Under the Hood: Tips and Tricks to Driving the McLaren 570s GT4

Whilst it might not be McLaren’s newest GT4 car in the real world, ACC’s 570s GT4 brings unique characteristics to the table as a nimble mid-engined challenger.

McLaren has an extensive GT4 customer client program featuring cars in virtually all regional GT4 championships around the world and successfully competing against Mercedes, BMW, Porsche and other manufacturers. The McLaren 570s GT4 was their primary model designed and built for competitive racing in the GT4 category in the 2017-2022 seasons, based on the road model 570s manufactured from 2015 until 2021.

Although the new generation McLaren Artura GT4 has replaced the 570s GT4 since the 2023 motorsport season, only the 570s GT4 is available in simulators for now. Here is what you need to know to get the most out of the 570s GT4 in Assetto Corsa Competizione.

Introducing the McLaren 570s GT4

In July 2020, Assetto Corsa Competizione introduced the McLaren 570s GT4 and ten other GT4 cars as a part of GT4 DLC. If you have raced in the senior McLaren 720s GT3 EVO in the simulator, you will be familiar with the overall feel of the GT4 because they share the same mid-engine design. 

The 570s GT4 is naturally more nimble than some of its GT4 counterparts such as the Aston Martin V8 Vantage or Chevrolet Camaro, making it a better choice for slower speed circuits. However, at the same time, it struggles to attack large kerbs which is an unfortunate byproduct of the same mid-engined layout which grants it so many strengths. 

  • At Coach Dave Academy, a team of skilled drivers and engineers have created top-notch qualifying and race setups for the McLaren 570s GT4. You can access these setups by subscribing to our ACC setup package or purchasing the latest setup package for this car and specific track.

The Basic Car Characteristics

The 570s GT4 is powered by a 3.8-litre twin-turbocharged V8 engine, similar to the one used in the road-going 570s. However, the engine is restricted to comply with the GT4 class balance of performance rules and produces only up to 460 horsepower. It features a six-speed sequential transmission and a lightweight carbon fibre chassis, a hallmark of McLaren’s road and race cars.

The 570s GT4 has several setup features that separate this car from most other GT4s and the senior 720s GT3 EVO model:

  • The front and rear negative camber can be as low as -5.0 degrees, while many GT4 and GT3 cars allow camber only down to -4.5 degrees. This helps to add mid-corner grip and further highlights the strengths of the mid-engine design of the 570s GT4.
  • The setup range of electronic assistants (traction control and anti-lock braking system) is limited compared to the 720s GT3 – only four settings for both compared to 13 (0-3 vs 0-12). Of course, the second level of traction control customisation (TC2) that appeared on the 720s GT3 EVO is not available on this car.
  • The mechanical grip setup is limited even compared to other GT4 cars. For example, only two options are available for front and rear anti-roll bar and wheel rate settings.
  • As usual for GT4 cars, fast bump and rebound dampers are not adjustable separately. You can change only the slow damper settings.
  • The aero setup does not have an adjustable front splitter (that appeared in the 720s GT3 EVO), and the rear wing has five positions instead of 12 on the GT3 car.

Steering and Cornering

When cornering, the McLaren 570s GT4 has similar strengths and weaknesses to the senior 720s GT3. This car tends to understeer on the corner entry and oversteer mid-corner, so usually, you have to carry less apex speed and get on the power 10-20 meters later than in the Alpine GT4, for example.

The wheel rate stiffness in the 570s GT4 is limited to a neutral range between 140,000-170,000 N/m at the front and 162,850-175,520 N/m at the rear. For comparison, in the 720s GT3, you can change the stiffness between 118,000-230,000 N/m at the front and 83,000-209,000 N/m at the rear.

Besides, the ARB has only two settings for the front and the rear axle. Therefore, the 570s GT4 relies mostly on bump stops and dampers to correct its natural cornering weaknesses. Typically, the car likes a softer bump stop rate and a higher bump stop range at the front and a stiffer bump stop rate and a lower bump stop range at the rear.

Dampers are also crucial for improving performance at the corner entry and over the curbs, but setup values depend on the characteristics of specific circuits. Regardless of the damper setup, this car cannot attack kerbs as aggressively as Mercedes or BMW because of its weight distribution.

Power Delivery and Braking

The McLaren 570s GT4 is surprisingly fast on the straights and has excellent acceleration, in particular, in the 150-220 km/h range. At the end of the main straights, it beats the current top GT4 car, Alpine, by 7-9 km/h with the same rear wing settings. The McLaren is also 3-4 km/h faster than front-engine cars, such as the BMW M4 GT4 and the Mercedes-AMG GT4.

The car includes TC and ABS, but you should turn off TC completely to maximise acceleration, as usual with the GT4 cars. The McLaren has no preload differential, either, so it is crucial to be smooth on the throttle to limit wheel spin.

The brake balance is fixed at 60%, and you need to adjust your braking technique due to changing conditions, such as fuel levels, tyre wear, track temperature and rain.

  • To help you find the perfect balance for the McLaren 570s GT4 around each track, Coach Dave Academy’s ACC Setup Subscription provides you with new setups and data packages every week.

Aerodynamics and Bodywork

Although the McLaren 570s GT4 lacks performance in the corners compared to Alpine, do not try to compensate for it with the higher aero because GT4 cars produce too little aero downforce for this approach to be efficient. Instead, keep the rear wing low to maximise top speed for overtaking opportunities and defend in the corners.

The 570s GT4 prefers a lower rake to complement its high aerodynamic efficiency, similar to the 720s GT3 EVO. Usually, aim for the minimal front ride height and the rake between 5 mm on low downforce circuits and 15 mm on high downforce circuits.

Final Thoughts

The McLaren 570s GT4 is an unusual car in the GT4 category because of weight distribution and setup limitations. You must be precise and smooth to manage the lack of preload differential, its tendency to oversteer when changing directions and poor performance over curbs. But when you get it right, McLaren is a competitive car on low downforce circuits thanks to excellent top speed.

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