercars before moving to SUVs, but a new rumor would completely contradict that statement.

Autocar says one is being developed, but that it won’t arrive until around the year 2030. When it does debut it will be a BEV-only model, and the only tall model in the manufacturer’s lineup. However, even if it will be just the one model, McLaren is known for offering several often quite different variants based on the same basic vehicle, so even if that’s true, expect several power outputs and profiles.

The UK publication’s unnamed sources tell it that this model will cost the equivalent of over $420,000 (€402,000) and be called Aeron, not much else.

That’s very little to go on, but McLaren is invested in electrification - it made an Extreme E electric off-roader (pictured) and it has released several cars with electrified powertrains, the most recent of which is the Artura plug-in hybrid supercar. The latter also marks the debut of a hybrid-only platform that the manufacturer will use for all its models going into the 2030s - all McLarens will be hybrids after 2026.

McLaren says it could start work on an electric-only model at any time, but it is choosing not to in order to keep the company’s trademark characteristics. In fact, there is a chance that this rumored electric SUV might be McLaren’s only EV going forward, since it has not announced plans to make one of its usual models electric. Porsche has proven that adding an SUV to your lineup can vastly increase profits and their example has been successfully followed by others.

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