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The McLaren MP4-31 is a Formula One race car that was used by the McLaren Honda team during the 2016 Formula One season. It is the last McLaren Formula One race car to carry the "MP4" name following CEO Ron Dennis' departure from the team.

Description

The McLaren MP4-31 was designed by McLaren to compete in the 2016 Formula One season. The car was driven by 2005 and 2006 World Drivers' Champion Fernando Alonso and 2009 World Champion Jenson Button, and reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne, who replaced Alonso at the Bahrain Grand Prix following the Spaniard's accident at the Australian Grand Prix which deemed him unfit for the next event. The car used the Honda RA616H power unit, the second engine developed by Honda since their return to the sport with McLaren in 2015.[1]

Despite the Honda power unit still being underpowered and uncompetitive compared to former rival teams, McLaren collected 76 points to place 6th in the constructors' standings, with Alonso achieving a best finish of 5th twice, as well as setting a fastest lap at the 2016 Italian Grand Prix. Alonso, Button, and Vandoorne came 10th, 15th and 20th in the standings respectively. The MP4-31 was succeded by the MCL32.

Asphalt 8: Airborne

Summary

A8 MP431 stats (P KMH)

The McLaren MP4-31 was added in the Car Blueprints Update as high-end Class S car with the following rank statistics:

Performance

The McLaren MP4-31 features a very high maximum speed of 314.1 mph (505.7 km/h), fast acceleration, very smooth handling and very sharp drifting at the cost of poor nitro efficiency. The MP4-31's maximum speed (alongside its maximum rank) is slightly subpar for a top-tier Class S vehicle, though it is still highly competitive. The MP4-31's acceleration is also not optimal albeit still fast enough to render it competitive. The MP4-31's closest competitors are the Apollo Intensa Emozione, 2018 McLaren X2, Koenigsegg Regera and Zeus Twelve Sigma.

The McLaren MP4-31 is the only vehicle out of all of the "kings" (best-performing vehicles) of the game prior to the addition of the Apollo Intensa Emozione (in April 2018) to the game (i.e. during the lengthy "reign of the Vulcan") that remains competitive in the present day.

The original kings that reigned alongside the McLaren MP4-31 included the Aston Martin Vulcan, Arrinera Hussarya GT, Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport, BMW 3.0 CSL Hommage, Lamborghini Aventador SV, Porsche 918 Spyder with Weissach Package, McLaren Mercedes MP4-25, TRION NEMESIS, Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Special Edition, and Devel Sixteen Prototype. Almost all of these vehicles have been nerfed either slightly or significantly across several updates (notably, the Sixth Anniversary Update and 2019 Halloween Update). Among these vehicles, all of those vehicles that were classified under Class A and/or held Elite status and/or relied on their large Tuning Kit bonuses have been rendered ineffective by numerous updates that occurred throughout the year of 2019, especially the two aforementioned updates. The only other vehicle (alongside the MP4-31) among those listed here that was on-the-whole buffed rather than nerfed by the end of 2019 was the TRION NEMESIS, though it was always on the lower end of the original kings in terms of performance. Note that these previous kings have also gradually been superseded by new kings (listed in the next paragraph) that have also been simultaneously nerfed (but still remain superior).

In the present day, the McLaren MP4-31 competes with the Lamborghini Centenario, Koenigsegg Jesko, McLaren Senna, Ferrari FXX K, McLaren 600LT, 2018 McLaren X2 and Koenigsegg Regera, being slightly worse than all of these vehicles but still among their ranks as one of the current kings of the game. That is to say, the MP4-31 is roughly the eighth-best vehicle in the game. The MP4-31 seems to perform better than the Apollo Intensa Emozione, Zeus Twelve Sigma and Rimac C_Two by small margins when triple-boosted, especially on technical tracks (tracks that require lots of steering, drifting, and airtime). Furthermore, the MP4-31 heavily outperforms the Devel Sixteen Prototype, Zenvo TS1 GT 10th Anniversary Edition and Arash AF10, all of which have similar ranks and speeds (but also have horrible acceleration, handling and drifting).

As of the 2019 Halloween Update, the McLaren MP4-31's total speed is 314.1 mph (505.7 km/h), which is faster than its original speed of 311.5 mph (501.5 km/h). The MP4-31 is still plagued by poor nitro efficiency, which can be alleviated somewhat with a combination of the Nitro Starter and Extra Tank performance boosters.

