This is the McLaren X-1, a dramatic one-of-a-kind production car based on the McLaren MP4-12C that was dreamed up by an anonymous McLaren enthusiast. McLaren Special Operations (MSO), the McLaren division behind delivering bespoke projects, turned it into reality, and it was seen in public for the first and only time at Pebble Beach last weekend.

It was one of those very special customers - someone who already owns a McLaren F1, Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren and 12C - who began discussions with McLaren chief Ron Dennis three years ago to build something completely unique. Apparently the brief was to create something with the capability of the 12C, but wrapped up in something that reflected his "needs and personality".

The design of the X-1 is credited to McLaren’s RCA graduate Hong Yeo, who won an internal and external design competition overseen by Stephenson. The styling took 18 months to sign off, and the bespoke body necessitated homologation, high-speed and track testing, and a full CFD aerodynamic testing schedule to ensure it was durable on the road.

Srrounded by bespoke carbon panels and brightwork machined from solid aluminium, like the shoulder rails, the headlight ‘eyebrows' and even the McLaren Airbrake. And as you can see, those carbon panels cover the rear wheels too, accessed via - in McLaren's own words - "some of the most gorgeous hinges you've ever seen".

The X-1 is wider and longer than the MP4 but weighs around the same (1,400kg), using the same interior architecture, albeit with some personalisation such as a titanium weave and tufted carpets.

Underneath, the same 3.8-litre twin-turbocharged V8 remains, powering the rear wheels, replete with 621bhp and many torques. It's also been thoroughly homologated for road use (it was tested for 625 miles) and because it's been nailed together by McLaren, expect it to offer Space Station levels of build quality.