McLaren helping military chiefs to build a hypersonic missile in arms race with Russia and China

CAR maker McLaren is helping military chiefs to build a hypersonic missile.

The Formula One team has joined the arms race in a bid to knock Russia and China out of pole position.

McLaren has been recruited by the MoD to help build a hypersonic missile

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McLaren has been recruited by the MoD to help build a hypersonic missileCredit: Getty
One of the reasons McLaren have been called in is because they understand the need for an 'advantage over any rival'

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One of the reasons McLaren have been called in is because they understand the need for an ‘advantage over any rival’Credit: Alamy

The goal is to develop a super-fast rocket that can corner and swerve at speeds over 4,000mph.

The MoD wants them within six years as Russia and China already have them.

Hypersonic missiles can manoeuvre at faster than Mach 5 — five times the speed of sound — making them hard to take out.

Russia has unleashed Kinzhal and Zircon hypersonic missiles in Ukraine.

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Some were downed by US Patriot rockets despite Vladimir Putin’s boast that they were unstoppable.

China stunned the US and its Nato allies by test-firing two hypersonic weapons in 2022. 

Vice Admiral Andrew Burns said McLaren understood the need for an “advantage over any rival”.

He said: “Defence and motorsport have much in common, including a competitive instinct fuelled by a need to win.”

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Piers Thynne, CEO of  the Surrey-based  McLaren Racing team, said: “We’re proud to have signed the Armed Forces Covenant.”

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