The McLaren MP4-31 excels in top speed, handling, acceleration, and drift capabilities, with a real total speed of 311.5 mph/501.5 km/h at PRO with a Tuning kit. However, it has a poor nitro efficiency, although it partially negates this with a higher raw top speed compared to its closest rivals. The MP4-31 skids frequently and can often spin uncontrollably when going off ramps, making it a "high risk + high reward" vehicle. The MP4-31's high instability is due to its extremely sensitive handling statistic of 1.400 Gs, which allows it to take many corners without drifting (much like the Mercedes-Benz Biome). With all statistics considered, the MP4-31 ranks as the overall 5th-best vehicle in the entire game, after the Arrinera Hussarya GT (which can be better or worse), Aston Martin Vulcan, Apollo Intensa Emozione, and the 2018 McLaren X2. Note that the X2 is a continuation of the MP4-31 with a higher real total speed of 316.8 mph/510.1 km/h, faster acceleration, slightly increased nitro efficiency, and even sharper steering at the expense of a wider drift radius. As of the Halloween Update, the MP4-31 is now more stable and safer to drive than before.

The MP4-31 is the third highest-ranked vehicle in the entire game with Elite Tuning not considered; this gives it a significant advantage over its main rivals (the lowest-ranked high-tier competitor is the McLaren Mercedes MP4-25, with a rank of only A1766). With Elite Tuning considered, the MP4-31 is the fifth-highest-ranked vehicle in the entire game, after the Mercedes-Benz SLK 55 AMG Special Edition and Devel Sixteen Prototype.

The MP4-31 has an unfair statistical advantage over its rivals. Despite having a Tuning Kit bonus below 30 points (making the MP4-31 only viable for Multiplayer at full PRO), the MP4-31 somehow manages to rank as the 13th-fastest vehicle in the entire game while still maintaining an acceleration statistic that places it as the 3rd-fastest-accelerating vehicle at high ranks (behind the MP4-25 and the TRION NEMESIS). The MP4-31's high total top speed is largely due to its high raw top speed (which makes it faster). In most situations where a vehicle has a higher raw top speed than its rivals (seen with the HTT Pléthore LC 750, Renault Sport R.S. 01, Devel Sixteen, and Arash AF10), the acceleration statistic is worsened (because of the weaker nitro). However, because the MP4-31 is a Formula One car, it has an artificially buffed acceleration statistic compared to its rivals, which actually negates its weak nitro enough to boost its acceleration above even the Vulcan and Hussarya GT. The MP4-31 accelerates in roughly 2.8 seconds (level-3), which is approximately half-a-second faster than the Vulcan and Hussarya GT, which both accelerate in roughly 3.3 seconds (level-3).

With the MP4-31 ranking as the 15th-fastest vehicle in the game (excluding the Kawasaki Ninja H2R motorcycle), with the fourth-fastest acceleration among vehicles travelling over 300 mph (483 km/h), it ranked as one of the top three vehicles (alongside the Vulcan and Hussarya GT) in the entire game on nearly every track. On longer tracks (specifically Tokyo), the MP4-31 is slightly inferior to vehicles like the Devel Sixteen, Porsche 918 Spyder with Weissach Package, Ferrari 488 Pista, M-B SLK SE, Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport, and Lamborghini Aventador LP 750-4 SV (all of which perform best on long/simple tracks). On medium-length tracks, the MP4-31 is second only to the Vulcan (by only ~0.2 seconds, generally). Technically, the MP4-31 is also superior to the Hussarya GT (which is usually inferior to the Vulcan by ~0.5 seconds) on ~70% of the tracks in the game, although it is usually only superior by ~0.3 seconds (rarely, it can be superior by up to ~0.7 seconds), which often cannot compensate for the frequent skids and terrible nitro efficiency (especially in a Multiplayer scenario). On short/medium-length and twisty tracks (like Dragon Tree, Tenerife), the MP4-31 is actually the fastest vehicle in the entire game, even defeating the Vulcan itself (by up to ~0.2 seconds), which was often regarded as the "king" of the game throughout 2017. However, to achieve such lap-times requires extreme skill; the over-sensitive handling must be utilized to its fullest ability, and the nitro must be managed exceptionally well.

NOTE: The lap-times described above apply mainly to 1-lap races. With 2-laps or more, the MP4-31 is at a slight disadvantage. In such a scenario, such as a 3-lap race on Patagonia, the MP4-31 can be defeated by the Corvette GS, which is arguably the best vehicle in the game for medium-length tracks with more than 1-lap, defeating even the Vulcan with skillful driving.

The McLaren MP4-31, if driven with extreme/above-average skill, can be one of the best Multiplayer Vehicles in the entire game, at full PRO (it can be used to reach 2300-2500 rating). The easiest method to avoid skids with the MP4-31 is to not steer the vehicle (ie, to drive the vehicle in a straight line, like a sleigh). Also, it is best to avoid "fights" with other drivers whenever possible.

The MP4-31 is certainly less impressive in Multiplayer than in TLEs, however. Its poor nitro efficiency is even more difficult to manage in a Multiplayer scenario; "perfect runs" can easily be canceled if an opponent pushes the MP4-31 into a wall and nitro bottles can easily be "stolen" by opponents (also, there is no traffic for near misses). The MP4-31 also becomes more difficult to steer/control in a Multiplayer scenario, with the MP4-31 being terrible at "dogfighting" (ramming the vehicle into opponents), where it can easily lose its grip with the terrain. The MP4-31 is also disadvantaged in Multiplayer races with more than 1-lap.

In a Multiplayer scenario (~1800 ranks), the MP4-31 is ultimately inferior to both the Vulcan and the Hussarya GT due to the above reasons. However, the MP4-31 is often superior to the Corvette GS because of the sheer acceleration advantage. The MP4-25 is another rival for the MP4-31 in Multiplayer, with its extreme acceleration being its main advantage.

A good configuration for the MP4-31 that is worthwhile, until one has enough Custom Racing Engines to fully PRO the vehicle, is X0X0. This gives a rank of S1732 and a decent real total top speed of 299.3 mph (481.8 km/h) when compared to the MP4-25's 303.4 mph (488.7 km/h) at A1766.

Official review

This is the official review of the McLaren MP4-31 on the Asphalt YouTube channel, made by TheHawtDawg1 and published on April 13, 2017:

Time to reach end of Tokyo straight: 6.798s

Perfect nitro duration: 7.755s

Triple nitro duration: 5.709s

French Guiana lap time: 54.021s

Final verdict: "The McLaren MP4-31 is a top S Class car that can challenge the Aston Martin Vulcan. It's main flaws are the nitro duration and lack of grip on the track which makes the car only for the professionals!"

Usage

At PRO, as described in the Performance Section, the McLaren MP4-31 is very good for Class S TLEs (which always have only 1-lap). The MP4-31 was the best vehicle in the entire game on some tracks and it is usually at least in the top 5 for the rest of the tracks. The MP4-31 was often able to achieve a position within the top 100 of Class S Leaderboards. If not, it is almost always able to achieve a position within the top 500, with good driving skill. As of the introduction of the Apollo Intensa Emozione and 2018 McLaren X2, the MP4-31 is now obsolete in almost all events.

The MP4-31 also has a decent Credits Grinding-race in McLaren Legends Season, located on San Diego Harbor. Compared to its 15th Mastery, the race has a lower payout (A8 credits small 5,735 + A8 credits small 100-400) and longer track time (~49 seconds at full PRO), in exchange for a Classic race mode and no minimum upgrade restriction.

Car Mastery

The McLaren MP4-31 offers A8 tokens full 100 and Licenses full a8 115 through its Mastery Challenges.

The McLaren MP4-31 15th Mastery Challenge is also usable for Credits grinding. The Flawless race on Dubai can be completed in approximately 44 seconds for an hourly payout of A8 credits small 365,625. Caution is however required as the track's ramps and traffic layout, coupled with the McLaren MP4-31's habit of skidding, can cause disqualifying wrecks, making this race only for advanced users. By comparison, the X2's 15th Mastery Challenge, set in The London Eye, awards a much higher race payout for a similar race time but with less risk (less traffic and less questionable ramp placement).

As of the Fast Lane Update, the Car Mastery race is no longer usable for farming credits, leaving it's sixth race in the McLaren Legends Season as the only race viable for credits grinding with this vehicle.

Price & Availability

A8 MP4-31 Tokens Price

When on sale, the McLaren MP4-31 costs A8 tokens full 15,000 to purchase (it has previously been sold for A8 tokens full 12,000 with a 20% discount).

As of the 2019 Spring Update, Pro Kits require A8 credits small 5,500,800, 50 of each Class S Part, 92 Custom Racing Engines, 96 Mid-Techs, and 64 Advanced Techs.

The McLaren MP4-31 counts towards the Bolides collection which awards A8 credits small 700,000.

Following its debut in the Championship event, the MP4-31 was later made available for purchase in late 2017 and between December 21-27, 2018.

Championship

MP4-31 Championship Promo
Main article: McLaren MP4-31 (Championship)

The McLaren MP4-31 Championship was held as the 4th and final McLaren Championship event on March 29, 2017, after the revival of the Weber Faster One's EDD. The event has a time limit of 4 days to participate and 10 days to complete the event.

The Championship was revived during the Motorcycles Update on September 21st, 2017 and in the Fifth Anniversary Update on October 4, 2018. It was revived again on July 18, 2019, alongside the Bentley Continental GT3's Championship event during the Showdown Update.

 

References

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McLaren_MP4-31
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